We know that yoga has numerous health benefits but it’s less known that it can help people going through cancer treatment. For National Yoga Awareness Month, find out more about the health benefits of this ancient mind-body practice.
Cancer treatment can leave you feeling fatigued, disrupt sleep and lead to increased levels of depression and anxiety, as well as other symptoms. Yoga has proven to be effective in improving the mental and physical wellbeing of patients during and after treatment, including improved mood, energy and fitness levels, sleep quality, immune function, feelings of control and wellbeing, reduced inflammation, and management of Lymphoedema.
Yoga may feel like a distant ideal, reserved for green smoothie-sipping Instagram bloggers in Byron Bay or levitating spiritual gurus, but we want you to know that yoga is for EVERYONE, no matter your age or fitness.
At Chris O’Brien Lifehouse, yoga classes happen in the LivingRoom, the home of supportive care and complementary therapies. Here we offer weekly gentle yoga sessions, as well as chair yoga sessions. These classes are specifically designed for those going through or recovering from cancer treatment and are tailored to the personal needs of everyone. One-to-one sessions are also available and encouraged for those requiring a more individualised approach.
Attending yoga at Lifehouse means you have access to the supportive care team that includes integrative oncologists, exercise physiologists, oncology massage practitioners and more. The team will work closely with your treating clinicians.
“After each class, I felt better. My muscle aches and joint pains improved quite quickly, and I started getting stronger, feeling less weak in my body,” said 50-year-old cancer survivor Nicki Polykarpou. Nicki was diagnosed with post-cancer fatigue one year after completing chemotherapy, surgery and radiation therapy.
“I had more energy after a class and, even stranger still, within six weeks, the practice began to change my brain as I began to feel more relaxed and less anxious. Yoga doesn’t sap me of my energy. In fact, after each class I feel I have gained energy and I’m getting stronger. The more I do it, the better I feel.”
Margery Hellman and Lisa Blanch are the yoga therapy specialists in the LivingRoom, running classes and consultations to find the best options for you. For bookings or more information, contact the LivingRoom on 8514 0038 or LivingRoom@lh.org.au.