Did you know that recent studies have shown that exercise following treatment boosts breast cancer survival and reduces the chance of recurrence? Plus it feels good to be active and can also serve as a way to find support and others to bond with. Before choosing an exercise class, get the ok from your doctor and make sure the instructor knows about your health and mobility issues.
I recently started attending yoga classes again, and boy, oh boy, do I feel better. Ahhh, what a shining moment for me! I’m all about being “zen” and relaxing.
Here are some FREE programs to check out:
- LIVESTRONG at the YMCA: This is a FREE 12-week, small group fitness program at various Ys around the country aimed at helping cancer survivors in the transitional period between completion of treatment and the shift to feeling physically and emotionally strong enough to return to a “new normal.” Instructors work to fit the program to each participant’s individual needs. Call 877-236-8820, to see whether there is a location near you.
- Gilda’s Club: These local clubs in 57 locations around the country offer all sorts of FREE support for anyone living with cancer. Most locations have regular exercise classes including gentle yoga, Reiki and Chi Gong. They also offer support and networking groups, workshops, social activities, cooking classes and lectures, including those on nutrition and healthy eating: (The Wellness Community and Gilda’s Club Worldwide have joined forces to become the Cancer Support Community, so some clubs may go by the CSC name instead). See whether there is a club in your area.
- Yoga Classes: Scientific and medical research has shown the beneficial effects of yoga as a complementary therapy to cancer patients in managing depression, anxiety, insomnia, pain, fatigue, healing and more. Yoga Bear connects those touched by cancer with studios offering FREE or donation-based classes in their communities. They also provide online yoga videos and mediation pod-casts for those who can’t leave home. Find a local studio in your area!
Good to Know
- Cook for Your Life, a New York City-based non-profit teaching “healthy cooking to people touched by cancer” has a website with FREE videos, recipes and cooking tips. Find comforting healing foods, recipes to combat the side effects of chemo and much more. They also offer FREE on-site cooking classes if you are located in New York City.