SALT LAKE, Utah (ABC4 Utah) –A Chinese practice of meditation and movement has shown great benefits for people.
Classes are given twice a week at Huntsman Cancer Institute for cancer patients and their caregivers to help boost their energy levels and their spirits.
The practice of Tai Chi and Qi Gong have great benefits much more than even the instructor knew until she herself was diagnosed with cancer.
Toni Lock, Instructor, “I believe when people come, they can be themselves and not be labeled a patient mother or caregiver.”
51-year-old Toni Lock has practiced Tai Chi and Qi Gong for 20 years. She’s been an instructor at Huntsman Cancer Institute for the past 3 years.
Cassidy Doucette, a nurse educator just completed a study on the benefits of Qi Gong.
“Practicing Qi Gong twice a week for 5 weeks dramatically improved fatigue and quality of life in cancer patients and caregivers.”
But instructor Toni, already knew that. Cassidy’s study, which Toni was a part, had just begun when the beloved instructor got the shock of her life.
Toni was diagnosed with breast cancer in January. She just finished chemo and will start radiation soon.
“I take it one step at a time. That’s what Tai Chi and Qi Gong is all about, it’s about being present.”
Fatigue and depression are hallmark side effects of a diagnosis in cancer patients and their caregivers.
Toni knows it’s the ancient Chinese practice that’s getting her through day by day.
“It’s huge. It’s what’s gotten me through this if i didn’t have this foundation you can go to the other side because you have a choice end your life or you can learn to be stronger and better and that’s what I want to teach my students.”