The SOMA Movement Studio at Farmington Valley Physical Therapy is now an official instructor training center for the Pink Ribbon Program, a system of Pilates based exercises specifically designed for post-operative breast cancer recovery. The exercises help lengthen and strengthen the shoulder, chest, back and abdominal muscles, allowing women to regain full range of motion to those areas affected by breast cancer surgery.
The Pink Ribbon Program, founded by Doreen Puglisi, MS, was created to help meet the goals of the breast cancer survivor. These major areas of concern typically include body image, frozen shoulder, and/or range of motion, depression and anxiety.
This post-rehabilitation protocol is appropriate for any breast cancer survivor, whether their surgery was eight weeks ago or ten years ago. Over 1000 breast cancer survivors have used this exercise protocol to aid in surgery recovery.
Summary of the Six Week Exercise Program
- Begins six weeks post-operatively, encompassing post op weeks 6-12
- There are three phases of the Pink Ribbon Program, each phase lasts two weeks
- Progression from one phase to the next is individually based
- Classes/sessions are attended two to three times a week for most reliable results
- The client generally can resume mainstream activities after completion of the six week Pink Ribbon Program
Benefits of the Pink Ribbon Program
- Prevent and reduce cancer related fatigue
- Increase muscle mass, strength and endurance
- Increase in daily functional activities
- Increase in physical activities
- Assist in lymphedema management
- Increase shoulder range of motion following breast cancer surgery, especially with lymph node dissection
The Pink Ribbon Program training is open to physical therapists, occupational therapists, Pilates instructors, lymphedema treatment specialists, and nurses. After completion of the Pink Ribbon Training Program, the practicioner can refer to themselves as a Post Operative Breast Cancer Exercise Specialist (BCES).
Post Operative Breast Cancer Exercise Specialist
The Breast Cancer Exercise Specialist (BCES) is a professional qualified to assess, design, and implement individual fitness programs for those diagnosed with cancer. The BCES has an advanced understanding of the cancer treatment progressions from diagnosis to treatment, recovery, prevention of lymphedema, and contraindications.
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