BUFFALO, NY (WIVB) As Buffalo’s Representative for 12 years, Jack Quinn never lost a congressional race. Now he’s in a different kind of fight against Parkinson’s Disease. His therapy is boxing.
“I don’t know the medicine behind it. I don’t need to know the medicine behind it, because it works,” said Quinn, 68, who notes that medical theories indicate the hand-eye coordination used in boxing stimulates the body to release dopamine, something that would be hindered when a person has Parkinson’s.
If you don’t believe it, ask Jack Quinn’s brother, Jeff Quinn, who has been doing this therapy for his own Parkinson’s for over two years now. “Pretty much, all my symptoms that I had have gone away, with the tremors, my foot would drag, my arm wouldn’t swing when I walked.”
Parkison’s Boxing on Delaware Avenue in Kenmore opened about four years ago.”We improve quality of life, and that’s basically what this affects; your balance, your cognitive skills, your hand-eye, your reaction,” said owner, Dean Eoannou.
Just last week, Independent Health agreed to cover this kind of therapy for Parkinson’s patients. “So. I think it’s finally recognized for what it’s capable of doing to helping these people,” said Eoannou.
Jack Quinn didn’t tell most of his friends or relatives he had Parkinson’s for three years, but now that it’s out, he believed all the attention might help others. “There’s a woman here right now, just came up to thank me. I never met her, she never met me, but she said my husband is here because of what we read in the paper this weekend.”
Quinn is even going to this Friday’s Night of Hope for the Parkinson’s Foundation at the Millenium Hotel in Cheektowaga. “I think there’s hundreds and hundreds of people who are living with Parkinson’s and they think it’s either a death sentence they’ll never overcome or they’ll never do anything about it because there’s no cure. It’s true there’s no cure, but there’s lots that can be done.”