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    • #21483
      Mima
      Participant

      I was a dedicated lap swimmer until 2 years ago when I was doing the breast stroke and realized my legs were not swimming.  I barely made it to the side of the pool trying not to go under.  I only have access to a pool in summer. I do 1000 (non consecutive) kicks while holding the side of the pool.  I have tried a noodle and a kick board but neither one keeps me from going under. Does anyone know how I can swim again or are those days gone?

    • #21498
      Mickeal Hargrove
      Participant

      Try going to a water physical training, or Re-hab.  That’s just what they are there for.  I myself have gone to CHRISTUS Mother Frances Hospital for mine.  Good luck to you.

    • #21508
      Robin Kanarek
      Participant

      I have been a swimmer all my life, and even competed in the swimming portion of triathlons. Therefore, it was very disturbing to enter the pool three summers ago and discover I could no longer make it from the middle of the pool to the sides. My experiences were similar to those you describe: My legs just wouldn’t move. I also tried a kick board and other flotation devices. Also, tried swimming in lakes and ponds, and have friends swim with me. I discussed the problem with professionals (swim coaches; personal trainers physicians) who had no explanation.

      Two summers ago, I started taking Sinamet and my ability to swim returned – although I am much slower than before and my endurance is lower. I don’t know if the Sinamet has anything to do with my ability to swim. I don’t want to stop taking Sinamet to find out. Please let me know if you find any others who have had this problem. Good luck!

    • #21669
      Ellen Roth
      Participant

      Yep, losing my ability to swim was one of my first symptoms of PD! I love lake swimming, and was starting to feel unsafe, so I bought a triathlon neoprene swimming vest! It won’t totally keep me afloat, but it does help with buoyancy and it doesn’t chafe my arms. I’m still pretty limited in my swimming ability, but at least I can go out and try it without worrying! Like you, it’s the legs that aren’t working right, so I’ve been slowing down my stroke (either crawl or breast) and mentally focusing on my legs which seems to help. The one stroke I can do, is elementary backstroke. I think it’s because both of your arms and your legs are doing the same thing ( like breast stroke lying on your back) at the same time. My other limitation is my position in the water, and I think that my legs “sink” primarily because of my back being for flexed and rounded.

    • #21671
      Mima
      Participant

      Thanks to you who responded. I have tried flotation devices but to no avail. I am only taking selegiline and am reluctant to take anything else.  I continue doing flutter kicks while holding the edge of the pool but just lately I find my strength is waning and the kicks getting even less coordinated. I try imagining the beats of a metronome but my legs are going wild   Beating to a different drummer as it were!!!!!     Good luck to all.

    • #21679
      Susan Swint
      Participant

      I’ve been a relaxed lap swimmer, primarily side stroke and crawl, since the age of 3. I was diagnosed with Stage 1 five, years ago with right side tremor; still only on rasagiline and in a drug trial. Last summer I realized I could no longer reliably maintain my orientation in the water and developed instant cramps in my feet if doing a flutter kick. I no longer get in the water alone, stay in the shallow end, and am limited to side stroke on left side only plus breast stroke with arms alone. Dance therapy has helped me with rhythymic movement, though.

    • #21680
      Jose
      Participant

      Only a fair swimmer to start. Diagnosed with PD stage 1 1/2 year ago. I have the same experience, cannot move arms/legs quickly and rhythmically enough to stay afloat.

    • #21684
      William R
      Participant

      I was a breast stroke swimmer in high school. I have had Parkinson’s disease since 2013. Recently started swimming again and found with the breast stroke and side stroke I feel so uncoordinated that I stand still in the water. It is quite disheartening. I can still do the crawl fairly easily and can move thru the water with some speed, but I feel like a fish out of the water with the other two (n0 pun intended). At any rate, it is good to hear of others peoples concerns as well. Sometimes  I feel like I’m all alone out there. Thank you all for sharing.

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