Foundations of Movement

Length: 2 sessions       Program Cost: $50   ($25/session)

This program introduces principles of exercising with chronic pain.  This introductory program is designed to help you understand the principles of movement in managing your pain, and to gain awareness of the principles and importance of postural alignment. Small class sizes.

You should go if...

  • You need a starting point to decide what movement program is right for you
  • You want advice about the right amount of movement for you
 
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Increasing Function

Length: 6 sessions       Program Cost: $180 ($30/session) 

In this program, we will help you learn to relax through movement, decrease your fear of flare-ups and re-injury, and increase your confidence in moving, both in exercise and in daily activity.  Small class sizes.  

You should go if...

  • You feel you have to be extra cautious in any movement activity
  • You are afraid that moving will increase your pain.
  • You often feel worse after doing light exercise
  • You want to learn how to integrate movement without needing to do a daily exercise "routine"
 
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Moving Well

Length: 6 sessions       Program Cost: $180 ($30/session) 

This program program is for people living with persistent pain who are comfortable with exercise and are ready to work with more strength and posture-based sequences. This program is especially recommended for people who tend to “go for it” as they exercise and end up flaring up their pain as a result. Small class sizes.

You should go if...

  • You already do some exercise and you would like to work on posture and alignment
  • Your pain is now pretty consistent and you are ready to integrate strengthening
  • You want to learn specific exercise and posture modifications so you can be ready to join public classes
 
 
 
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Gentle Yoga for Chronic Pain

Length: 4 sessions       Program Cost: $90  ($22/session)                                                                                      

This is an ongoing pre-registered yoga class, designed for people who live with chronic pain and either don’t feel comfortable in public yoga classes, or would like some extra help with how to modify their poses so to better work with their body. Unlike public classes, you are encouraged to talk with the teacher during class, and ask for help whenever it is needed.

This program can also help you learn what yoga moves are safe for you when you transition to a public yoga class in the future.

This class focuses on using the breath to relax the body, retrain the nervous system, and decrease fear of movement. At the same time, you will practice stretching, strengthening, and balancing. Poses are accessible to all levels of experience with yoga from beginners to those who have practiced for many years and options will be provided to meet individual needs.

Small class sizes

You should go if...

  • You want to try yoga, but you are worried that a public class will be too much for you
  • You want to learn modifications for your yoga practice, so you can learn to practice at home
  • You feel ready to do some gentle moving and stretching and prefer a small group
 
 

Chair Yoga for Chronic Pain

Length: 4 sessions       Program Cost: $90 ($22/session)                                                             

This is an ongoing pre-registered yoga class, designed for people who live with chronic pain and who prefer not to or have difficulty getting up and down from the floor.

Unlike public classes, speaking to the teacher during the session is encouraged, so that we can help you find a way of doing each posture that works well for your body. Modifications are offered for all experience levels, from complete beginners to those with years of experience.

This program can also help you learn what moves are safe for you if you want to transition to a public yoga classes in the future.

Small class sizes

You should go if...

  • You can't easily get up and down from the floor
  • You are not comfortable in public classes,
  • You are ready to gently build some strength and flexibility in a small group
  • You want to integrate relaxation and breathing into your movement practice
 
 
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Pilates Basics for Chronic Pain

Length: 4 sessions       Program Cost: $90 ($22/session)                                                                                 

This is an ongoing pre-registered class that focuses on alignment, core strength, and posture.

This program is a natural follow-up to our Moving Better program, and will build on those skills but, it is open to any person who has completed our Foundations program. This class involves exercises that are done from lying on your back.

If you cannot or would prefer not to come to the floor, please check out our Chair Yoga class.

Unlike public classes, speaking to the teacher during the session is encouraged, so that we can help you find a way of doing each posture that works well for your body. Modifications are offered for all experience levels, from complete beginners to those with years of experience.

This program can also help you learn what moves are safe for you if you want to transition to public classes in the future.  Small class sizes.

You should go if...

  • You don't usually get pain flares with movement
  • You want to begin building strength and developing better movement patterns.
  • You have completed the Foundations of Movement or Moving Better classe
  • You want to learn alignment and posture principles
  • You would like to learn how to do different exercises with more precision
  • You would like to learn about your core muscles and how to activate them without aggravating your pain
 
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Restorative Yoga and Meditation

Length: 4 sessions       Program Cost: $90   ($22/session)                                                                                      

Living with chronic pain can be incredibly exhausting. Not only is pain a draining experience, but people with chronic pain often find themselves bogged down with practitioner appointments and various other things they are doing to try and find some relief. 

This program in Restorative Yoga & Meditation is an ongoing pre-registered class that is intended to support you by helping you find the time to rest and restore in the midst of the challenges of chronic pain.

Relaxation and meditation are well-established pain management tools. Restorative Yoga is a relaxation practice where students rest in fully supported in holding poses for longer periods of time. This practice supports the function of the parasympathetic nervous system (also known as the relaxation response).

Meditation is most simply the practice of bringing your attention back to a particular focus. Often our struggle with pain is made worse by the way we respond to it. Learning to meditate empowers you to shift your focus away from thoughts that don’t support your health and well-being. Regular meditation practice has also been found to change the way the brain processes pain.

The Relaxing to CHANGEpain program (especially the Meditation & Mindfulness module) is a recommended prerequisite for this program. The prerequisite program will give you an in-depth understanding of why Restorative Yoga & Meditation are so beneficial for people with chronic pain. 

Small class sizes

 
 

Pacing for Daily Living

Length: 3 sessions        Program Cost: $90 ($30 per session)                                                     

What will I learn in this program?

  • Pacing is considered to be a key pillar of effective pain management. This program will teach you how to work with this essential skill.
  • Chronic pain impacts every aspect of our lives, and it often makes it difficult to carry out everyday activities. This program will teach you the powerful tool of pacing and help you get your life back while managing your pain.
  • You will be taught how to plan and modify your activities so that you can more successfully engage in activities of daily living.
  • Through pacing techniques and goal setting, you will learn to minimize pain and maximize productivity.

What might make me a good candidate for this program? 

  • You over-do things and then pay for it later
  • You're stuck in a cycle of flare-ups
  • You have difficulty knowing how to modify activities to minimize your pain

Who teaches this program and how can I take it?

This program is taught by Sarah Borthwick. Sarah works as an Occupational Therapist and has been managing her own chronic back pain for several years. This program is available at CHANGEpain as a Group Medical Visit and online through our CHANGEpain Together Group Self-Management programs. 

 
 
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Private Movement Coaching with Krista Friesen

Cost: $125 per hour 

Krista Friesen has extensive post-graduate training, knowledge and skills in chronic pain management, and is a seasoned yoga and Pilates teacher.  

She has years of experience working with chronic pain patients (herself included!), and has been with CHANGEpain and its predessor clinics since 2011.  She has deep understanding and background in the treatments and recommendations made by the CHANGEpain clinicians.

Krista offers coaching in:

  • General Pain Management
  • Movement (including yoga and Pilates)
  • Sleep

You should go if...

  • You prefer privacy rather than a group session
  • You are looking for in-depth personalized advice