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  • Writer's pictureNed Neuhaus

Row to Slow Parkinson's

Updated: Feb 14, 2023


Meters Rowed: 0

Meters to Complete: 1,000,000

Crazy Friends to row with: 2


Exercise is the single best thing one can do to help mitigate the symptoms and potentially the progression of Parkinson’s. I was looking for something extra challenging to do in 2020, and thanks to fellow Rock Steady Boxing coach, Jojo McDuffie, I found it!

Each year Rock Steady Boxing holds a worldwide coaches conference. I have met some tremendous people at these events. I was fortunate to meet Jojo at the inaugural event in Philadelphia. He and I ran the Rocky Run together up the famous stairs! He is a wonderful asset to the Rock Steady community. When he told me last fall that he was going to row ONE MILLION METERS to raise awareness for PD in 2020, I thought he was crazy! He is in amazing physical condition, is younger than me and doesn’t have Parkinson’s, so I immediately thought it would not be possible for me.

(Jojo says "you can do it!")

Row to Slow Parkinson’s is born

A few minutes later, my competitive side started to take over and I texted my RSB Peoria friend, Katie Kleist. I told her I was going to do it and challenged her to come up with a goal for her. She immediately said, “Yes!” And so Row to Slow PD was born, even though neither of us had ever rowed more than 800m in one setting.

This will be a year long event for us. Not only will it push us physically, but also will require extreme discipline to row almost every day in addition to our regular exercise routines, all the while navigating around “on” times during the day when our symptoms are least impactful. Katie’s challenge is even more significant as she juggles her young children’s calendars. We can use all the support and encouragement that our friends and family can muster!

Here we go!

Fast forward a few months of training later (not nearly enough), and here we are in January 2020. Now it gets real!

(Ned and Katie training for the Row to Slow Parkinson's at RSB Peoria)

I will be rowing on average 5 days per week to keep up with my pace to get to ONE MILLION METERS before December 31. I will update this page with our progress during the year.

Additionally, check out Katie’s blog “Exercising Parkinson’s”:

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