Exercise and cancer

Research shows that exercise has many benefits both during and after cancer treatment. It can help with side effects, speed up recovery, and improve quality of life.

It’s also a great way for carers to improve their physical and mental wellbeing.

The videos below take you through a range of exercises to improve strength and flexibility.

Talk to your doctor before starting this or any other exercise program.

How will exercising help you?


The physical benefits

The mental health benefits

How exercise can reduce the risk of cancer recurrence

Getting motivated

How we can help

Face to face exercise and nutrition program (Free)

This program introduces survivors and carers to physical activity, healthy eating, and practical information, to help them adjust to life after cancer treatment.

Phone-based exercise and nutrition program (Free)

This program provides survivors health coaching over the phone to help you get active, eat better and feel better. Available to people who have completed cancer treatment.

About exercising with cancer during treatment

Learn more about the benefits of exercise, safety tips and how to exercise during treatment

How to find an exercise professional

Exercise physiologists and physiotherapists use exercise to help manage injury and chronic diseases. Learn about how they can help people with cancer.

Questions to ask your doctor about exercise and cancer

You should talk to your doctor and/or exercise professional before you start any exercise program. Here are some good questions to ask them.

Exercise videos

Exercise your core

Lower back stretch

You will need to sit on a chair or bench for this exercise.

Seated chair rotation

You will need a chair for this exercise.

One-leg balance

You may need to stand near a chair or wall for this exercise.

Pelvic floor exercises

You can perform these exercises standing up, sitting down or lying down.

Pelvic tilt

You will need to use a soft, firm surface or an exercise mat for this exercise.

Clamshell

You will need to use a soft, firm surface or an exercise mat for this exercise.

Bird-dog

You will need to use a soft, firm surface or an exercise mat for this exercise.

Single or double leg lift

This is an advanced exercise.

Plank

This is an advanced exercise.

Crunch

This is an advanced exercise.

Side plank

This is an advanced exercise.

Sit-up

This is an advanced exercise.

Exercise your upper body

Shoulder stretch

You can perform this stretch standing up or sitting down.

Triceps stretch

You can perform this stretch standing up or sitting down.

Pectoral and biceps stretch

You will need to stand near a wall for this exercise.

Biceps curl seated

You will need a chair and a resistance band or hand weights for this exercise.

Biceps curl

You will need hand weights for this exercise.

Biceps curl – with resistance band

You will need a resistance band or hand weights for this exercise.

Seated row on a chair

You will need a chair and a resistance band for this exercise.

Seated row on the floor

You will need a resistance band for this exercise.

Standing row

For this exercise, you will need a resistance band attached to a fixed point such as a handrail.

Triceps extension upwards

You will need a resistance band or hand weights for this exercise. This is an advanced exercise.

Triceps extension downwards

You will need a stable chair and bench or stool for this exercise. This is an advanced exercise.

Chest press seated

You will need a chair and a resistance band for this exercise.

Chest press standing

For this exercise, you will need a resistance band attached to a fixed point, such as a pole.

Chest press table

You will need to stand near a stable table or high bench for this exercise.

Shoulder press

You will need a pole, bar or hand weights for this exercise.

Upright row

You will need hand weights for this exercise.

Upright row – with resistance band

You will need a resistance band or hand weights for this exercise.

Standing push-up

You will need to stand near a wall for this exercise.

Standing push-up

You will need to stand near a wall for this exercise.

Modified push-up

You may like to use a exercise mat for this exercise.

Modified push-up

You may like to use a exercise mat for this exercise.

Close grip push-up

This is an advanced exercise.

Full push-up

This is an advanced exercise.

Triceps dip feet on floor

You will need a stable chair or bench for this exercise. This is an advanced exercise.

Exercise your lower body

Calf stretch

You may need a wall or chair for support during this exercise.

Quadriceps stretch

You may need a wall or chair for support during this exercise.

Hamstrings stretch

For this exercise, you will need a stool or box that’s about 30 cm high. You may need to stand near a wall for balance.

Calf raise

You may need to stand near a wall or chair for this exercise.

Wall squat

You will need to stand near a wall for this exercise.

Chair rise

You will need a chair for this exercise.

Unsupported squat

This is an advanced exercise.

Lunge

You may need to stand near a wall or chair for this exercise. This is an advanced exercise.

Deadlift

You will need a resistance band or hand weights for this exercise. This is an advanced exercise.

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