Sports for and after cancer

Man is not made to live his life in comfort. Nevertheless, everyone knows the desire for rest and one or two days on the sofa. There are good reasons for this wish, because exercise costs energy and of course it is important to keep your strength up. After all, the organism needs movement to remain resilient. For cancer patients, however, this is a little different.


  • Protection or movement
  • Out of sports after diagnosis?
  • What speaks against sport?
  • Return to sport
  • Entertainment sport for everyone

Protection or movement

For a long time, it was a matter of course that sick people, and especially cancer patients, rest and only take on a certain amount of physical stress once they have fully recovered. This basic assessment no longer exists today. Of course, the prerequisites must be in place, because those who suffer from pain or lack strength cannot and do not want to play sports, even if it is a light activity. If you are in poor health, an excursion into the fresh air can already exceed your strength. However, it turns out that athletically highly active cancer patients have a greater chance of recovering faster later. This applies not only to the time after the illness, but also to the time between the different treatment steps.

Out of sports after diagnosis?

There is no general recommendation for athletes with a cancer diagnosis. Every cancer is different and every patient reacts differently. Extensive empirical values ​​cannot always be transferred to everyone affected, even if it makes sense to include the experience of the doctors in the decisions. However, many factors play a role here. Decisive is z. For example, which sport is involved, whether a higher risk of infection and injuries is to be expected and whether there is a risk that the patient will overwhelm himself and thus become overloaded. Performance-oriented athletes must also understand that performance will deteriorate. This can cause considerable frustration, especially for successful athletes. Taken together, this can lead to

What speaks against sport?

First and foremost, doctors will not fundamentally advise against sports if the patient feels they can cope with them. However, should the excessive demands become apparent, such a recommendation can follow. Adult patients are then responsible for themselves. In the case of minors, the legal guardians decide, but doctors can intervene if they consider the behavior of the parents irresponsible. That applies e.g. B. if the bone structure has deteriorated due to the formation of metastases so that the risk of fractures increases. A fracture could have dangerous consequences for the patient, possibly even limb loss. It is essential to avoid this. Especially if it is only a temporary exit from the sport. It doesn’t just have to be risky sports.

Return to sport

When the treatment is complete, it is an important goal to get the patient back into everyday life at a reasonable pace. For athletes, a return to sport is an absolute must. Here, the gentle return is imperative to avoid damage. Experienced trainers know their charges well enough to recognize whether they are physically or mentally overwhelmed. It is then up to them to intervene and caution the athlete. Competitive athletes usually recognize their limits and would rather rely on a gentle build-up before they risk serious health damage that may mean a permanent end.

Entertainment sport for everyone

It doesn’t have to be competitive sports. Even light exercise helps the patient to recover faster. Depending on their personal suitability, those affected can also start with sports. Here therapeutic benefits and fun should be in harmony. During rehab there is almost always the possibility to try out suitable sports. Endurance sports are more suitable than anything that has to do with speed. The most popular sports include Zumba (dancing to brisk music), Nordic walking and aqua aerobics.


The information provided by this means cannot, in any way, replace a direct health care service, nor should it be used for the purpose of establishing a diagnosis, or choosing a treatment in particular cases.
In this service no recommendation will be made, explicitly or implicitly, about drugs, techniques, products, etc … that will be cited for informational purposes only.
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