Breast cancer patients and survivors from around the South Bay had a chance to hone their dance moves Friday morning as Dancing With the Stars' celebrity Anna Trebunskaya taught free lessons at her studio in Hermosa Beach.
This year marks the second year Torrance Memorial and the You Can Dance Studio have teamed up to offer the opportunity to women who are undergoing or have completed breast cancer treatment.
In addition to learning new dance moves, the hour dance lesson, coined "Bust a Move," offered many participants a chance to come together as a group and share their experiences living with breast cancer.
"This is the first time I have ever done anything with other breast cancer survivors," said Nikki Hernandez of Redondo Beach. "It is fun to talk to people and realize, ok, I am not the only person who has been doing chemo for the past six months."
For instructor Anna Trebunskaya, who is currently competing alongside dance partner Drew Lachey on ABC's Dancing With the Stars, Friday's dance lesson was an easy way to give back to the community.
"Just seeing those women letting loose and letting go and having fun is so rewarding," said Trebunskaya. "I know a lot of them are going through some real tough times right now."
Trebunskaya, who lost one of her best friends to breast cancer, taught the art of swing dancing to the approximately 50 women who came to the studio Friday.
"I gave the girls a little taste of what Drew and I have to do on Monday night on Dancing With the Stars and they did good," Trebunskaya said.
Torrance Memorial Breast Center medical director and Palos Verdes resident Patricia Sacks said that simply seeing her patients make it through treatment with a positive attitude is her biggest reward as a doctor.
"These women are basically celebrating their suvivorship with one another," said Sacks as she looked over the dance crowd. "What I work for is to see the patients on the other side doing well."
Sacks also encouraged all women to get screened for breast cancer and to not be afraid of getting a mammogram.
"It is all about finding it early," said Sacks. "We have treatments and we even have cures," she said.