Mindfulness and Parkinson's

Mindfulness meditation can improve your physical and mental wellbeing. It's as useful to the people in your life as it is for your Parkinson's symptoms. It may be especially helpful while we're living through the uncertainty caused by coronavirus.

The Parkinson's mindfulness toolkit

The Parkinson's mindfulness toolkit introduces you to the techniques and benefits of mindfulness.

We developed the toolkit with Sue Newsham. Sue is an independent health and wellness coach and one of our area development managers. People with Parkinson's worked with us to create the toolkit.

The Parkinson's mindfulness toolkit is:

  • a short video explaining the benefits of mindfulness for people with Parkinson's
  • a full 15-minute mindfulness audio session 
  • 5 short videos with instructions on how to practise basic mindfulness techniques

You'll find the toolkit below. For a copy of the audio files, email [email protected]

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Follow our 15-minute mindfulness session

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This audio session aims to help you take 15 minutes for yourself. It helps you to be mindful, manage anxiety and depression, and enhance your wellbeing. 

You can use it alone or in a group. You should be somewhere that you feel comfortable and where no one will interrupt you.

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These videos take you through different mindfulness tips and techniques

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This technique focuses on the breath to slow the heart rate and calm the mind and body.

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This breathing exercise helps you to relax when trying to get to sleep.

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This technique focuses on increasing awareness of your mind and body.

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This 4-step technique helps you to stop and acknowledge your surroundings.

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This calming technique focuses your awareness on each foot in turn and brings you back to the present moment.

You may find this particularly helpful if you have problems freezing when you walk.

What is mindfulness?

We all have the ability to be mindful. Mindfulness is a therapy that can help people with Parkinson's manage their symptoms.

Mindfulness is about being aware of the present moment, free from distraction or judgment. It can help you be aware of your thoughts and feelings without getting caught up in them.

15 minutes of mindfulness can go a long way. By training your mind to be present, you can feel the benefits in your everyday life. It can be particularly helpful when facing challenges that Parkinson's brings.

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How can mindfulness help people with Parkinson's?

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Mindfulness helps us acknowledge a situation for what it is. Then it gives us the space to choose how to respond.

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About our mindfulness toolkit

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We've developed this toolkit for people with Parkinson's. But family, friends and carers might find the techniques useful too.

We're tailored the sessions for people with Parkinson's and their symptoms. But the basic mindfulness techniques could be beneficial for anyone.

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We've designed the 5 short videos to teach you simple mindful methods and techniques. You can use these anywhere – at home or out and about. 

We've designed them to help you cope with stressful situations. Or whenever you need to take a moment to calm your mind and body.

You can use as many or as few of the 5 techniques as you want. You may find that some are easier or more effective for you than others.

We've designed the audio session to help you take 15 minutes out of your day. This is to help you to be mindful, manage anxiety and depression, and enhance your wellbeing. 

You can use it alone or in a group. But you should be somewhere that you feel comfortable and where no one will interrupt you.

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We developed the mindfulness toolkit with people with Parkinson's and our staff members. 

Please consult your GP or Parkinson's specialist if you're concerned about:

  • the effects of using the toolkit
  • practising mindful meditation in general

Parkinson's UK does not endorse any particular therapies.

As with all treatments for Parkinson's symptoms, different things work for different people. If you're interested in mindfulness meditation, we encourage you to explore what works for you.

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Please email us at [email protected] with any questions or feedback. We'll aim to respond within 5 working days.

Everyday life with Parkinson's

There are lots of ways you can take control of everyday life with Parkinson's, from adapting your diet to doing regular exercise.