Patients challenge Parkinson’s disease with body percussion
Patients who suffer from Parkinson’s disease are making use of “body percussion” classes tutored by a professional drummer in the Aegean province of İzmir.
Gülnur Uğurlu Kelçe, the head of the Parkinson’s Disease Patients Association which offers the therapy, has told Anadolu Agency that weekly sessions are really helping the patients.
“It made us very happy to observe the change in patients after the moves that maintain body coordination,” she said, adding that physical exercise was nearly as important as medication in treating the symptoms of the disease.
Body percussion is the art of striking the body to produce various types of sounds for didactic, therapeutic, anthropological and social purposes. It is a subject of “body music” and is inspired by folk music from several countries across the world.
The technique is basically beating particular body parts of the patients to ride rhythms, according to Fikri Yargıcı, who leads the sessions.
Seven different melodies are played by using the chest, hands, laps and feet, he said.
“We are producing beautiful melodies by making the moves in a defined order and tempo. The improvement is incredible,” he said, adding that sessions also contribute to patient’s sense of rhythm.
The tutor encourages the patients to practice at home.
“Sometimes I assign them homework. I hope we will be ready for a show next year. It will be a two-minute percussion show,” he said.
Levent Karcı, one of the patients, also said that his moves have improved with body percussion.
“Before the therapy, I feared that I would drop anything I hold. After making these moves, my fear alleviated.”
Fuat Şentürk, another patient, believes that the improvement is at around 80 percent.
“Life is wonderful. I can roam around or see my doctor all by myself.”
His wife, Sultan Özcan Şentürk, also confirmed the recovery.
“His walking and speech have changed since he started coming here. His hands used to shake. Now he can walk without help.”
Parkinson’s disease is a degenerative disorder of the central nervous system that mainly affects the motor system of the body. The symptoms generally come slowly over time.