Fitness Health Lifestyle

Exercise and Parkinson’s

Avatar photo
Written by Tim Barnes-Clay

Dad of three, Tim Robinson, was diagnosed with Parkinson’s recently, and talks to Tim Barnes-Clay, about how he uses exercise to manage his symptoms.

Last year, I noticed a tremor in my right leg. My mum, Yvonne, had lived with Parkinson’s for ten years, so as soon as I noticed the tremor, I immediately visited my doctor.

I told the doctors about my mum’s  Parkinson’s (she sadly died in 2017 when she was 77), but they assured me it was rare for it to be hereditary, which is true. They put me in touch with a physio to control the tremor, but the exercises weren’t making any difference. I was then put on a six-month waiting list to see a neurologist. But wanting answers, I decided to see a private consultant who confirmed my instinct was right – I had Parkinson’s.

After seeing how my mum found it very difficult to cope with the condition, I was determined to do all I could to manage my Parkinson’s symptoms. I found out that exercising for at least 2.5 hours a week can really help.

Since my diagnosis, I’ve started going to the gym twice a week, walking the dogs and doing an exercise class that helps hand and eye coordination. Physical activity has so many benefits for my Parkinson’s symptoms, both physical and mental.

In September, I signed up to participate in Walk for Parkinson’s, Parkinson’s UK’s flagship fundraising programme. The fundraising series unites people across the country to walk in support of people who have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s and their families, friends, and carers.

I wanted to sign up and fundraise to help Parkinson’s UK find better treatments and, ultimately, a cure, as this would give me and my loved ones hope for the future and a better quality of life.

In 2023, there were 15 walks around the country; my local Walk for Parkinson’s event was at Marbury Country Park Northwich. It was a lovely walk in the beautiful park and woodlands adjacent to Budworth Mere, and the variety of distances meant that there was an opportunity for everyone to get involved.

I took part with my partner, Heather (Tim and Heather in pic above), and we are proud to have raised £1,600 for Parkinson’s UK. I’d encourage everyone to get involved with Walk for Parkinson’s this year. It is a great way to spend a memorable day raising money for a worthy cause, and I can’t wait to take part again this year.

Parkinson’s and physical activity

Everyone’s experience of Parkinson’s is different, and that includes the level of physical activity those with the condition can manage. There is no one-size-fits-all approach, but being active can help manage Parkinson’s symptoms and positively impact both physically and mentally. Learn more at

Find out more

Anyone concerned that they may have Parkinson’s should see their GP. Getting information about the condition and finding support can be a massive help for people who are diagnosed. Support is available for everyone affected by Parkinson’s on the Parkinson’s UK website and via the free, confidential helpline (0808 800 0303) and online forum.

Get involved

Parkinson’s UK is calling on people across the UK to sign up for Walk for Parkinson’s 2024 to help fund vital research to find better treatments and a cure for the condition. There are 15 walks around the county, and it costs just £12 to sign up (under 18s go free!), plus the suggested sponsorship target per person is £50. All walkers will receive a fundraising pack with tips and advice, sponsorship forms and an exclusive Walk for Parkinson’s t-shirt to wear on the day.

The charity is looking for volunteers to help at the walks, as well as walkers. To learn more about Walk for Parkinson’s and to sign up to walk or volunteer, visit or email

Leave a Comment