Long Islanders battle Parkinson's Disease through NYIT boxing program

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Long Islanders with Parkinson's Disease have learned to utilize a noncontact boxing program called Rock Steady to counteract the effects of the neurodegenerative disease. The program, which is housed in the New York Institute of Technology in Old Westbury, was founded by former Indiana prosecutor Scott Newman after he was diagnosed with Parkinson's in 2006. So far the Long Island branch of the program has helped nearly 90 patients since coming to NYIT in September.

Boxers strengthen core muscles and improve flexibility during
(Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Boxers strengthen core muscles and improve flexibility during stretches at Rock Steady Boxing at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine's Academic Health Care Center/Wellness Center.

Boxers strengthen core muscles and improve flexibility during
(Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Boxers strengthen core muscles and improve flexibility during stretches at Rock Steady Boxing at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine's Academic Health Care Center/Wellness Center. In the foreground, center, is Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills.

Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills sharpens boxing skills
(Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills sharpens boxing skills with focus mitts at Rock Steady Boxing at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine's Academic Health Care Center/ Wellness Center in Old Westbury May 3, 2017.

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Left, NYIT Physical Therapist Kyle Corbett assists during
(Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Left, NYIT Physical Therapist Kyle Corbett assists during a boxing exercise at Rock Steady Boxing at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine's Academic Health Care Center/Wellness Center.

Rosilind Drukker works out at Rock Steady Boxing
(Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Rosilind Drukker works out at Rock Steady Boxing at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine's Academic Health Care Center/ Wellness Center in Old Westbury May 3, 2017.

Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills works out at
(Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills works out at Rock Steady Boxing at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine's Academic Health Care Center/ Wellness Center in Old Westbury May 3, 2017. Focus mitts, which can improve agility and coordination, is a common activity included in Rock Steady Boxing classes.

Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills lifts weights as
(Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills lifts weights as part of her workout at Rock Steady Boxing at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine's Academic Health Care Center/ Wellness Center in Old Westbury May 3, 2017.

Boxers surround NYIT Physical Therapist Kyle Corbett in
(Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Boxers surround NYIT Physical Therapist Kyle Corbett in a group cheer at Rock Steady Boxing at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine's Academic Health Care Center/Wellness Center.

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Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills works out at
(Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills works out at Rock Steady Boxing at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine's Academic Health Care Center/ Wellness Center in Old Westbury May 3, 2017.

Two boxers work on gait training during a
(Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Two boxers work on gait training during a morning warm-up at Rock Steady Boxing at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine's Academic Health Care Center/Wellness Center.

Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills, coached by NYIT
(Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills, coached by NYIT Physical Therapist Kyle Corbett, stretches during cool down at Rock Steady Boxing at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine's Academic Health Care Center/ Wellness Center in Old Westbury May 3, 2017.

Boxers stretch at the end of a Rock
(Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Boxers stretch at the end of a Rock Steady Boxing NYIT class at Rock Steady Boxing at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine's Academic Health Care Center/Wellness Center.

Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills works out at
(Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills works out at Rock Steady Boxing at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine's Academic Health Care Center/ Wellness Center in Old Westbury May 3, 2017.  Multi-tasking, as seen here, helps boxers improve agility and response. Here Drukker catches a ball while also focusing on gait and balance.

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Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills performs a rigorous
(Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills performs a rigorous battle rope exercise at Rock Steady Boxing at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine's Academic Health Care Center/ Wellness Center in Old Westbury May 3, 2017.

Second-year NYIT physical therapy student Karl Arabian acts
(Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Second-year NYIT physical therapy student Karl Arabian acts as a cornerman to Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills as she works out at Rock Steady Boxing at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine's Academic Health Care Center/ Wellness Center in Old Westbury May 3, 2017.   

Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills leaves her morning
(Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Rosilind Drukker of Dix Hills leaves her morning class, ready to take on the day, with an improved sense of physical and mental well-being after a workout at Rock Steady Boxing at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine's Academic Health Care Center/ Wellness Center in Old Westbury May 3, 2017.

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