Yoga after a mastectomy
Updated: May 18, 2022
In February 2006 M.M. began private sessions with me to assist with further recovery from a mastectomy (removal of the breast) she’d had 6 months earlier.
Her sister accompanied her and participated in all the sessions.
Our first session started on the 17th of February and concluded 4 months later in June when M.M. was ready to start group classes. The photos where taken in May when much mobility was restored to the parts which had been affected by surgery.
Our initial focus was to bring mental, physical and emotional ease with a simple practice that emphasized relaxation, visualisation and breathing. The asana and breathing practice was aimed at gently stretching the armpit chest to restore range of movement and increase circulation as well as to regain strength. Stretches to release tension in other parts of the body were also included.
All asanas used props to support the body and were performed slowly with conscious breathing. Each week we worked on progressing to more and deeper poses as well as reducing support. Our aim was for M.M. to acquire enough strength, movement in the upper trunk and arms, and gain confidence to attend group classes. This would allow her to continue to benefit from her practice in a more independent