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Toronto doctor looking to help women exercise


A Toronto-based doctor wants to help women link up for workouts and exercise in a new program funded by a Canadian Cancer Society grant.

Catherine Sabiston, also an associate professor at the University of Toronto, is developing what she describes as a matchmaking program for women to help them find others to exercise with and keep each other motivated.

“I’ve worked with more than 1,000 women with cancer and one of the most consistent worries or challenges I hear is that they don’t have anyone to work out with or anyone to motivate them,” Sabiston told the Toronto Star.

The program will allow women to log in and let others looking for workout and exercise partners known what they’re interested in doing, their goals, how they like to stay fit and where they’re at. The matchmaker, much like an online dating service, will link up potential workout partners and help break down the barriers of finding someone whose goals, schedule and personality align.

In addition to the service, Sabiston wants to offer counselling and advice to women over the phone to keep them motivated and offer suggestions of how to overcome other barriers to exercise that may arise.

The grant to help the program get off the ground is a Innovation Grant, which are meant to “support unique, creative research ideas that will impact cancer” and can range from $100,000 to $200,000. Sabiston’s grant is worth $191,000.

It is expected the service will be in a test run over the summer.

-Scott Leitch