Is it safe to exercise with cancer?
Becoming more active or continuing to stay active during and after cancer is both safe and a positive change you can make to your lifestyle. Research strongly highlights to avoid inactivity and states some physical activity is better than none.
Cancer treatments will often cause side effects that can impact your daily activities, physical function, mental well-being and quality of life.Exercising and moving more can help to improve symptoms related to cancer at every stage of treatment and recovery.
Regular exercise helps to:
- Improve your energy level.
- Reduce cancer-related fatigue.
- Maintain and improve strength.
- Increase flexibility and range of motion.
- Improve balance and lower your risk of falls.
- Maintain independence and normal daily activities.
- Improve your mental health and self-esteem helping reduce anxiety and depression.
- Improve your quality of life.
- Help look after your heart.
- Help you maintain a healthy weight.
- Increase your confidence.
The recommendation for people touched by cancer is to avoid inactivity and to move more. The types and amount of exercise recommended for cancer survivors are similar to the UK public health guidelines for the general population. Adults are advised to include different activities and do at least 2½ hours (150 minutes) of physical activity a week.
How can an exercise cancer specialist help me?
While the key messages are to avoid inactivity and to move more during and beyond cancer, you may feel nervous or concerned you might injure yourself.
Everybody Sport and Recreation offers a 12 week Cancer Rehabilitation scheme for £27 which is designed to support people living with cancer and beyond.
Our Level 4 cancer exercise specialists have an understanding of the effects of cancer and its treatments. They take this into consideration when working with you. Cancer refers to more than a 100 different specific diseases, so each cancer survivor will have unique factors to consider, which our specialist instructors will consider and the following will influence the type of exercise recommended to you:
- The type of treatment(s) you are receiving or have completed. Common cancer treatments often include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, or some combination of these.
- The specific effects of the disease and its treatments on the body. These may be specific to an area of the body or can have more wide-spread effects throughout the body.
- The point at which you are at in your treatment. The ability of a cancer survivor to participate in exercise (and their training response) may vary depending on whether they are currently receiving or have completed treatment.
12 Week Exercise Programme (£27 charge):
We offer a 12 week monitoring programme consisting of initial introductory 1:1 consultation with Level 4 cancer rehabilitation Instructor, 6 week 1:1 review and 12 week 1:1 review and access to supervised gym sessions.
There will be an opportunity for a personalised 1:1 induction programme into gym facilities by Level 4 qualified instructor.
As part of this programme you will get and receive guidance to all leisure centre facilities e.g. swimming pool, Aqua Relax sessions, fitness classes, gym, health classes etc
Prior booking is required before attending the first session.
Before the first session a short consultation will need to be completed with the Instructor.
A referral form will need to be completed in order for an individual to access these activities. Please contact Everybody Healthy on [email protected], phone: 01270 685589 to find out more.
Meet our Members:
Seven years ago I was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. After a major operation and chemo I returned to work, but I was extremely unfit! I was afraid to do any exercise and I used the very convenient excuse of ‘not having time’ to exercise.
Four years ago I was referred by the Macmillan unit at Leighton Hospital to a new Specialist Rehabilitation programme starting at Crewe Lifestyle gym. I went along and met Kevin Morris who is trained to understand the requirements of those getting back into exercise after illness.
I joined a great group of people who meet at the gym twice a week. We stretch, exercise, laugh, chat, cool down and stay for coffee in the cafe. We are there to support each other and encourage new members. It has been the BEST decision I have made since becoming ill. Kevin and the others on the team have given me the confidence to exercise sensibly and I am now more fit than I was before becoming ill. And I feel better having exercised.
It took me about 3 years post my operation and I was afraid to exercise. I attend a pancreatic cancer support group and was referred. I budded up with another supported and we did it together.
I couldn’t even do 5 mins on the bike, I was so breathless. But over time I found my energy levels got better, I was able to do more house work and walking about. I feel my body image has improved too.
I would highly recommend this programme for anyone who wants to improve their health.
I used to exercise at another gym before but after my treatment I wanted to have reassurance from a trained a qualified member of staff. My MacMillian Nurse referred me to Crewe Lifestyle Centre, I feel much better, feel great after exercise. I couldn’t walk up the stairs without being breathless. I found after each session I walked a little more and more each time and now I’m able to go and enjoy my holidays away, training 3 times a week and feel much better.
Sue and Jeans Advice…
Definitely recommend it! I would suggest following any advice given which is starting off slow, small steps and build up on this with the instructor Kevin.
It’s reassuring having a qualified instructor guiding you. The group is fun, sociable and supportive. This has been life changing for us.