Bryan Hill, 36, is a registered nurse living with Parkinson’s in Seattle, Washington. He’s an active Team Fox member training for American Ninja Warrior, NBC's obstacle-course competition, to raise awareness of Parkinson’s disease. He’s also a volunteer in the Foundation’s landmark study, the Parkinson’s Progression Markers Initiative (PPMI). He created a video to encourage everyone in his network to join him and participate in the study that could change everything. Watch the video above then learn about Bryan’s story.
I was 31 and getting ready to marry my wife when I was diagnosed with young-onset Parkinson’s disease (PD). Opening up about a Parkinson’s diagnosis at this age was an obstacle in and of itself. But doing so has proven an empowering way to create awareness for the disease while supporting my family to live an honest and fulfilling life — all while opening doors to connect with others who walk similar roads.
I was no stranger to PD prior to my diagnosis. As an adolescent, I supported my mother who had Parkinson's. With this knowledge and my background as a registered nurse, I braved my diagnosis with mindfulness and movement as medicine, and quickly built up a daily regimen of high-intensity interval workouts.
Not too long after, I found myself on American Ninja Warrior following the mentorship of fellow Team Fox supporter Jimmy Choi (retired American Ninja Warrior)! Maintaining a fine balance of confidence and humility, I pursue this venture in part as an opportunity to represent other young adults with this disease which can be psychologically isolating.
I heard about the PPMI study through an email from The Michael J. Fox Foundation. I quickly joined the online part of the study. It’s free, quick, painless and has the potential to change the landscape in the search for a cure. That’s why I decided to make a video to reach a new audience with the hope they would join the study. It’ll take all of us to get to the cure we need.
People recently diagnosed with Parkinson’s can play an invaluable role in PPMI. Learn more and connect with the study team.
The online part of PPMI is open to anyone over age 18 in the U.S. Join the study that could change everything.
Watch an NBC Seattle affiliate clip to learn more about Bryan’s story.
Bryan and his wife, Jules, at The Michael J. Fox Foundation's MVP Awards Ceremony.
Bryan at American Ninja Warrior in Texas.
Bryan sporting Team Fox gear.