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Fighting cancer is a long, hard battle, both mentally and physically. Despite surviving cancer, the long-term effects of chemotherapy and other treatments can have detrimental effects on patients due to increased fall rates and bone fractures. These injuries can result from a decrease in bone density, balance and range of motion. However, a six-week exercise program was conducted to test its merits in the effort to reduce risk factors of falling and improve physical function in breast cancer survivors.
Why you should include strength training in your breast cancer rehabilitation
While physical activity may be difficult to perform after a long battle with breast cancer, the study proved that it’s worth the extra effort. The full protocol of the study included aerobic, strengthening and balance components using TheraBand resistance exercises. The researchers proved that, as a breast cancer survivor, it is important to engage in regular physical activity and exercise (Lee et al. 2016).. They concluded that their program:
Improves balance, lowering the risk of falls and broken bones
Lee et al. 2016. A Preliminary Study on the Efficacy of a Community-Based Physical Activity Intervention on Physical Function-Related Risk Factors for Falls Among Breast Cancer Survivors. Am J Phys Med Rehabil. 95(8):561-70.