'The thing about exercise, is when you feel like it the least, is when you need it the most'. #movementismedicine
I am a qualified Cancer Exercise & Rehabilitation Specialist and Pink Ribbon Breast Cancer Rehab Instructor. I’m also a volunteer exercise specialist at The Hospice in the Weald, Tunbridge Wells and have run exercise groups for Nuffield Health.
Is exercise safe?
Exercise is not only safe, but it is now widely recommended that people who have cancer or who are recovering from treatment use exercise as part of their therapy.
There are many reasons to be active when you have cancer:
Treatment side effects including fatigue, lymphoedema, muscle loss, weight gain, bone density loss and many others can all be improved with exercise.
Exercise can help rebuild your confidence and manage anxiety and stress.
Getting fit BEFORE surgery or treatment can help you recover faster and have better outcomes.
Around 70% of people with cancer have surgery. It's vital to do post-op rehabilitation exercises as part of your recovery.
You may have many questions about what’s safe, how to exercise when having treatment or when to resume exercise after surgery. Even if you were very fit before your diagnosis and treatment, it can be a shock to discover how unfit you can become in a very short period of time.
Rehabilitation exercises will play an important part in the recovery process, to rebuild your body again and prevent injuries further down the line.
But it can be very difficult...
Many people feel vulnerable and low in confidence and this affects all aspects of your life. It’s also estimated that 70% of people undergoing cancer treatment suffer from fatigue. Research has shown that being active is the best treatment for ‘cancer related fatigue’.
Whatever your lifestyle and needs I can help you find strategies and ways to exercise that work best for you and your stage of treatment.
Before - During - After
I’m happy to work with you at any stage of your cancer treatment – before surgery or treatment, immediately post-surgery (within days of discharge), during treatment or at any time in the future during your recovery and stage of cancer treatment
There’s is a growing practice of ‘pre-habilitation’ to get people physically better prepared before they have surgery. You may find your Doctor wants you to exercise before you have major surgery as this can improve the outcomes and recovery.
During chemotherapy and radiotherapy, it is still possible to be active and it can help you manage some of the side effects of treatment. Even on days when you're fatigued, some gentle home based movements or a short walk can make you feel so much better.
If you’ve had surgery, you will need to do rehabilitation exercises for the area of your body that has been affected, this might be shoulder and chest exercises after breast cancer or abdominal after bowel or gynae cancers.
How does it work?
I offer 1:1 cancer specific exercise sessions, rehabilitation and clinical Pilates via video, working closely with you in the comfort and safety of your own home.
I will liaise with your clinical/oncology team or surgeon especially if you're still undergoing treatment.
A typical programme could involve:
Specific rehabilitation exercises after surgery
Development of a general conditioning and fitness plan to do before, during or after treatment
Providing reassurance and structure about how to exercise safely given your condition
Coaching to help you work through your changing relationship with movement
Returning to more competitive sport or activities
Using heart rate training or other intuitive methods to monitor exercise and provide structure
Appropriate movement, activity and exercise can help almost every chronic health condition and is the most powerful tool you have for your recovery.
I have a unique combination of skills and qualifications and offer very specialist services. My pricing structure reflects my qualifications, 25 years of experience and continual investment in training and courses.