September is National Yoga Month, a month dedicated to bringing awareness to the health benefits of yoga. Lots of yoga activities are scheduled this month to celebrate. One program I heard of that I wanted to share is a free week of yoga! Over 2,200 yoga studios across the country are offering a week of free yoga classes. The free classes are being coordinated by the nonprofit Yoga Health Foundation. To find a participating studio in your area and for more information, check out Yoga Health Foundation’s website.
Another resource we have discussed in CURE is Yoga Bear, a nonprofit that houses free yoga videos on its website and connects cancer patients and survivors with the yoga community.
The health benefits of yoga for cancer patients and survivors are being studied more and more. Earlier this year, a couple of yoga studies were published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. One study showed some impact of yoga on inflammation and fatigue in breast cancer survivors. The other study concluded that yoga improved quality of life for some patients undergoing radiation. While a lot is unknown about the specific connections, it’s encouraging to see the practice benefitting people with cancer both physically and mentally.
In CURE, we have covered the health benefits of yoga for cancer patients and survivors in articles such as “Bending the Rules”
and as “Yoga Helps Survivors with Fatigue.”
At ASCO this year, I talked to Dr. Karen Mustian of the University of Rochester Medical Center, who I interviewed in 2012 about yoga and fatigue. Mustian said she had just received funding for another yoga study, which she hopes will shed more light on the connections between yoga and quality of life for cancer survivors. Stay tuned for more coverage of these studies in CURE!