Fit­ness to fight can­cer bat­tles

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Health -

YOUNG can­cer pa­tients will be the re­cip­i­ents of a new spe­cialised ex­er­cise pro­gram to be launched at Sir Charles Gaird­ner Hos­pi­tal this month.

The pi­lot pro­gram has been de­vel­oped for pa­tients aged 15 to 27 by Can­cer Coun­cil WA as a re­sult of a part­ner­ship with the team at the WA Youth Can­cer Ser­vice, a statewide ser­vice based at Charles Gaird­ner.

Can­cer Coun­cil in­for­ma­tion and sup­port ser­vices di­rec­tor Sandy McKier­nan said the pro­gram was a good op­por­tu­nity for young can­cer pa­tients based on the suc­cess of Can­cer Coun­cil’s long-run­ning Life Now pro­gram.

“We know Life Now ex­er­cise pro­grams, which are run by an ac­cred­ited ex­er­cise phys­i­ol­o­gist and are tai­lored to the spe­cific needs of each par­tic­i­pant, de­liver re­sults and ben­e­fits for par­tic­i­pants,” she said.

“We know young peo­ple are more likely to ex­er­cise in a group of like-minded and sim­i­larly aged in­di­vid­u­als rather than join­ing one of the es­tab­lished classes.

“We also know that ex­er­cise is the best way to sup­port recovery from can­cer treat­ment.”

Re­cent re­search shows young can­cer pa­tients ex­pe­ri­ence a sig­nif­i­cant dis­rup­tion to their phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity lev­els and qual­ity of life dur­ing treat­ment.

Sam Stacy, a 21year-old from Trigg, was di­ag­nosed with Burkitts lym­phoma last year.

He said ex­er­cise played a vi­tal role in his recovery from ag­gres­sive treat­ment that led to him los­ing 14kg as well as the abil­ity to walk for a pe­riod of time.

“I’ve al­ready seen how much ex­er­cise helps in re­cov­er­ing from can­cer treat­ment both phys­i­cally and men­tally,” he said.

He is now in re­mis­sion and re­cov­er­ing well.

“I am get­ting fit and gain­ing weight,” he said. “I am in the spe­cial­ist gym once a week, work­ing out at home four times a week, swim­ming two or three times a week, and run my own small fit­ness club.”

Places in the pro­gram are lim­ited. Call 13 11 20 for more de­tails.

Claire Mun­sie and Sam Stacy train in the Sir Charles Gaird­ner Hos­pi­tal gym.

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