Wellness CenterMay 2015
We all know that physical exercise helps you to move better, improve your balance and maintain your physical strength. But how does music therapy-based exercise help you with that? Exercising with music is fun, but that’s not all. Whether you are musical, a musician, or have no musical background at all, you move better and more functionally with music.
How so? Because our brain LOVES rhythm. Rhythm helps to create regularity in our activities such as movements, physiological responses like breathing, and information processing. Research has shown that rhythmic cues could be an effective timekeeper despite basal ganglia deficits and rapidly forms stable and precise internal templates to organize motor responses (McIntosh et al., 1997, Thaut, 2005). Board certified music therapists are trained to appropriately utilize the elements of music such as rhythm to drive the best possible, desired responses in therapy for each client’s needs including improving walking patterns, movement coordination, and balance.
Using commercially-recorded music gives a limitation that you tend to adjust—“move to” that tempo (speed) or rhythm of the music. Whereas music (song) selections made by music therapists in therapy are to “facilitate” the movement in an optimal way, so you will be encouraged to naturally “move along” with the music. Your exercise movements can achieve more fluidity and coordination. In addition, music is a highly structured art medium. It provides you opportunities for repetitions so that you are able to exercise or relearn movements or skills in the optimal way.
You may feel that you understand the importance of exercise, but may feel discouraged due to pain or physical discomfort you are experiencing. Up to 85% of individuals with Parkinson’s reported that pain is a concern (Parkinson’s Disease Foundation, 2015). Research results have suggested the positive effects of therapeutic music listening for pain management (American Music Therapy Association, 2015) as it helps us to redirect your focus away from unpleasant sensation. In fact, many of my clients have mentioned that they did not focus on their pain or physical discomfort while exercising with music during music therapy sessions.
It may be easy to see the relation between singing and speech because we use the same physiological functions. It means the shared areas of the brain are activated while speaking and singing. Moreover, research has found that while we are singing, we use additional parts of the brain in addition to those shared areas (Özdemir, Norton, & Schlaug, 2006; Tamplin, 2008; Thaut, 2005). This indicates that singing, when it is clinically crafted as a therapy exercise medium, can enhance neuroplasticity, which allows the neurons in the brain to compensate for injury and disease and to adjust their activities in response to new situations or change in their environment.
It is obvious that music brings us some emotional sensations. Music brings back fond memories from the past and allows you to reminisce. Music is deeply associated with our feelings and can be stored with your memory. Sometimes it can go to the opposite direction - music may bring you negative feelings or emotions. If music happens to evoke negative emotions, music therapists are trained to properly follow up on this situation. When we introduce music/songs in a sensible manner during music therapy sessions, it would support you to express your emotions in a caring, encouraging environment. It would also work as a catalyst to better connect with family and friends regardless of your challenges with Parkinson’s.
If you are interested in exploring the benefits of music therapy for Parkinson’s, join us at Music Therapy for PD at Ted Brown Music in Tacoma.
Megumi Azekawa is a board certified music therapist and owner/director of Puget Sound Music Therapy. She facilitates the NWPF’s new program, Music Therapy for PD at Ted Brown Music in Tacoma. She also shares her music therapy knowledge and insight in her blog, Musically Thinking.
American Music Therapy Association (2015). Music therapy and music-based interventions in the treatment and management of pain: selected references and key findings.http://www.musictherapy.org/assets/1/7/MT_Pain_2010.pdf.
McIntosh, G. C. et al. (1997). Rhythmic auditory-motor facilitation of gait patterns in patients with Parkinson’s disease. Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry, 62, 22-26.
Özdemir, E., Norton, A., & Schlaug, G. f(2006). Shared and distinct neural correlates of singing and speaking. Neuroimage. 2006;33:628–635.
Parkinson’s Disease Foundation (2015). Pain. http://www.pdf.org/en/pain_pd.
Tamplin, J. & Grocke, D. (2008). A music therapy treatment protocol for acquired dysarthria rehabilitation. Music Therapy Perspectives, 26(1), 23-29.
Thaut, M. (2005). Rhythm, Music, and the Brain: scientific foundations and clinical applications. New York: Routledge.
Megumi Azekawa, MM, MT-BC
Music Therapy for PD Instructor, NWPF Guest Blogger
March 24, 2015
Year in Review 2012
PD Community BlogPulling the Plug
Five Important Questions: How Do I Make the Best Decision?
