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Published on November 01, 2018

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Feel your best during and after cancer treatment with LIVESTRONG at the YMCA

Cancer is a life-changing disease that often takes a tremendous physical and emotional toll on those affected by it. That is why Gundersen has partnered with the La Crosse Area Family YMCA and refers patients to their LIVESTRONG at the YMCA program, a researched-based physical activity and well-being program designed to help adult cancer survivors reclaim their total health. LIVESTRONG at the YMCA is the result of a combined partnership between the LIVESTRONG Foundation and Y-USA.

Participants work with Y staff trained in supportive cancer care to safely achieve their goals, such as building muscle mass and strength; increasing flexibility and endurance; and improving confidence and self-esteem. By focusing on the whole person and not the disease, LIVESTRONG at the YMCA moves survivors beyond cancer in spirit, mind and body.

This program includes:

  • Free 12-week YMCA family membership
  • Two 90-minute classes per week
  • A combination of individual instruction and group activities
  • Cardiovascular exercise, strength training, stretching and balance work
  • Full access to both of the La Crosse Area Family YMCA branches

Program goals:

  • Improve energy levels and self-esteem
  • Build muscular strength and endurance
  • Improve flexibility
  • Improve circulation and functional ability to complete everyday tasks
  • Reduce the severity of treatment side effects
  • Restore balance
  • Improve body image
  • Reduce stress levels
  • Build supportive relationships in a comfortable and safe environment

Program instructors: LIVESTRONG at the YMCA teachers are certified fitness instructors who give personal instruction in a group setting. Each instructor has undergone specialized training in cancer, post-cancer exercise and supportive cancer care.

Criteria for participation: Any adult going through cancer treatment or who has gone through treatment (i.e. surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, etc.) and wants to regain their health and well-being may be eligible to participate. Specific criteria include:

  • Strong personal desire to participate
  • Commitment to attending all classes
  • Communication with your physician (you must inform your provider that you plan to join the program)
  • Medical clearance from your provider (medical clearance form on back of brochure)
  • Completed screening forms and health questionnaire
  • Permission for the LIVESTRONG at the YMCA project manager to contact your health care provider if necessary

For more information about LIVESTRONG at the YMCA, contact Health Interventions Director, Dana Boler at or (608) 519-5473 or download the program brochure.

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