In this post we hear first hand about Cancer Rehabilitation Level 4 Specialist Training from Clare Wheatly who gained her qualificaion this year.
- What made you decide to further your professional skills and take the course?
After my own brush with breast cancer, whilst trying to get fit again, I had a eureka moment. Exercise and cancer go hand in hand. I never knew how much until after my treatment. The benefits of physical activity were a revelation to me, so I wanted to pass on what I’d learnt to other cancer patients. I bit the bullet and ventured into the world of fitness, never believing I could actually qualify as an instructor. (I have a number of co-morbidities, some of which are related to my cancer treatment). When I decided to change career, it was my aim to become a Level 4 Cancer Rehab Exercise Instructor, so that I could work specifically with cancer clients – to let them enjoy their exercise, have a laugh, feel comfortable with someone who has been there and got the T-shirt and forget that they have cancer, even if it’s for 30mins. I never had that in my treatment pathway and really want to ensure that others do.
- What has your previous experience of Cancer and physical activity been?
Up until my cancer diagnosis, the only exercise I did was working in my garden and on the allotment. I had no idea that being physically active pre-cancer would have such a huge impact on my recovery times after surgery and other treatment. I wish I had known this beforehand.
- How would you describe the course content?
On the practical side, the course could be a challenge for those that aren’t used to teaching classes in a gym. Not something that I do as I work one-to-one on resistance machines in my part time gym job. Saying that, the tutors are excellent. Without compromising the quality and high regard this course holds, they have bent over backwards to enable me to take part in the course. I have loved every minute of it (except the exams 😀 ). It was well worth travelling to Scotland for four days. I loved the theory part of the course as I learnt so much more about other cancers and what to look out for. The content was easy to follow, well taught and interactive.
- Was the course predominantly practical or rote learning?
The Can Rehab course I took had equal parts of practical and theory. A good balance of both. I loved every minute of it. I hope that I also was able to impart my personal experience to enable others on the course to understand more about the impact of cancer – lymphoedema for example. Trainers don’t actually know how heavy the arm (in my case) can weigh, but they felt it practically and ‘got it’.
- How do you plan to use what you have learnt/your new qualification?
Oh my! I so want to show other cancer patients/clients that a cancer diagnosis does not mean you give up. I have osteoporosis and lymphoedema after my breast cancer treatment, and yet I have found a part time gym job and now have a very fulfilling career that I never expected to have. If I can help others to find a way of keeping fit and active despite their cancer surgeries/treatments etc then I will be a happy woman.
- Would you recommend the course to others?
Definitely yes. It costs a lot but worth every penny if you find the right course for you. I have no regrets about taking this course.
- Any last words?
Yes. Just because you have or have had cancer and you are still living with ongoing health issues, does not mean that you have to sit back and give up. These days there is a greater chance for survival. Adding some form of physical activity in your life can make a big difference to your mental health as well as your physical health. I’m not saying it is easy, because from personal experience it’s not. But we have fought cancer. If we can do that then we can do anything, and blow what anyone else thinks or expects.
Thank you Clare! The next available training course dates are:
Can Rehab Level 4 course dates
June 18-19 – Springfield Leisure Centre, Corsham
June 22-25 – Inverness
September 19-20 and October 17-18 Folkestone
For more information click here
The Wright Foundation course dates
June 29 – 3 July Exeter
July 13-17 Nottingham and Selby
August 10- 14 London
For more information click here