Moving Through Cancer


The mission of Moving Through Cancer is to assure that all people living with and beyond cancer are assessed, advised, referred to and engaged in appropriate exercise and rehabilitation programming as a standard of care. 

The initiative was started as a presidential task force of ACSM president Kathryn Schmitz, Ph.D., M.P.H., FACSM. More recently, an international team of experts came together to form a strategic plan toward the goal of realizing the mission. Focus areas include development of a workforce, programming, and triage pathways and logistics for referral; additional research and evaluation of programming; policy, awareness, marketing, and funding for sustainability. 

Finally, the PATIENT with cancer is the center of all of these efforts. It is the vision of the Moving Through Cancer initiative that everyone living with and beyond cancer is aware of the benefits of physical activity and exercise and is enabled to choose to become and stay active at a level appropriate for them.

Moving Through Cancer has developed a searchable directory to help health care providers, exercise professionals and patients find appropriately trained professionals and programs in their communities.

According to the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), the American Cancer Society (ACS), the US Department of Health and Human Services (USDHHS), and the American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR), exercise has been shown to reduce the risk of cancer incidence for multiple common cancers as shown in this ACSM Infographic:

So… How do we get moving to prevent cancer? ACSM’s Exercise Is Medicine initiative has tips!

The American Institute for Cancer Research also offers tips for getting active to reduce cancer risk.

The US Department of Health and Human Resources has also produced materials to help Americans to "Move Your Way," as well as a Move Your Way video and specific materials to help all adults get active.

 American Cancer Society Links also offers links relevant to Exercise and Cancer Prevention:

What if you’ve already had a diagnosis of cancer?

Exercise Is Medicine for all people living with and beyond cancer according to the American College of Sports Medicine, the American Cancer Society, the American Physical Therapy Association, and the American Society of Clinical Oncology.

Benefits during treatment include improved:

  • Fatigue
  • Quality of life
  • Physical function
  • Body composition
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Sleep
  • Breast Cancer Related Lymphedema

These benefits continue post treatment and for three cancer types (breast, colon, and prostate) there is evidence for reduction of cancer recurrence and mortality. Tips from these organizations:

The American College of Sports Medicine’s Moving Through Cancer initiative offers an educational booklet that is also available in Spanish, as well as a program directory to find exercise programs appropriate for survivors near you.

American Physical Therapy Association also offer resources to get active after a cancer diagnosis.

The American Cancer Society also offers guidance for Physical Activity and the Person With Cancer.

Further, there is an exercise app that has been developed to specifically help people living with and beyond cancer:

Support for the Exercise is Medicine® Initiative is provided by:

Contact United States EIM Representative | 6510 Telecom Dr., Suite 200, Indianapolis, IN 46278 | 317-637-9200 © 2021 American College of Sports Medicine. All rights reserved worldwide. Exercise is Medicine® is a global health initiative managed by the American College of Sports Medicine.