Love Your Body Week
A Review on Parkinson Pete’s Bookshelves
Parkinson Voice Project
The Thief vs. A Superhero
The Parkinson's Pandemic
Parkinson's and Profanity
Parkinson's Pain by Proxy
The Most Interesting Men in the World
What Dreams May Come…
Book Review: on Carrying the Black Bag
Make Anger Your Ally
The Parkinson's Life (You Should Be So Lucky)
Parkinson's Takes Guts
Being Defined by Parkinson's Disease
Don't Mistake Your Claws For Virtue
A Day in the Life of a Parkinson Warrior
Who Needs PAM?
Bicycling through Alaska Winter: Insanity, or Mere Stupidity?
Pay It Forward
Book Review: Dealing and Healing with Parkinson's Disease and Other Health Conditions
Book Review: Everybody Has a Window and Aisle Seat
10 Things You Don't Know About PD
Introducing NWPF's New Social Services Manager: Sarah Winter, MSW, LICSW
Davis Phinney Foundation for Parkinson's: Preparing People to Meet Someone with Parkinson's
Lies That Parkinson's Disease Told Me
Managing the Holiday Blues 2016
Who Was That Masked Man?
The Rain Is Shining — A Thanksgiving Message
Book Review - H.O.P.E.: Four Keys to a Better Quality of Life for Parkinson's
David Leventhal: Dancer, Teacher, Community Leader, Humanitarian, Movement Specialist
Rhonda Foulds, Outrunning Parkinson's Disease
Book Review: The Perapatetic Pursuit of Parkinson Disease
Staff Stories - Melanie
Snake Oil, the Cure for Parkinson's.
Book Review: Nan Little
Life's a Lot Better with NWPF
Book Review: Natural Therapies for Parkinson's Disease
Dare to Attend a Support Group
Ten for David
Time After Time: Kim Farmer's Story
The Glass is Half-Full
Book Review: Reverse Parkinson's Disease
Parkinson's and Free Will
A positive attitude is everything
Book Review - Lucky Man: A Memoir
Alexithymia, the Parkinson’s Get Out of Jail Free Card
We Make Them Together: Major Decisions in Caregiving
Boxing is cool
Safety with Style: House Renovations you can hold on to
Book review: On My Own
Shaken to the Core
Isolation and Parkinson's Disease, The hiding and the hidden
Camp Brian Interview
Safety with Style: House design ideas you can hold on to
Book review: Shake Well Before Use
Notes on Acceptance
"Advice" to a person with Advancing Parkinson's Disease
Needed: New Parkinson’s Vocabulary
Caregiving: Ken's Story
A Well-Tested Testimonial, or Spin for Parkinson's
Safety with Style: House design ideas you can hold on to
Caregiving: Susan's Story
Rock Steady Boxing: Emily
Book Review: My Degeneration, A Journey Through Parkinson's
The Marble Halls of Power
Safety with Style: House design ideas you can hold on to
ROCKIN’ AROUND THE GROCERY CART
Managing the Holiday Blues
Book Review: A Complete Guide for Patients and Families
The joke is on Parkinson's
I don't always like groups, but when I do...
JBC + DBS: A Mostly-Love Story (Continued)
Rock Steady Boxing: Fred Hyde
Present Moment: A Continued Conversation
Book Review: Navigating Life with Parkinson's Disease
JBC + DBS: A Mostly-Love Story
On the scent of Parkinson’s disease
Harold Allen (Hal) Newsom
The 2016 World Parkinson’s Congress in Portland, Oregon is Fast Approaching: Make Plans to Attend
Flowers on Dr. Starr's Tie
Leading the life of malicious whimsy
Listen: Unlocking Parkinson's Disease
Book Review: If I Can Climb Kilimanjaro, Why Can't I Brush My Teeth?
The Evolution of HOPE
QUIZ: How well do you know your Parkinson’s Disease?
Living with Hope
Notes on Hope
Tug, tug, tug
Denial on Trial
Flowers in Our Hair
Resilience: Bouncing Back from Adversity
Tina Sawyer Steps Up Fundraising in Seaside
The uncooperative patient
To be in June
Caring for a Spouse Living with PD
Doc Parkinson - A Eulogy
Boom Go Parkinson’s Costs
From the Depths of the Cupboards: Pumpkin Bars
Choosing a shared burden
Our Brain's "Negativity Bias" Part 2
Outside of Language
Managing Constipation in Parkinson’s Disease
Finding Time for Caregiver Care
The Helplessness Antidote
Examples of living your best
10 exercise tips for people with Parkinson's
Bit on Basketball
Suggestions for the Shaken
Parkinson's Action Network (PAN) Report
Our Brain’s “Negativity Bias”
Living for a Cure
Three Huge Changes for People with Parkinson's
Caregiving, the Next Level
Making Spousal Relationships Work
Parkinson’s and Luck
Resolve to be a Better Caregiver!
