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How to Move Parkinson’s Therapy Equipment

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Some diseases are simply harder to deal with than others. And we don’t mean that in a physical sense, although for diseases like Parkinson’s, that is very much the case.

This is a progressive disorder that affects the central nervous system and is the second most prevalent degenerative disorder of the CNS after Alzheimer’s.  

The worst thing about Parkinson’s and other diseases that cannot be cured is that once you’ve been diagnosed with it, there is no way back. While there are the myriad physical challenges to deal with, we also cannot overlook the emotional toll it can have on the patient and their loved ones.

But such is life: unfortunate at times. Very unfortunate. But the least we can do when a loved one is diagnosed with PD is to learn to manage it so we can slow its degenerative effects. One way to do that is through exercise.

Investing in Parkinson’s therapy equipment is a cost well worth it. However, it also presents us with a challenge when we need to say, move house and need to bring the equipment with us. Not that there is an issue with that, but the thing is some Parkinson’s exercise equipment is sensitive and needs careful handling.

Gadgets like metronomes and canes should pose little problem, but when dealing with theracycles, rollators, elliptical machines and other equipment of that magnitude, usually the best way to move them is hire a professional mover to do it for you.

And not just any mover. You want a trusted moving company experienced in handling Parkinson’s therapy equipment or medical equipment in general.

When booking your mover, make sure to inquire if the company has this offering in their catalogue of service. Few will turn the job down, so make sure to ask about their track record with regard to moving medical equipment.

However, if you prefer going DIY, fair enough. Here are some tips you might find helpful:

Clean up everything before packing

Just the same way you wouldn’t pack items like clothing or dishware dirty, you should not pack Parkinson’s therapy equipment without giving it a thorough scrub first.

Sanitize everything to get rid of all bacteria and germs (something that should now be second-nature for all of us after the global health pandemic we’ve had to battle through).

Some of the cleaning supplies you could find useful include:

  • All-purpose cleaner
  • Homemade cleaning solution
  • Paper towels
  • Wet wipes
  • Mix of water and white vinegar

Make sure you have all the supplies a professional mover comes with

Since you’ve decided to handle the move yourself, it’s incumbent upon you to find all the proper supplies and packing materials that will ensure your equipment arrives at the destination in mint condition.

Do not compromise on the packing supplies as these can make all the difference.

Here are the materials you might need to have on hand:

  • Bubble wrap
  • Duct tape
  • Sturdy boxes
  • Blankets and newspapers
  • Zip ties
  • Moving dolly (depending on equipment you’re moving)

Tie down moving pieces

If you’re moving a fitness machine like a theracycle or stationary bike, elliptical or treadmill, secure all the movable parts that don’t come apart using ratchet ties or zip ties. This is to prevent the machine from moving when you’re trying to load or unload it.

Furthermore, movable parts that are not secured are a potential hazard that could cause serious injury to anyone carrying or near the machine.

Some machines come with a lock and unlock function to lock them into position so check to see if your model has this feature.

Be generous with the padding

Parkinson’s therapy equipment is delicate and the heavy machines in particular need to be nicely padded as simple mishandling can lead to damage.

In all truth, the heavy equipment should be left to professionals as there’s too much work involved. But if you insist on moving them by your own, it’s important to note that the bigger machines need to be broken down into individual components, which should then be wrapped with a generous amount of padding.

If you still have the instruction manuals with you, the better. Otherwise, you can also move the equipment as is, although this will require: someone to help you do the heavy lifting; and securing the parts with rope before wrapping the equipment in a moving blanket for protection.


David Tobin did his degree in psychology at the University of Edinburgh. He is interested in mental health and well-being.

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