As a Pilates Instructor, my job is to help my clients gain strength, heal injuries and live life pain free, but what does that look like for Breast Cancer patients? This was the question I asked myself when I realized that I was working with Breast Cancer patients and had no formal training on how to effectively work with clients who currently have Breast Cancer, clients who are post surgery, and clients who are years into their recovery. This information was not provided in my teacher training, so I began to search the internet for concrete information and protocols for working with Breast Cancer patients.
I devoured every scholarly, peer-reviewed article I could find and although each article shared the common thread of how important and effective Pilates is for Breast Cancer patients, I still lacked the concrete protocols I was looking for to effectively help my clients, that is, until I found Jill Hinson and the Core Compassion Project. Jill created a highly specialized, medically approved Pilates protocol for Breast Cancer patients and also created the Core Compassion Project, a non-profit organization that provides scholarships for 10 weeks of Rehabilitative Pilates to Breast Cancer patients. I learned as much as I could and began exploring advanced certifications in this specialty, but with COVID restrictions, none were offered.
Fast forward to this past June, when I learned that Jill would be presenting at MomentumFest. I knew I had to go. I called Brooke, she told me she was already signed up for the conference and without hesitation, I said, ‘I’m coming with you.’ While in Denver, I attended Jill’s workshop and was beyond impressed. This was the information I was so desperately seeking. Brooke and I had the pleasure of meeting with Jill after the workshop and she told me that she was running her certification in September. I ran back to my room, grabbed my computer and registered to take her teacher training.
I immediately called my mom and excitedly told her about Jill and her teacher training program and how thrilled I was to finally gain the knowledge I was looking for to best help my clients. Oddly, my mom, who is usually very enthusiastic and supportive, was very quiet and reserved. I knew there was something wrong, but when asked, my mom kept reassuring me that everything was fine. That Sunday evening, I called my mom on my way home from the airport and she told me to call her when I wasn’t driving.
My heart sank, I knew something was wrong. When I got home, I called her and she told me she had Breast Cancer.
The weekend I met Jill Hinson and signed up to become certified in her method, my mom was diagnosed with a Stage 2 malignant breast tumor. She’s recently had a lumpectomy and will be starting a long road of radiation treatment. She’s feeling well and is in good spirits, but this news hit our entire family hard. My family is not alone in this battle. We all know someone who has been impacted by Breast Cancer. It should come as no surprise that 1 in 8 women are diagnosed with Breast Cancer. My clients and my mom are 6 of the 8. I felt very passionate about being certified in Jill’s method, but now this is personal and a cause very near and dear to my heart.
At Reforming Foundations, we are honored to GO PINK for the month of October for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. We will be hosting Jill Hinson in-studio, in October for a professional training and a public “Mat-Raiser” fundraiser for the Core Compassion Project. RF will be the first Pilates studio in Michigan to become a Core Compassion Project Affiliate so that we can provide 10 weeks of Rehabilitative Pilates to Breast Cancer patients at no cost to them.
Reforming Foundations is more than a Pilates studio, we are a supportive and caring community that works hard to meet the needs of every person that walks through our doors. We are proud to offer this highly specialized training to professionals and even more proud to be doing this important, meaningful work with Breast Cancer patients. We hope you will join us in Going Pink this October as we welcome Jill into the RF community and at our “Mat-Raiser”. My clients, my mom, and I thank you!
In Good Health,
Stacey Block, NCPT