By Lauren Huet – April 10, 2017
Three Delaware YMCA branches are now offering LIVESTRONG classes. The classes help cancer survivors, patients, and those recently diagnosed with cancer regain their health and strength.
“The program is really focused around decreasing cancer related fatigue, increasing their strength and cardiovascular ability, as well as range of motion and flexibility,” said YMCA Director of Healthy Living and Strategic Partnerships Tricia Jefferson. “Many of the things that cancer survivors really are suffering with and really want to make some strides in.”
“It could be related to the treatments or just appointments and surgeries, but many of it is an actual fatigue on their body that they’re feeling,” said Jefferson. “A decrease of strength, a decrease of energy, and they’re really looking to gain that energy and strength back.”
Exercise is proven to improve cancer survivors’ overall health and increase energy.
“Get those endorphins and really just help them to feel a little bit more energized,” said Jefferson. “Also, increasing that strength and cardiovascular endurance allows them to be able to do those day to day things that they want to do every day in their lives with their family and friends that they feel sometimes that they’re missing out on.”
The LIVESTRONG classes are free.
“That allows the participants to go through the program no charge to them. It’s covered through grant funds, but the Y will also provide up to 4 months of family membership in kind as complementary to the participants,” said Jefferson. “So, they can use the facility outside of class time as well.”
Five classes began in the first week of April. It’s a 12-week program with two 90-minute sessions per week. The classes are available at the Bear-Glasgow YMCA, the Dover YMCA, and the Western Family YMCA. Fall enrollment is open.
“We’re creating an interest list right now and we’d love to hear from anyone who would be interested in participating,” said Jefferson. “We’ll get their information and then make sure when we do design the classes for fall that we try to design one that fits for everyone.”