People who are living with Parkinson’s are being encouraged to try a walking tennis session in Prestwich this summer.

Walking tennis sessions are open to all ages and abilities from the Parkinson’s community as the game is played on smaller courts with specially designed equipment to give players more time to react.

Sessions take place from 11am to 12pm on a Thursday at St Mary's Park and at the same time every Tuesday at Wythenshawe Park.

One participant, Julia Mansfield, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s more than 10 years ago, said that before these sessions she hadn’t played for around 50 years and now they are a key part of her weekly exercise.

She said: “Over the past nine months I have definitely improved along with all the other regulars.

“I would recommend it to anyone with or without Parkinson’s who wants to improve their overall health, keep cheerful and motivated, increase their skills and share time with a really friendly and supportive group of people.

“The coaches are excellent - skilled and encouraging.

“Even on a rainy day there’s nothing quite like the thwack of the ball hitting the racquet to improve my mood and ensure an endorphin rush.”

This style of tennis allows players to let the ball bounce twice, but prohibits any running or jumping to make it easier and reduce the risk of falls.

Carers and relatives are also welcome to attend and the first walking tennis session is free.

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Andy Moss, head of parks at We Do Tennis, said: “We are really excited to be bringing walking tennis to the Parkinson’s community, as we know the physical and mental health benefits that active therapy can provide.

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“Walking tennis can help people with Parkinson’s to improve their mobility, flexibility, and balance in a fun and social environment”

Helen Sturman, North England area development manager at Parkinson’s UK, said: “Our local groups and networks have an important part to play for people in Greater Manchester.

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“It is vital that we can support everyone affected by Parkinson’s, so that together, we can move towards everyone with the condition feeling empowered to take control of their life with Parkinson’s.”

To join a We Do Tennis session, visit or contact

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