Specializing in geriatric care
Our mission is to improve the daily lives and well being of people with Parkinson’s disease. Our program, The Climb, provides a research-based exercise program and support system that is geared towards common symptoms and deficits of the disease. Join us as we help Hoosiers affected by Parkinson’s disease.
Indiana Parkinson Foundation (IPF) was formed in 2009, after a family received a diagnosis of Parkinson’s Disease. The man behind this diagnosis was Don Waterman, a farmer from Hamilton County, IN, a man in his early 50’s, and a man very loved and treasured by his family. The diagnosis of Parkinson’s left many questions and much confusion, feelings of fear and denial. But, after time, something emerged, and it was the desire to do “something”. What that “something” was supposed to be, was the question. It was determined that a foundation should be formed. Although the family members had no knowledge or expertise in this area, they found hope in knowing that they were being led forward by the Lord in their efforts.
When IPF began, its mission was to provide funding for adult stem cell research, which was done through the Cell Therapy Foundation in Indianapolis. Over time, it became apparent that IPF was to change its focus from funding research to helping those who are in the trenches “right now” with the disease. Some of the board members were attending the Parkinson’s Symposium in Indianapolis. David Zid was the keynote speaker at the symposium. He spoke about exercise and the benefits that it can have on the symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease. A seed was planted that day in September 2010 that quickly grew into the CLIMB, an exercise program for people with Parkinson’s. Through the knowledge and expertise of Joy Gordon (physical therapy), Andy Durnell (personal trainer), and Don Schaefer (IPF board member and CLIMB advocate), IPF has developed the CLIMB. The CLIMB, first held in the Children’s Programming area of White River Christian Church, has grown and changed in many ways. What began as a few volunteers, a few class members, and a little bit of equipment moved in and out every Saturday, looks very different now. More weekly CLIMB classes were soon offered at the Noblesville Athletic Club. And soon after that, Community Health Network offered IPF the use of a large space to house a fully-functioning gym, full of class members, programming, equipment, and life! The CLIMB in 2014 is a very different place than it was in 2011. IPF has been graciously blessed by White River Christian Church, Noblesville Athletic Club, Community Health Network, and many others. The song that inspired the formation of IPF had become the story of IPF.
The CLIMB was built on a combination of physical therapy, aerobic exercise, and boxing. The program has grown to now offer BIG Movement, Postural Therapy and Balance, Yoga, Egoscue, Massage Therapy, Speech Therapy, and Weight Training. Not only does the CLIMB offer many services led by experienced trainers, it is also a safe haven of support and encouragement for people with Parkinson’s and their families.
People are being changed at the CLIMB — mentally, physically, and spiritually. What began as a small and humble endeavor, in honor of one man, has grown and continues to grow — only by the grace and guidance of the Lord — into a community resource for many, offering strength and hope.
“I was blessed to have found The Climb about a year after my diagnosis of Parkinson’s. I knew that I needed to do something more than take medication and what I have found at The Climb is a friendly, supportive, knowledgeable staff who teach and encourage us to keep working harder. My goal in joining the workouts at the Climb is to slow the progression of the disease, but I believe that some of my symptoms have even improved. I definitely have not noticed any significant worsening of symptoms since I started. I usually attend 3 times a week, and if I lived closer would likely show up every day. It is an inspiration to join in fellowship with many people who are fighting a similar battle, yet all doing so with a positive attitude.”
“I have attended The Climb for about 3 years and the benefits are remarkable. First, there is an instant bond with other folks who are struggling with Parkinson’s Disease. Second, the trainers are exceptional. With a diverse group of people in a variety of stages of the disease, the trainers are excellent at modifying and also challenging the participants. Choosing to move is a phrase we are all familiar with and a necessary part of dealing with Parkinson’s.
Finally, on a personal level ….Exercising had never been important to me, so when I started going to The Climb I just wasn’t sure I wanted to commit. It wasn’t long before I looked forward to attending and challenging myself to try things I’d never done before. Last September I ran my first 5k. It was the encouragement of the trainers and fellow PWPs (people with Parkinson’s) that kept me training for that event. What a privilege and honor it is to be able to go to a place where you are accepted, can share and learn from others, and work to improve your physical health and be the best you can be! I love this place!”
“I come to the Indiana Parkinson’s Foundation( The Climb) because it keeps me moving, the trainers are awesome, and sharing with the PWP’s is helpful. I would rate the Indiana Parkinson’s Foundation ( The Climb ) 5 Stars !”
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