Home > Journals > The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness > Past Issues > Articles online first > The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2018 Mar 01



Publication history
Cite this article as


A Journal on Applied Physiology, Biomechanics, Preventive Medicine,
Sports Medicine and Traumatology, Sports Psychology

Indexed/Abstracted in: Chemical Abstracts, CINAHL, Current Contents/Clinical Medicine, EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), Scopus
Impact Factor 1,215



The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2018 Mar 01

DOI: 10.23736/S0022-4707.18.08131-8


language: English

Breast cancer: effectiveness of a one-year unsupervised exercise program

Gabriele MASCHERINI , Benedetta TOSI, Chiara GIANNELLI, Elisabetta GRIFONI, Sonia DEGL'INNOCENTI, Giorgio GALANTI

Sport and Exercise Medicine Unit, Clinical and Experimental Medicine Department, University of Florence, Florence, Italy


BACKGROUND: Improvements in prevention and therapeutic strategies over the years have increased the numbers of breast cancer survivors considerably. Sedentary behavior is now acknowledged to be a risk factor for cancer and cancer relapse. Currently, there are different approaches to increasing the effectiveness of long-term physical activity in these patients. The aim of this study was to verify the long-term effectiveness of a home-based program for active lifestyle change in overweight breast cancer survivors.
METHODS: We enrolled 43 women (age 51.5±9.9 years), who underwent an evaluation of their spontaneous physical activity levels, their baseline aerobic capacity through a 6-Minute Walking Test (6MWT), their flexibility, grip and lower limb strength, and their body composition. We repeated the measurements of these physical and anthropometric parameters six times during one year of unsupervised exercise.
RESULTS: At the beginning of the program the sample showed a moderate level of spontaneous physical activity (physical activity level=1.44±0.12, steps/day=7420.3±1622.3). After being prescribed an individual exercise program, a significant reduction in BMI (T0=27.9±4.3, T5= 25.8±3.0 kg/m2; p<0.001) and skinfold sum was observed (T0=99.5±25.2, T5=86.2±22.7 mm; p=0.019), with a parallel maintenance of cell mass (T0= 21.4±3.3, T5= 22.5±3.0 kg; p=0.654). The functional parameters showed an increase in lower limb muscle fitness and a reduction in diastolic blood pressure after 6 MWT (T0= 78.4±10.1, T5= 72.5±14.9 mmhg; p=0.032).
CONCLUSIONS: Physical activity is recommended for cancer patients; this model of prescribing unsupervised exercise seems to ensure optimal compliance, thus allowing long-term therapeutic efficacy.

KEY WORDS: Cancer - Exercise prescription - Home based exercise - Lifestyle - Body composition

top of page

Publication History

Article first published online: March 01, 2018
Manuscript accepted: January 17, 2018
Manuscript revised: January 4, 2018
Manuscript received: September 4, 2017

Cite this article as

Mascherini G, Tosi B, Giannelli C, Grifoni E, Degl'Innocenti S, Galanti G. Breast cancer: effectiveness of a one-year unsupervised exercise program. J Sports Med Phys Fitness 2018 Mar 01. DOI: 10.23736/S0022-4707.18.08131-8

Corresponding author e-mail