Key to exercise and fitness for cancer patients – The Gisborne Herald

Published on April 30, 2022 12:16

IT’S TIME TO MOVE: Fitness gurus Brian Horwell and Michele Rennie are the coordinators of new exercise classes now available for cancer patients. Caro Deutsch (right) from the Gisborne-East Coast Cancer Society says cancer patients can benefit greatly from regular physical activity. Photo by Paul Rickard

Cancer patients have the opportunity to take advantage of free exercise classes taught by professionals working in conjunction with the Gisborne-East Coast Cancer Society.

The program consists of separate exercise classes for men and women with two one-hour classes per week for 10 weeks starting in early May.

Exercise is an important part of cancer treatment, said Heidi Stander, head of the cancer society sector.

Research shows that regular exercise can greatly improve physical and mental health at every stage of treatment.

“Even if you weren’t active before your cancer diagnosis, an exercise program that meets your unique needs can help you move safely and successfully.”

Tane Toa, the men’s exercise group, will be led by Brian Horwell of Primal Fitness.

Wahine Toa, the exercise and wellness group for women, will be led by cardio trainer Michelle Rennie.

Classes consist of small groups and no previous gym experience is required.

Wahine Toa is funded by Trust Tairawhiti and Tane Toa is funded by cancer society benefactor and fundraiser Daryl Gowers.

“We are thrilled to have these funders on board,” Ms. Stander said.

“Without their generosity, the Cancer Society would not be able to continue supporting people living with and beyond cancer.

Mr. Horwell owns and runs Prime Fitness and has worked in the fitness industry for 25 years beginning in his native Britain.

He has worked in all areas of the industry including sports coaching, fitness coaching, university lectures, mental health, with obese and prostate cancer patients through Sport Gisborne-Tairawhiti and the Cancer Society.

“The benefit and correlation between physical activity and cancer recovery is huge,” he said.

He was hoping to have 10 men in his programs, and Ms Rennie is hoping for 10 to 15 women for hers.

She has a background in sport and exercise science.

She started in the industry with Green Prescription for Sport Waikato for 15 years before returning to Gisborne for a similar role at Sport Gisborne-Tairawhiti.

His next career move was to start his own business at Cardio Coach working with clients of all abilities.

Ms. Rennie offers a varied and holistic program and will host an exercise session each week.

The other session will feature a range of specialists offering restorative yoga, nutrition, women’s health and meditation. People are encouraged to call the company at 867-1795 for more information.

About Shirley A. Tamayo

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