Update from the Parkinson's Action Network
Strategies to Achieve our New Year’s Resolutions and Goals
Movement is Medicine
Hello from Canada!
You can't do that!... Can you?
Behind the Scenes with Maria Cole, MSW
Aiming for Well-Being
Aiming for Well-being
Holiday Feasts, Family & Fun
Pause and Be Thankful
Diagnosis is a turning point, not a beginning
Behind the Scenes with Steve Wright
On the Practice of Gratitude
Thanks for Joining Us at the HOPE Conference for Parkinson's
Is there anything good about Parkinson's Disease?
Understanding and Managing PD-Related Shame and Embarrassment
An Open Letter to My Family & Friends
Parkinson's Travel Tips
PD & Creativity
Living Conference Held in Boise
Caregiver Burnout - Write it Down!
How Could I Be So Wrong?
Medicine and Cognition
Take a Hint from PD
Taking the Park out of Parkinson's
Northera and Dizziness
Dairy & Gut Health in PD
One Step At A time
Common Medicines Common Side Effects
Parkinson’s Disease & Supplemental Security Income
Coming Out of the Caregiving Closet
Parkinson’s Disease Nutrition: Why is it Relevant?
The Importance of Care before Cure: NWPF’s Past, Present & Future
Impulsive behaviors and activities: What is the cause?
Top medicines that worsen Parkinson’s disease or cause secondary parkinsonism
Is leg pain a symptom of Parkinson's?
Look beyond Parkinson’s when symptoms change quickly
Stem cells-what are they and how are they made?
Acting out your dreams- a sleep problem in Parkinson's disease
Are there recommendations for the best type of mattress for Parkinson's?
How can service dogs help Parkinson's?
Is your environment a high risk PD zone?
Is natural dopamine better than Sinemet?
Is marijuana helpful for Parkinson’s?
What is atypical parkinsonism and how does it differ from PD?
Does glutathione help Parkinson’s disease
What do I need to know about vitamins?
When do I need to see a physical therapist?
Can you give any additional information about Othello Syndrome in the context of PD?
What causes hallucinations?
How can I alert medical providers that I have DBS in an emergency? Can mammogram be done?
Top Ten Tips for Parkinson’s Disease- Tell us yours
Booth Gardner has touched the lives of so many
How do I best time doses of carbidopa/Ldopa?
My mom has PD and almost every evening, any time between ...
How does Parkinson's affect cognition? What can be done about it?
Absorption of Sinemet requires optimal GI health. Is anyone working on a sublingual delivery of the medication?
Can ultrasound treat Parkinson’s tremor?
Most popular posts of 2012
What are you grateful for this holiday season?
How can I tell whether medications are wearing off or Parkinson’s disease is progressing?
Can a person with Parkinson’s give blood?
When is the right time to start Levodopa?
Can acupuncture help PD symptoms?
Support the Caregiver in your Life
Power of the mind to move treatment further
Top 10 Foods for Parkinson’s (and counting!)
How can I prevent dizziness?
What can you tell me about laser light therapy and Parkinson’s
What is music therapy?
Should I take Coenzyme Q10 for my Parkinson’s?
How do I treat my cough at night?
Parkinson’s fitness programs need to be tailored to the individual to get results
Carrying the Olympic Torch for Parkinson’s today
Coffee reduces risk of Parkinson’s. What about other foods?
Facts about depression
How can I find a good doctor who is knowledgeable about PD and is caring as well? My doctor does not always listen.
Help for constipation
Sex, Intimacy and Parkinson’s
Does DBS affect speech?
Walking and balance can significantly impact quality of life- but is treatable.
Depression is common with Parkinson’s
Ode to Parkinson’s- Poem from Member
Music Enhances Brain Activity
How does posture change with Parkinson’s?
What is important to you?
Are hallucinations caused by Parkinson’s?
Hot Off the Press – Neupro approved by FDA
How do I find a Parkinson’s physical therapist to keep me exercising?
Does Azilect slow disease progression?
Manage nausea from medicines
Is delaying medication harmful?
Advice for newly diagnosed
Is Parkinson’s Hereditary?
Is gambling a side effect of medicine?
Does stress cause Parkinson’s?
When to see a physical therapist
FDA approves DATScan
Protein’s effect on medicine
Restless Leg Syndrome