Woman exercising with weights

Woman exercising with weightsWhat is cancer?
Cancer is a disease of the cells which causes uncontrollable abnormal cell growth in any part of the body and therefore can result in malignant growth or tumour.

How can exercise help?
Including exercise into oncology treatment plans has recently been confirmed as best-practice care. Using exercise as an adjunct therapy has been shown to reduce side effects of certain medications, chemotherapy, radiation and hormone therapy and in some cases positively affect tumor size. Overall, exercise provides an empowering effect for patient’s on their health throughout the treatment process.

How much and what type should I do?
Currently, the recommended exercise guidelines for oncology patients include completing at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic exercise (e.g. walking, jogging, cycling, swimming) each week. In combination with two to three resistance exercise (i.e. lifting weights) sessions each week involving moderate to vigorous-intensity exercises targeting the major muscle groups.

This may seem like a lot of exercise, however, what is most important in the prescription of exercise for oncology patients is that a patient-centred approach is followed. This means a patient’s individual symptoms and current functional level will determine the amount and type of exercise no matter what stage of treatment they are in. This may mean different levels and type of exercise at different stages of treatment.

How can I exercise safely?
Exercise physiologists are university qualified allied health professionals who specialise in the body’s physiological response to exercise. Allsports Exercise Physiologists are specially trained to assess, prescribe exercise, and supervise chronic disease populations (inclusive of oncology patients) all of which is aimed to establish a therapeutic response.