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Jewish Community Center

Yoga for Cancer & Oncology Massage

Therapies to Complement the Treatment of Cancer

The J is proud to offer two services dedicated to helping people cope with the symptoms and side effects of a cancer experience: Yoga for Cancer and Oncology Massage. These services are available for anyone living with cancer and who have spoken with their medical treatment team prior to participating.

 “Cancer steals your breath. Yoga gives it back.™” – Tari Prinster

Yoga for Cancer is a yoga methodology that teaches interventions for cancer patients and survivors. Interventions are an effective and safe complementary modality that can help cancer patients and survivors manage symptoms and side effects, as well as help improve health outcomes. Classes are gentle and restorative and focus on the foundation of movement and breath and the special needs of cancer patients or survivors.

Yoga for Cancer at the J

Location: Virtual

Mondays: 12:15-1:30pm

Class Details:

  • Six-week sessions
  • Classes are 75 minutes
  • Session Rate: $50/members & $75/non-members*
  • New six-week sessions begin immediately upon completion of previous session
  • Participants may join mid-session
  • Minimum attendance required

To learn more about the subsidy that Sharsheret National offers individuals that fall within their mission, contact Debbi Braunstein, 314-442-3266. Subsidy may cover the cost for up to one year.


Emily Elizabeth Steinberg
E-RYT (Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher)
y4c (yoga4cancer) Trained Teacher

Emily Steinberg has studied, trained and taught yoga for 16 years, and she began at the J in 2007. She earned her yoga4cancer (y4c) Trained Teacher Certification in 2019.

The study of Yoga4Cancer provides her the opportunity to use her experience as a cancer “pre-vivor” to build community and connection.  As a pre-vivor (carrier of a BRCA gene mutation), Emily made choices to surgically lower her risk for developing breast and ovarian cancer. Her compassion and teaching are derived from this and the support she provided her mother during her cancer journey.

Love the soulful and nourishing yoga for cancer class that has become a mainstay of my week. Emily brings her wealth of yoga knowledge and weaves together a unique experience that is hard to describe. Definitely worth trying it for yourself.

The importance of having a y4c trained instructor:

  • Yoga for Cancer training equips teachers with the knowledge, skills, and resources required to safely and effectively work with cancer patients and survivors.
  • A trained Yoga for Cancer instructor can not only help cancer patients and survivors manage symptoms and side effects, but can also help them lead longer, healthier lives.
  • Classes adapt poses and practices to address common side effects and meets the needs of each individual.
  • Yoga for Cancer instructors are trained to be aware of, and understand, the cautions/risks in generic yoga styles.
  • Encourage students to take an active role in their recovery and long-term health.

A Yoga for Cancer class may help patients and survivors with the following:

  • Improve balance and mobility
  • Improve sleep
  • Reduce anxiety and stress
  • Enhance immune system
  • Improve sense of well-being

“My therapist understands the difficult road of cancer and addresses the physical pain associated with the mental anguish.” – S4OM

Oncology massage is currently suspended while the J is closed. This service will be offered again as soon as it is safe to do so.

Oncology massage is a specialized, non-invasive therapy that helps one manage the symptoms of cancer and side effects of treatment. It uses a light touch along with slow, steady movements, and is intended to help the body relax. A safe massage plan generally revolves around the side effects (both short – and long-term) of chemotherapy, radiation and surgery.

Oncology Massage at the J

60-minute oncology massages provided by licensed massage therapist properly trained in oncology.


$70 per 60 minutes

Debra (Deb) Earp has studied, trained and practiced massage since 2003. After several years of practicing traditional massage, Deb geared her practice towards medical message therapy.  Pursuing oncology massage was a natural alignment with this practice and her desire to help people feel better and live without pain.

Kyler Williams has studied, trained and practiced massage since 2013. Kyler provides rehabilitative medical, therapeutic and relaxation massage therapy after years of experience collaborating with physicians and physical therapists. He pursued oncology massage after recognizing this practice was an integral approach to patient care and how it can help manage side effects and improve health outcomes.

The J’s Licensed Massage Therapists (LMT):

  • Debra Earps – LMT (Licensed Massage Therapist), CMMP (Certified Medical Massage Practitioner), Certificate of Completion in Oncology Massage (S4OM).
  • Kyler Williams – LMT (Licensed Massage Therapist), Certificate of Completion in Oncology Massage (S4OM).

The importance of having a Licensed Massage Therapist properly trained in oncology:

  • Knows what information to gather from the client and how to make the corresponding adjustments based on your personal treatment plan and/or history.
  • They meet people where they are in their cancer experience and apply a highly individualized massage treatment to comfort, nurture and support them in their process.
  • Trained to be aware of, and understand, the cautions/risks for cancer patients and survivors.
  • Understands the impact cancer treatment poses to the immune system and knows what precautions are necessary to keep you safe.

An oncology massage may help patients and survivors with the following:

  • Lessen cancer fatigue and improve sleep
  • Reduce anxiety and stress
  • Reduce chemotherapy-related nausea
  • Pain reduction
  • Ease constipation
  • Improved chemotherapy-related neuropathic pain
  • Provide a sense of well being

Society for Oncology Massage (S4OM)

  • Training Curriculum is recognized by S4OM (Society for Oncology Massage) and approved by the National Certification Board of Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork.


For more information about Yoga for Cancer and Oncology Massage, please contact:
please contact Debbi Braunstein, 314-442-3266.

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