CLL Support Association
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Exercise can improve cancer recovery and reduce health-care costs

Exercise can improve cancer recovery and reduce health-care costs

"Exercise has been shown to dramatically improve the lives of people living with cancer, yet it is being underutilised. This is despite the fact it costs next to nothing to administer and research shows it improves patient outcomes while driving down healthcare costs." While Rob Newton, Foundation Professor in Exercise and Sports Science and Favil Singh, Research Academic and Lecturer in Clinical Exercise Physiology, Edith Cowan University, Western Australia explain the benefits of exercise for solid cancer patients, the benefits for leukaemia patients would be expected to be similar. In particular "Supervised resistance training through lifting weights and aerobic exercise such as walking, jogging and cycling can help build fitness, improve physical function and increase physical reserve capacity. This means patients are in better shape to receive cancer treatments." :

See also Exercise is the best medicine after surgery or cancer treatment. Introducing a new field of study "Exercise Oncology Research" :


4 Replies

Thanks Neil,

Another good one.  My kids are getting me a "fit bit" for mothers day.  With CLL the fatique can make you want to stay on the couch which is exactly the opposite of what you should do.  I have made a resolution to do something "active" every day.  Swimming, walking, riding my bike.  Something.  I noticed that I feel better when I move more and feel worse when I don't.  Even with CLL our bodies are incredible machines.  Thanks for this reminder.  Be well.



Great post as usual Neil .

I think we all feel so much better for some exercise .Im sure also that that is why we all say we feel so much better when the sun shines .We get out and about more which makes for being more alert and less aches and pains .

I don't think you have to tear about like a lunatic though ,even a godd walk and a bit of stretching with some yoga does it for me .

Hope you are good and enjoying that beautiful country of yours .



Despite being a little older than some on this site, I did a fair amount of resistance training and also walked regularly, prior to and following cancer treatment.

My consultant was surprised that I coped relatively well with FCR treatment (despite cardiac issues) and I have remained well since (apart from some weight gain due to thyroid issues).

This could be down to luck but I think the exercise can take some credit.


Many of us will be contemplating with regret our weight gain over the festive season and no doubt seriously considering adding getting fit/losing weight to our list of New Year's resolutions. Further to the additional benefits outlined in the above post, here's an encouraging article from the American Society of Clinical Oncology that reports on the available evidence about how exercise reduces the risk of different cancers - Should Cancer Doctors Prescribe Exercise? PART I: Role of Exercise in Cancer Prevention:

With our known greater risk of developing secondary cancers with CLL, this is yet another good reason to take fitness seriously.

Plus yet another article on why doctors should consider prescribing exercise:- Improving Lifestyles, One Patient at a Time - We need to do a better job motivating patients to exercise, eat better



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