Spurs and Macmillan Cancer Support are celebrating three years of helping North Londoners fight cancer through physical activity, with over 630 participants benefitting from the Move4You (formally ACE) programme.
The initiative sees specialist cancer rehabilitation instructors from the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation deliver free weekly sessions at selected Fusion Leisure Centres for adults either living with or recovering from cancer in Haringey, Enfield, Barnet and Islington.
Goalkeeper Pau Lopez helped celebrate the milestone at White Hart Lane, taking part in exercise sessions, cutting an anniversary cake and meeting people who have benefitted from Move4You.
The 22-year-old participated in seated aerobics, stretching and relaxation exercises alongside current and former participants on the programme.
Pau said: “I am extremely proud of the work the Club and Macmillan are doing to help improve the lives of so many people who have been affected by cancer.
“It is inspiring to meet people who have taken part in the programme, hear their individual stories and find out about how they have benefitted from the great work that takes place.”
Today there are more than 200,000 people living with cancer in London. Evidence shows that being active can help prevent and manage some of the effects of cancer treatment; such as fatigue, depression and risks to heart health, and may even reduce the risk of some cancers progressing or returning.
Differing considerably from typical exercise sessions offered by local gyms, Move4You gives people affected by cancer the support and motivation to be active, focusing on gentle exercises that promote a steady progression. Through a combination of cycling, walking and circuits, progress is monitored over a 12-week period where participants are encouraged to reach personal goals.
Tottenham resident Joseph is just one of the 630 people to benefit from the programme. Diagnosed with prostate cancer, Joseph underwent extensive chemotherapy and struggled with basic movements before being referred onto a Move4You course in 2016 by his GP.
Below: Joseph meets Pau
Now in remission, Joseph said: “Throughout my treatment for cancer I found it very difficult to do simple things like walk up the stairs or get in the bath and I lost my sense of independence.
“Being part of Move4You has helped enormously and I thoroughly enjoyed the sessions with my Tottenham Hotspur Foundation instructor Emiliano. I now have the confidence to exercise independently while my range of movement has improved dramatically.
“I wish to thank everyone from the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation and Macmillan for all their support. It has changed my life.”
Grant Cornwell MBE, Chief Executive, Tottenham Hotspur Foundation, said: “The Tottenham Hotspur Foundation is committed to supporting people living with and beyond cancer in the local community.
“I’m delighted that, with the help of Macmillan, we are able to offer this bespoke exercise scheme which has had a positive impact on so many lives.”
Ed Tallis, Macmillan Head of Services in London said: “We know that taking part in physical activity during and after cancer treatment can play a huge part in enabling people living with cancer to take back control. So we are delighted with the success of the Move4You programme, and seeing the real difference it makes in the lives of those taking part.”
For more information about the Move4You programme email email@example.com