Parkinson's Wellness Classes

The Emerson Parkinson’s Program is pleased to offer a free wellness class for patients and caregivers. This program was supported by a community grant from the Parkinson’s Foundation.

Introduction to Pole Walking for People with Parkinson's Disease

Pole walking is a style of walking using poles (similar to ski poles) in each hand to enhance aerobic exercise. Pole walking is particularly helpful for people with Parkinson's disease. It increases stability, improves upright posture, and helps with coordination of arms and legs.

This three-part series welcomes individuals with Parkinson's and a partner. Classes will teach you how to safely incorporate pole walking into your exercise routine. In this in-person class, the instructors will work with the group to ensure proper fit of the poles, lead warm-up activities, and teach you walking techniques for flat and varying surfaces and for managing obstacles. The group setting offers participants the opportunity to socialize and connect with others.

Activator poles will be provided for each participant enrolled in this program. After completion of the program, you and your partner will have your own activator poles to progress your walking program. Connections made within the class may encourage you to organize your own pole walking meet-ups in your local area.

Two physical therapists with certifications in Parkinson's-specific exercise will be leading the classes, and both have completed the Activator Pole Certification training. Upon completion of this course, you will have everything you need to start your pole walking journey!

Participants can enroll as individuals or with a partner (must register separately to participate in class), and are limited to attending only one session of three classes. Ideal participants are able to walk independently or with a cane for at least 10 minutes. If you have questions about your mobility status and this program, please contact Heather at

  • WHEN: Fridays from 12-1 p.m. Each session is three consecutive weeks
    • Session 1 — August 4, 11, 18 [ passed]
    • Session 2 — September 8, 15, 22 [ passed]
    • Session 3 — September 29, October 6, 13 [ passed]
    • Session 4 — October 20, 27, November 3 [ passed]
    • Registration for the following sessions will open on Feb 1, 2024. These sessions are set to take place in 2024:
      • Session 5 — March 1, 8, 15
      • Session 6 — April 5, 12, 19
      • Session 7 — April 26, May 3, 10
      • Session 8 — May 17, 24, 31
  • WHERE: Clough Family Center for Rehabilitative & Sports Therapies, 310 Baker Avenue, Concord, Mass.
  • CLASS SIZE: 8-10
  • INSTRUCTORS: Heather Mistry PT, DPT, NCS; Francesca DeSimone-Farrow PT, DPT; Kristina Murray PT, DPT
Reminder: Please enroll each class attendees, including partners or caregivers, as a separate individual.

There are currently no sessions available for registration.