Saturday, May 30, 2009

Yoga for Recovery: Check Out YogaBear

Image of Yoga Bear from TwitterImage of Yoga Bear

Last summer, while recovering from my third major abdominal surgery in four years, I re-discovered yoga via FitTV's Namaste Yoga, a multi-skill-level yoga practice created by Canadian Kate Potter.

I was too weak from the combination of surgical recovery and chemo to do much more than the warm-up/cool-down and meditation portions of each show. At first, I felt like I was in the CT scanner (breathe in--hold your breath--breathe out!) Concentrating on breathing while doing active poses was tough at first, but each day's small improvements intrigued me enough that I quickly sought out the entire Namaste series on DVD and added them to my collection. I'm still very much a yoga beginner, but I'm now able to do a physical yoga practice every day, and although my practices have to be short, some days I manage as long as 15 minutes of active poses. My daily yoga practice is centering, calming and energizing at the same time. It is a way to get my active life back, and get stronger from the inside out.

Today on Twitter, I found out about YogaBear, a not-for-profit corporation which links yoga teachers and yoga studios across the US with cancer survivors. Via Yoga Bear's program, this network of teachers offers cancer survivors free yoga classes. If you're a yoga studio, yoga teacher or cancer survivor, visit YogaBear to make the connection, find and renew your inner energy!

You can join several fundraisers to support YogaBear's efforts:
June 7 2009, National Cancer Survivor Day: catch YogaBear's free yoga classes in NYC at Rock & Run on the River (a celebration of cancer survivorship sponsored by Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center). Free classes also available in LA and San Francisco
June 27: Yogapalooza will offer free public yoga classes in Atlanta GA, Austin TX, Cleveland OH, San Francisco CA and Washington DC.

Bloggers, until the end of the day on June 6, 2009, you can blog for a cause and spread the word about the benefits of yoga in improving recovery for cancer survivors. If you blog about your experience with yoga, and link back to YogaBear following these instructions, could win $6K to support its efforts to provide yoga classes to cancer survivors!

This blog post is part of Zemanta's "Blogging For a Cause" campaign to raise awareness and funds for worthy causes that bloggers care about.

Breathe in. Hold your breath. Breathe out. I've had four CT scans since last summer, and now, when I hear those words, I think yoga practice--not scan anxiety! I decided to blog for a cause about Yoga Bear so that other cancer survivors can learn that there's more to the power of breathing than just getting the best possible CT scan picture. Namaste.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous4:59 AM

    After three major abdominal surgeries in SEVEN MONTHS I know I would be totally lost without my yoga classes.

    Even now that I'm back on chemo I can still manage to get to classes 2 weeks out of 3. Sometimes it's a struggle to get there but it's always worth it.

    I'll do a blog post about this tomorrow.


Thanks for reading. These posts have all been moved to my new site at and no further comments are being accepted here. Please feel free to come on over to the new site and stay on top of my Life Out Loud.

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.