GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – Rock Steady Boxing is a program to help people deal with Parkinson’s disease. The classes give people the tools they need to fight the disorder.

ECU Health’s Wellness Center in Greenville recently started a Rock Steady Boxing class on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Justin Mendoza is one participant in the Rock Steady Boxing Program at ECU Health. For the past three months, he has attended the boxing classes. Mendoza has Parkinson’s Disease, diagnosed about five years ago.

“Going somewhere where someone has the same thing you have makes you more comfortable,” Mendoza said.

Mendoza added that the classes help a lot.

“They help a lot with coordination. Be able to function, be able to walk better,” Mendoza said. “Move better with what you got.”

Rock Steady Boxing involves regular exercise like walking and weightlifting and mixes in non-contact boxing. Benefits include better balance, which means fewer falls, which can lead to more confidence and a higher quality of life.

“Boxing focuses on balance, agility, focuses on muscle power, mental focus, it focuses on strength training, it focuses on rhythm on everything that is very important for those who have Parkinson’s,” ECU Health Wellness Center Lead Exercise Specialist Kiara Robins said.

Rock Steady Boxing is needed in Greenville, Robins said.

“The closest one is actually in New Bern. So, we wanted to actually bring it to Greenville because there is a high population here locally,” Robins said.

Mendoza agreed with Robins.

“We’re the ones that can’t travel or have trouble traveling. It’s a lot easier and a lot closer,” Mendoza said. “It makes it easier. It makes it more comfortable. We need it to function.”

Mendoza said he looks forward to his next class.

“It’s a different feeling when you can function each and every day,” he said.

To participate, you must have a primary care provider complete the physician medical release form. To register, call the ECU Health Wellness Center – Greenville at 252-847-6501.

To learn more about Rock Steady Boxing in Greenville, click here.