A unique programme to help cancer patients become more active is being introduced in the Scottish Borders. Macmillan Cancer Support and Live Borders have worked together to develop Move More Borders - a programme of physical activity designed specifically for people affected by cancer.
Traditionally cancer patients have been told to rest but research by Macmillan Cancer Support has shown that being active during and after treatment can improve physical and emotional health and help to minimise the side effects of treatment.
Macmillan Cancer Support has invested £132,000 to develop Move More Borders in partnership with Live Borders. It will include walking groups, a gentle movement class, circuits-based activity classes and gardening.
Nisreen Badiozzaman, Macmillan Development Manager, said: "We are excited to be working with Live Borders to introduce the Move More initiative to the region.
"Doctors used to advise people to rest as much as possible during and after cancer treatment, however we now know that being active during and after treatment can maintain physical function, minimise the side effects of treatment and could help prevent recurrence.
"We know many people may feel nervous about building up their activity levels, particularly if it's for the first time after treatment or if they haven't been very active for a while, which is why Macmillan is working with Live Borders to provide this programme specifically for people diagnosed with cancer."
Ewan Jackson, Chief Executive of Live Borders added; "Our aim is to enable people of all ages and abilities to become more active and our new partnership with Macmillan is a wonderful addition to the activity opportunities available in the region. We hope this initiative will open the door to cancer patients both enjoying exercise and achieving the best possible outcome from their treatment."
Move More Borders is supported by NHS Borders and Paths for All. A Macmillan Move More Development Officer is based at Live Borders head office in Galashiels and volunteers will lead and support the activities programme. The sessions will run on a weekly basis initially in Galashiels and Hawick before being expanded to other areas of the region.
The Move More programme will be free of charge and is available to people affected by cancer now.