If you have not yet heard of LSVT and its influential impact on the quality of lives of people with Parkinson Disease here is your chance. LSVT stands for Lee Silverman Voice Treatment known as LSVT LOUD, which was developed in 1987 as an effective speech treatment for individuals with Parkinson disease. Due to its successful treatment effect LSVT BIG was then developed using the same principles of amplitude training.
Amplitude can either be referred to as the range of your voice from a whisper to a shout, or the range of your physical body movements from small slow movements to big powerful movements. One of the main motor symptoms of Parkinson disease is bradykinesia which causes movements to become small and slow. The focus of LSVT BIG is on increasing the size of self selected movements and the effort needed to move.
This research-based exercise approach which has been shown to improve motor function and quality of life for people with Parkinson Disease including:
- Faster walking with bigger steps
- Improved balance
- Improved trunk rotation
LSVT BIG is a standardized treatment protocol, which has core exercises as well as functional exercises individualised to the client. Due to the complexity LSVT BIG it can only be taught by a physiotherapist or occupational therapist who is a certified LSVT BIG instructor. LSVT BIG treatment protocol is very strict and is not allowed to vary from:
- 16 sessions: 4 consecutive days a week for 4 weeks
- Individual 1 hour sessions
- Daily homework practice
- Daily carryover exercises
As a certified LSVT BIG instructor I have seen this therapy approach have amazing results for someone with Parkinson Disease especially if their main symptom is bradykinesia. For more information on LSVT BIG and LOUD please visit their website or contact myself.