Swinging a golf club not only requires balance, but may also improve balance and mobility for patients with Parkinson’s disease and other movement disorders. Emerging research shows that golf has a large and measurable benefit on quality of life, movement coordination and balance, and helps reduce fall risk in patients with Parkinson’s.
UF Health Rehabilitation – Emerson offers a specialized golf and exercise program designed for individuals with movement disorders, Parkinson’s disease and essential tremors. The program addresses symptoms, such as impaired balance, poor movement coordination, tremor, muscle rigidity or stiffness, slowed motion and instability, which often can limit participation in recreational activities.
Golf rehabilitation: Why choose UF Health?
Our board-certified physical therapists specialize in neurology and orthopaedics and have used this expertise to create a comprehensive treatment program. With neurology-based sessions, our therapists focus on alleviating impairments related to the movement disorder. In addition, they use orthopaedic sessions — designed by an experienced golf instructor and former collegiate golfer — to strengthen specific golf skills and improve overall performance.
A bodyweight-supported harness system and a netted turf area offer a safe and therapeutic environment during sessions. Each session includes an evaluation and treatment, with the goal of returning patients safely to the golf course. A physical therapy referral is required for participation.
A research study option (IRB 202202232) examining the effectiveness of the program will also be available for those willing to participate. Principal investigator Joseph Legacy, MD, can be reached at (904) 244-9945.
Related conditions & treatments
Community and Patient Programs: Golf rehabilitation for mobility disorders
Our community and patient programs provide great value to patients, families and loved ones. People can find support, educational materials, expert consultants and more. In most instances, these programs are offered free of charge.
Meets on the second Wednesday of each month, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. in the UF Health Jacksonville Towers, 580 W. 8th St.
Tai chi classes for patients and caregivers with neurologic conditions such as Parkinson's, stroke, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy and neuropathy.
Yoga classes for patients and caregivers with neurology conditions such as Parkinson's, stroke, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy and neuropathy.