Sigurdsson supports participants at Macmillan After Cancer Exercise session
15 April 2014|Tottenham Hotspur
As the Club celebrates a season of support for NHS campaign ‘Get to know cancer’, Gylfi Sigurdsson spent time in the local community to help launch the new Macmillan After Cancer Exercise (ACE) programme, delivered by Tottenham Hotspur Foundation with funding from Macmillan Cancer Support and Big Lottery.
The Club has been helping to raise awareness of the signs and symptoms of cancer, and promoting early diagnosis amongst its fans throughout the season, and will wear special edition match shirts emblazoned with the ‘Get to know cancer’ logo during Saturday’s Premier League match with Fulham.
Evidence suggests that physical activity after treatment for cancer can reduce the impact of a number of side effects and in some cases help prevent the cancer reoccurring. The aim of the Macmillan ACE programme is to encourage cancer patients to be active and take gentle exercise in order to aid their recovery.
Currently, Haringey and Enfield is home to some 7,433 cancer patients, with this figure continuing to rise. As part of the Foundation’s commitment to improving life expectancy within the local community, Macmillan ACE will give people affected by cancer the skills and motivation to be active.
The sessions, which are free of charge, will take place in community sports centres making them easy to access and can be delivered on either a group or one-to-one basis. Differing considerably from typical exercise classes offered by local gyms, Macmillan ACE focuses on gentle exercises that promote a steady progression through a combination of cycling, walking, circuits, aerobics, zumba and tai-chi to strengthen the body. Progress is monitored over a 12 week period, where participants are encouraged to work with cancer rehabilitation exercise specialists to reach personal goals as part of their cancer rehabilitation programme.
The project will run over five years, supported by funding from Macmillan Cancer Support and Big Lottery, and in partnership with the local Public Health bodies, Fusion Lifestyle and Middlesex University.
Tottenham Hotspur Foundation will work with partners to implement an effective referral system for health professionals to ensure cancer patients in the local areas have access to safe and enjoyable exercise-based rehabilitation programmes.
Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Gylfi, who spoke with patients at the launch, said: “Having spoken to participants on the Macmillan ACE programme, it’s remarkable to hear first-hand the benefits gentle exercise can bring. The Club is committed to fighting cancer through the ‘Get to know cancer’ campaign, and providing support for those in our community that have been affected.”
Grant Cornwell, Chief Executive Officer of Tottenham Hotspur Foundation, said: “Cancer affects one in three people which is why it is so important for Tottenham Hotspur to use its place at the heart of the community to provide support to those affected by cancer, and their families. An effective way to do this is by combining activities to raise awareness of cancer through our ‘Get to know cancer’ campaign, with projects like Macmillan ACE supporting those who are in the recovery stage.”
Nikki Cannon, Senior Macmillan Development Manager, said: “We are delighted to be partnering with the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation on this After Cancer Exercise programme that will be a huge benefit to cancer patients in the Haringey and Enfield area. Physical activity is vital to the recovery process of cancer, in some cases reducing a patient’s chances of having to go through the gruelling ordeal of treatment all over again and it is great to see these accessible and free sessions being run in the local community.”
Tottenham Hotspur’s fixture against Fulham on Saturday 19 April is dedicated to supporting ‘Get to know cancer’.