Exercise class aids recovery
Women who are experiencing or have experienced breast cancer are being encouraged to attend a free exercise programme run by the YWCA.
The associated physical effects of breast cancer can be extremely challenging. Side effects from surgery can include physical discomfort, immobility and emotional vulnerability.
The YWCA has facilitated the Encore programme since 2005. The eight-week programme uses gentle exercise and healthy lifestyle information to increase strength, flexibility and blood flow and reduce the effects of lymphoedema (painful swelling), that some experience.
The programme works to relieve these problems through gentle floor exercises, breathing exercises, stretching and pool-based exercises.
Many of the women who deliver the programme are breast cancer survivors and past participants of Encore.
Funding comes from The Ted and Mollie Carr Endowment Trust.
Winnie Laban has been through the programme.
‘‘I just think Encore’s a fantastic programme, I would recommend it for anyone. It was an opportunity for me to be with other women who were breast cancer survivors, and I looked forward to going each week.’’
Facilitator Lynne Walker says the programme is unique because ‘‘it’s such an extensive, comprehensive package. It’s not just about exercise ... it’s also about sharing information, learning about self-care and being in a safe, supportive environment while having fun.’’
The next YWCA Encore programme for east and central Auckland starts on October 25 at Swimtastic in St Johns. Registration is essential because medical approval is required.
Helping hand: The Encore programme is designed for breast cancer survivors to help women combat the physical effects and aid in their recovery.