Group Yoga at the OICC:
Friday at 12:30 – 1:30 p.m.
Cost $10

Private sessions available on Fridays by appointment

Call (613-792-122) or email (

A cancer diagnosis is shattering. Life as it was, in its innocence, slips away and we are faced with walking the path of cancer, whatever it brings. What now?

In “When Things Fall Apart”, Pema Chodron remarks that “if we are willing to give up hope that insecurity and pain can be exterminated, then we can have the courage to relax with the groundlessness of our situation. This is the first step of the path.”

But how do we stay present to every moment when we are in pain, when we are scared? How do we make decisions from a wise place? How do we listen to this body and its needs while undergoing treatment? How do we breathe in all of this?

Sometimes the cancer journey actually brings us back to our bodies and to our life – a re-connection, a coming home. It can help us to learn for the first time “maitri”, loving kindness toward oneself. A yoga practice that allows for reflection, that follows what the body needs at every stage, can give us a sense of peace, even momentarily. Gentle movement can help lymph circulation, postures can flush and re-awaken the body, breath can calm and help us to re-centre. Sometimes the practice is only breath. Sometimes more movement is desired. The body can guide us, if we can listen mindfully.

Anne is a Yoga Teacher and Yoga Therapist at the Ottawa Integrative Cancer Centre

Yoga Classes at the Ottawa Integrative Cancer Centre. Enjoy quiet reflection and ease of movement in a unique unhurried yoga class. Open to anyone – people at any stage of the cancer journey; from diagnosis to treatment to those post treatment, caregivers, and staff at the OICC. No experience in yoga necessary.

Yoga Therapy at the Ottawa Integrative Cancer Centre

Yoga therapy is a form of body-centered counseling that draws on the wisdom of yoga and breath practice to turn inward; listening deeply, acknowledging held experience and supporting the body through difficult experiences. No physical flexibility, or experience with yoga is required. Yoga Therapy begins with talking, then noticing and tracking body sensations for guidance. Sometimes the needs are more physical, such as the desire to gently de-toxify from chemo and bolster the immune system through breath practice and gentle movement. Sometimes, the inquiry discovers held emotions; such as diagnosis shock or a chronic anxiety, wanting to be recognized and moved. When very depleted, the body often doesn’t want to move as much as to rest and be held in a bolstered restorative pose. Yoga therapy is more than the practice of yoga. It is profound individualized self- care during challenging times that gives the body a voice. Our practice is to listen.