Dance Network Association (DNA) delivers an innovative dance and technology project for people living with Parkinson’s

Join Dance Network Association for their ‘Experience Day’ to hear about the great work they have been able to provide in the community.

04 July 2023


Older female sitting on a chair waving a colourful scarf around whilst smiling

Photo by Rachel Cherry.

In late 2022, DNA approached local charity, Colchester Catalyst, to fund a partnership between DNA and CoDa Dance Company to jointly deliver a 13 week programme testing creative technologies, and new ways of moving to explore the positive impact on Parkinson’s symptoms and participant’s health and well-being. These sessions will culminate in a shared ‘Experience Day’ at the University of Essex on Wednesday 26 July for all to come and play with technologies, see DNA’s classes and hear from both organisations about the great work we have been able to provide in the community. DNA’s CEO Gemma Wright says: “We are extremely grateful that Colchester Catalyst have given to us generously to test out this new way of working. We are excited to work with partner CoDa Dance Company, and share our work with the community on 26 July 2023.”

The summer project is now fully underway with Karen Pratt, ‘Dancing with Joy’ Programme Manager at DNA delivering the Dancing with Parkinson’s classes reflecting so far; “It’s been great to talk about technology this summer season – especially as it’s been a bigger part of our lives since the pandemic. I’m excited to see our group exploring new movements and see how technology can enhance that experience!

DNA’s Dancing with Parkinson’s programme, which has been running since 2016, offers dance and movement sessions which are appropriate for people living with Parkinson’s and anyone living with a neurological condition, heart, or circulatory disease. DNA are proud that this programme not only delivers a high-quality dance experience for the participants but also allows their companions to experience it alongside them if they wish.

The programme has proved to be very beneficial for people living with Parkinson’s, to manage a range of physical and mental health symptoms. Research suggests that the positive benefits associated with dance can slow the progression of Parkinson’s.

Over the past few years DNA has been in conversation with CoDa Dance Company; a professional dance company that specialises in dance and neurology. CoDa Dance Company have delivered vital dance for health work throughout the South East since 2013, providing movement rehabilitation for people with Multiple Sclerosis, Acquired Brain Injury and other neurological disabilities. CoDa Dance Company works with new creative technologies to deepen the significance, accessibility and impact of their work.

CoDa Dance Company say, “people leave our sessions feeling more positive, mobile, and confident, as well as more connected socially.”

With CoDa’s work mirroring DNA’s mission to provide opportunities for people to improve their confidence and physical wellbeing, nurture creativity and independent thinking, and enhance friendships through social interaction, DNA’s interest in working in partnership with CoDa Dance Company arose from wanting to explore how new technologies might further positively support the symptoms of people living with Parkinson’s.

To find out more and to sign up for the ‘Experience Day’ to see this work in action please visit our website: