Firstly, what is Cancer?

Cancer is developed when abnormal cells (the body’s basic building blocks) grow in an uncontrolled way. These cells can develop within all parts of the body and can eventually invade surrounding tissue (by spreading through our blood and lymphatic system).

Why is exercise important for people with Cancer?

​Exercise has been proven to have huge benefits before, during and after cancer treatment. Some of these benefits include:

  • Helps with side effects of treatment (including cancer-related fatigue)
  • Assists in maintaining muscle mass and strength
  • Improved physical function and energy
  • Reduced anxiety and depression
  • Improved completion rate of treatment

What to consider:

There are a few things to be considered before beginning your exercise journey. Some of these are listed below:

  • Patients undergoing cancer treatment (particularly chemotherapy), may experience fluctuating levels of tiredness and fatigue so exercise intensity/levels should be adjusted accordingly​
  • Although encouraged, if you were exercising pre-treatment you may still need to reduce intensity during and after treatment
  • ​Impact exercises should be avoided by those with bone metastases
  • Understand the importance of hydration and food (especially protein) for refueling the system

All types of exercise are recommended for people with cancer (including aerobic, resistance and flexibility exercises). See an exercise specialist for help in getting a tailored exercise program that is right for you.