About Punch 4 Parkinson’s
P4P Motivation & Story
Punch 4 Parkinson’s is the brain-child of professional boxing manager Ryan Roach, who was inspired by boxing great Freddie Roach (his uncle), as well as civil rights activist Jesse Jackson, both who suffer from Parkinson’s. Freddie was diagnosed with Parkinson’s at the age of 27 and credits the physical nature of his job (he trains professional boxers) and the hand-eye coordination of the sport for keeping his symptoms in-check. When Jesse Jackson was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2017, Freddie, who had been battling the disease for 3 decades by then, reached out to invite Jackson to train with him.
“When he got here, he could barely climb the steps to the ring,” the elder Roach has said of Jackson. “After 10 days of training, he wanted to race me.” Both men attribute boxing with offsetting some of the devastating effects of Parkinson’s disease.
After seeing first-hand the devastating effects of Parkinson’s disease and the therapeutic benefits of boxing workouts, Ryan Roach launched Punch for Parkinson’s. The organization helps to ease the burden of those affected by Parkinson’s Disease and turns them into “Warriors” by combating symptoms through the sport of boxing. At P4P, trainers create immersive programs featuring non-combat boxing, training, and exercise for those diagnosed with the disease.
Since 2015, Punch 4 Parkinson’s has raised over $1,000,000 and supported over 400 Warriors that battle Parkinson’s each day. The annual cost per Warrior for boxing support is close to $5,000. This is a significant burden on individuals, many of whom are close to retirement age, and it is not covered by insurance. The organization aligns Parkinson patients with a certified boxing training facility and covers costs associated with exercise.
Ryan Roach — President & Founder
Born into the sport of boxing through his family ties, Ryan Roach founded Punch 4 Parkinson’s (P4P) after seeing firsthand how boxing workouts could reduce symptoms of Parkinson’s disease (PD) and help those suffering from Parkinson’s live a more normal life. Ryan is nephew of hall of fame boxing coach Freddie Roach, who is afflicted with the disease. With a strong philanthropic moral compass, Ryan leveraged his expertise in the field to start up P4P and offer support to the PD community.
Ryan is also a Lieutenant in the Boston Fire Department and a successful professional Boxing Manager at Fighter Locker. Prior to this, Ryan spent 8 active years with the United States Coast Guard and an additional 4 in the reserves. Currently residing in Boston with his wife, 2 children, and 2 dogs; he loves spending time with his family and helping the community.