The basic view of DANCING WITH HEALTH is that sport for cancer patients has a double role. The first is connected with physical education, movement and health information, concepts contained in the primary directions of the EU. The other role is connected with learning and education. Through training, patients can be supported by skilled experts who can properly accompany them in their difficult path of treatments and recovery.
Study findings indicate that cancer patients experience elevated levels of psychological distress and depression in response to diagnosis and treatment. Therefore, current cancer care increasingly incorporates psychosocial interventions to help patients come to terms with changes in their body, address distorted body images, deal with unresolved grief, restore hope, increase emotional expression, reduce isolation and improve self-esteem. Research results have indicated that such comprehensive care has improved cancer patients’ quality of life.
Creative arts therapies such as dance/movement have been used to aid in the care of cancer patients and in their recovery. The physical benefits of dance therapy as exercise are well documented. Studies have shown that physical activity is known to increase special neurotransmitter substances in the brain (endorphins), which create a state of wellbeing. And total body movement such as dance enhances the functions of other body systems, such as circulatory, respiratory, skeletal, and muscular systems. Today dance/movement therapy is a well recognized form of complementary therapy used in hospitals as well as at the comprehensive clinical cancer centres.
Considering this, the project wants:
a) to promote physical activity in the form of dance to breast cancer survivors and women who are concluded their treatment aged 30-65 by offering an innovative dance protocol to involve them in a moderate / vigorous physical activity and as a consequence
b) to make women accept and reconnect with their bodies, build new self-confidence, enhance self-expression, address feelings of isolation, depression, anger and fear and to strengthen personal resources and above all, to do a physical activity necessary for their well being.
c) to train dance teachers and experts in physical education with specific skills in the participating countries in order to standardize the protocol and make it transferable and replicable also in other contexts and countries. The training will be organized using the train the trainers methodology in order to trigger a cascade effect and involve more operators in the sector.
d) to organize multipliers events open to the public to inform them about the project and of other topics as the Importance of physical activity for the maintenance of health status; Physical activity in the prevention and treatment of diseases; Dance and its psychological and physiological effects; Breast Cancer and Exercise.