Female Factor focuses on wellness issues

Published 3:00 am Thursday, October 9, 2014

messenger photo / april garon Karen Alewine, Pilates instructor at Xtreme Athletics, demonstrates Pilates at the Female Factor luncheon Wednesday.

messenger photo / April Garon
Karen Alewine, Pilates instructor at Xtreme Athletics, demonstrates Pilates at the Female Factor luncheon Wednesday.

The October Female Factor luncheon focused on many facets of wellness: breast cancer awareness, the advantages of Pilates exercise and benefits of spa services.

October is breast cancer awareness month and Jessica Outlaw, who works in the mammography department at Troy Regional Medical Center, began the event with statistics on the effects of breast cancer.

“Older ladies, don’t think you should stop mammograms with older age,” Outlaw said. “Risk increases as you age. The risk to develop breast cancer at age 20 is 1/1732; at age 70, it is 1/26. Take time to take care of yourself.”

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Cancer survivors in the audience stood up and received applause after Outlaw spoke.

The two guest speakers for the event were Karen Alewine, instructor at Xtreme Athletics, and Tori Browder Peacock of Victorian Spa and Wellness Center.

Alewine gave an overview of Pilates, starting with the 6 focuses of the fitness system: concentration, centering, precision, control, breathing and fluid movement.

“Benefits of Pilates include additional muscle strength, increased flexibility, improved body posture and better alignment,” Alewine said. “It also can relieve back pain.”

Alewine encouraged participants of all ages and physical abilities to try Pilates.

“Please don’t think it will be too hard for you,” Alewine said. “There are different levels and a variety of ages and abilities. We are moms, grandmas and everyone in between.”

Xtreme Athletics is located on 13652 Hwy 231. Alewine offers Pilates classes Monday through Friday at 8:15 a.m. and on Thursday nights at 5:30 p.m. Classes last one hour and the first class is free.

Tori Browder Peacock of Victorian Spa gave tips for anti-aging and went over the benefits of massage therapy.

“Facials are relaxing with benefits,” Peacock said. “They increase circulation of blood under the skin, cellular turnover, reduce waste by manipulating the lymphatic system under the skin to let the skin shine.”

Peacock said that an estimated 75 percent of women have never had a professional massage.

“Massage stimulates lymphatic flow, enhances immunity, loosens muscles, helps tired muscles and sleep quality and even helps athletes prepare for intense workouts,” Peacock said.

Victorian Spa and Wellness Center is located at 107 Pecan Street.

Organizer Karen Herring said she was excited to be able to showcase services available in Troy.

“Part of the Female Factor ambition is to show exactly what Troy has to offer,” Herring said.

Female Factor is a program of Troy Regional Medical Center and the monthly luncheons are offered in partnership with several area businesses and sponsors.