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Exercise is Medicine – Research Zone

24th January 2021


Evidence-Based Exercise Recommendations to Improve Mental Wellbeing in Women with Breast Cancer during Active Treatment: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

(December 2020)

Supervised exercise interventions during adjuvant therapy has a moderate positive effect on quality of life and small improvements in mental wellbeing such as anxiety, body image, depression, overall quality of life, and emotional function.


What this means for people with cancer?

People with cancer should participate in at least 50 minutes of moderate-vigorous intensity physical activity each week to reduce side effects of the disease and treatments. This includes resistance training at 30-90% 1RM and aerobic training 30-90% of HR max. 



Don’t avoid the hills. Hill walking is a great way to get to exercise at a moderate-high intensity and reap the benefits of physical activity. 


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Relationship between Fatigue and Physical Activity in a Polish Cohort of Multiple Sclerosis Patients

(November 2020)


Fatigue is a common and disabling symptom of multiple sclerosis (MS). This study investigated the impact of low, moderate and high levels of physical activity on levels of fatigue in people with relapsing-remitting MS. Findings showed that participants with lower level of physical activity had higher levels of fatigue which consequently negatively impacts cognitive, psychosocial and physical functioning. On the other hand, people with higher levels of physical activity reported lower levels of fatigue. However it is still unknown which exercises have the most beneficial effect on fatigue. 


What this means for people with MS?

People with MS should take part in at least 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic exercise (50-70% of max heart rate) or 75 minutes a week of vigorous aerobic exercise a week (70-85% of max heart rate) as well as resistance training with the use of weights. 



Avoid the fatigue boom-bust cycle by gradually increasing your level of activity. Start with shorter and fewer workouts per week and gradually increase these. Get in touch with to find out more about exercising with fatigue. 


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Evidence of Rehabilitative Impact of Progressive Resistance Training (PRT) Programs in Parkinson Disease: An Umbrella Review 

(May 2020)

10 weeks of progressive resistance training improves strength, balance, power and functional abilities in people with PD. Improvements in strength and power could also have a significant impact on bradykinesea and therefore improve independence, functional mobility and reduce the risk of falls.


What this means for people with Parkinson’s?
It is important for people with PD to practice progressive strength training in combination with balance training.


In order to see benefits from this training it is necessary to follow three points:

1) Progressive overload – gradually increase the physical stress to the body e.g. going for extra repetitions, heavier weights or a longer time under tension.
2) Specificity – a training programme should be relevant and appropriate for the individual and their goals e.g. improving functional movements such as a push, pull and squat.
3) Variation – training should be varied to ensure the body can adapt to the response of different demands.



Make a note of your strength during specific exercises e.g. how many sit to stands you can do in 1 minute to ensure you are progressing.


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