Good Deed: Echelon bike donation will help Pedaling for Parkinson’s program expansion

Echelon recently donated 20 Echelon EX 4S bikes to help expand the North River Family YMCA's Pedaling for Parkinson's program.

Pedaling for Parkinson's is designed to improve the quality of life for Parkinson's patients and their caregivers, according to a news release. The program focuses on physical activity to help alleviate some symptoms of the disease, such as tremors, stiff muscles, slow movement, trouble balancing or walking. The program also educates patients, caregivers and the public on the benefits of maintaining an active lifestyle after a diagnosis, the news release stated.

The YMCA currently serves about 78 Parkinson's patients through its Pedaling for Parkinson's and Rock Steady Boxing programs.

"We are so grateful to receive the bikes," Baron Herdelin-Doherty, president and CEO for the YMCA of Metropolitan Chattanooga, said in the release. "We share a united goal with Echelon in raising awareness of Parkinson's and making programs like Pedaling for Parkinson's available to more individuals."

Jama Oliver, an Echelon fitness instructor, knows the value of exercise and community.

"My personal experience in watching my mother fight Parkinson's disease for 21 years has reinforced many times over the importance of a step, a ride, a breath, to take on our hardest challenges.

"We are privileged to be able to be one small source of support for the resilient persons affected by Parkinson's," she said.

Cara Standifer