SteF (S) and Lisa Oei (L) could be in the cast of a comedy show,” I thought as I started my first PD-Connect™ class via Zoom. Dr. Lisa Oei, physical therapist and Parkinson’s wellness coach has taught a variety of Parkinson’s classes with SteF, co-founder and certified fitness trainer. Lisa’s non-profit organization PD-Connect™ serves Parkinson’s people in Marin County.

Exercises called imaginary jump rope, count the squats, what is your favorite snack, and catch a tissue are a few of the crazy activities you might find yourself doing at PD-Connect™ to keep fit. Not only are the exercises unique, the exchange between the two trainers is entertaining. Their exercise is based on  PWR!Moves®, a Parkinson’s-specific skill training program to maintain or restore skills that deteriorate and interfere with everyday movements. 

One of the trainers may be seated while the other is standing during exercises to illustrate variations on the exercise depending on the attendee’s agility. There is no mat work. Some weight work is included (cans from the cupboard are fine). Their humor helps the class move along quickly.

Since they transferred their PD exercise classes in Marin County to Zoom, their class is now accessible to people with PD from all over the Bay Area. The class I took at 1:30 on Friday had about 50 participants.

PD-Connect™ relies on donations to provide classes for people with Parkinson’s.

“Nice variety.” said friends who took the class with me. “Those two [S and L] are SO cute! Great way to get me moving way more than my comfort zone! I’ll try another one!”


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