Saturday, March 28, 2015

Monday, March 23, 2015

Newsday Article 3/17/15

BY JOHN HANC Special to Newsday
Strength for Life, an exercise program for cancer patients, was created in response to the death of a mentor. 

A little more than a decade ago, Jacqui Errico and Debbie Hughes were working as personal trainers for Evelyn Knapp, the Bay Shorebased co-founder of Personal Training Institute, a chain of oneon-one training studios. When Knapp was diagnosed with breast cancer, Errico recalls, “it took everyone off guard. She was the epitome of fitness when you looked at her.” 

Knapp continued to train through her treatment. “She said it was the only thing that gave her a sense of control in a situation that was out of control,” Errico recalls. Knapp also obtained one of the first certifications then available for fitness professionals in dealing with cancer patients. “At the time, the attitude was still bed rest was best,” Errico said. “She wanted us all to learn how to train cancer patients.” 

SPECIAL CERTIFICATION When Knapp died in 2005, at age 40, Errico and Hughes followed through on her wishes and earned specialized certification in training cancer patients. They also went out and delivered the message, speaking to local support groups about the benefits of physical activity to those battling the disease. What they found was an interest but a lack of opportunities, so the two trainers began holding regular hourlong strengthtraining programs geared to cancer patients. They started in a basement, moved to a Curves in St. James and then to Stony Brook University Hospital. Now they offer weekly classes at seven locations in Nassau and Suffolk (the eight-week winter program is wrapping up this week; the spring session starts in April). The classes, which are free, involve a half-hour of standing, resistance-training movements — using primarily resistance bands — followed by 15 minutes of core exercises and 15 minutes of stretching. 

In the eight years since the program started, the number of individuals in the program has risen from a handful to a total of about 50 in the seven winter classes. Most of the participants are women over age 50. 

Meanwhile, views on exercise for cancer patients have evolved. Research suggests that cancer patients who were physically active during and after treatment had less fatigue and nausea, improved blood flow and an improved quality of life. Now, the American Cancer Society recommends physical activity for patients (although there are, of course, caveats, depending on the type of cancer, treatment and health ofthe person, so patients should check with their oncologists before starting any exercise program). 

SUPPORTIVE ENVIRONMENT Word is getting out about Strength for Life. Michelle Steinberg of Woodbury, 59, who was diagnosed with Stage 3 breast cancer in January 2014, saw a flier for the program in her doctor’s waiting room. “I was excited about going,” says Steinberg. “I was looking at it as another avenue that could help.’ ” 

She started in October, after her treatment was complete, and has been taking the classes weekly at World Gym in Wantagh. Steinberg likes the social environment of the class and the value of interacting with fellow patients and with Errico. 

“You’re with other people in similar circumstances, so there’s an automatic common bond,” she says. “And you know there’s someone there that’s trying to help you.”

 For more information,

Thank you John Hanc!!!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Ways to help support the Strength for Life programs...

Our annual recognition event will be held on April 26...

Here is the generous sponsorship form - 
c'mon where else can you get a horse for $500. 

Seriously, IF you can share this with a business owner, friend or family and join us we would be forever grateful.

And you will know how your $$$ are spent...
FREE exercise classes an wellness retreats for cancer patient/survivors
.....and soon to be rolled out Nutrition seminars.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

LI2 Day Team "STRENGTH FOR LIFE" now forming - join us and save $25

It's going to be awesome, and remember you are helping Strength for Life 
continue on our mission of providing programs at NO Cost. 

Bless you!!!

Register as a WALKER between Feb. 25th and March 11th (before midnight) and pay $50! That's a $25 dollar savings. The registration fee will increase to $75 on March 12th

"Alone we can do so little; 

together we can do so much." 

~Helen Keller