What is “Yoga for living with Cancer”?

Yoga Kula

Yoga for Living with Cancer LeedsIf it wasn’t for our students, and each other, we would not have come as far as we have. Our journey of teaching this specialist yoga class; Yoga for Living with Cancer began in London in February 2013. Our US based teacher and mentor Laura Kupperman has been an invaluable motivator and font of knowledge.

We taught our first class on 1st October 2013 at Yoga Kula. Our students are very committed and although we are sad if they can’t come anymore, it is also a wonderful moment when they say they are unable to continue attending because they are ‘returning to work’. Sometimes however, our students are unable to come anymore because their cancer has spread and they become very unwell. We deal with these situations as a group and we know that the missing student is still there in spirit if not in person. Our classes contain a lot of love and support.

Our aim is to create a sacred place for people living with cancer. A space where they can come no matter how they feel, be quiet and be concerned only with their own well-being and healing.

Every class looks very different. Some days one person will be on the floor in a restorative pose, one will sit on a chair doing side stretches and two others will sit on the floor doing the same side stretches. Any physical limitations are catered for.

We have people with all types and stages of cancer coming to class. People in the role of carer are more than welcome to join us as well. Every class has physical postures, breathing exercises, meditation, restorative poses and a guided relaxation – you leave class and feel better than when you came.

Robert Ogden MacMillan Cancer Centre, St James Hospital

For the past year we have been working with the Robert Ogden MacMillan Centre in Leeds. It all started with a presentation and taster yoga session at the support group and now we are about to start our second six-week course at the Centre. The course is a great example of how simple but powerful yoga is.
We had eight open-minded, curious and very committed people, a meeting room, eight chairs and eight mats.
The feedback counts:
I sleep so much better
I can lift my arm over my head
I feel more relaxed and alive
I could do much more than I thought I could

Yoga for Living with Cancer is now taught by the incredible Lara Heppell. Yoga for Living with Cancer runs every Tuesday at 1:15pm-2:30pm at Yoga Kula in Chapel Allerton.