UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Feasibility of a Remotely Delivered Strength and Balance Training Program for Older Adults with Cancer Sattar, Schroder; Haase, Kristen; Penz, Kelly; Effa, Corrie; Nedeljak, Joni; Chalchal, Haji; Souied, Osama; Amir, Eitan; Pitters, Eric; Campbell, Diane; et al.


Falls are a major issue among older adults with cancer and lead to interruptions in cancer treatment. Resistance and balance training can prevent falls in older adults, but minimal evidence is available regarding the older cancer population, who often have unique risk factors. We used a pre–post design to assess the feasibility of a remotely delivered exercise program that progressed in difficulty and its efficacy on lower body strength, balance, and falls in older adults with cancer who had prior in-person exercise experience. Twenty-six older adults with cancer completed the intervention. Attendance rate for the virtual component was 97.6% and for the independent component was 84.7%. Participants perceived the program as rewarding and enjoyable (100%), felt this program prepared them to exercise on their own (92%), were confident to continue exercising on their own (81%), and would recommend the program to other patients (100%). The median balance score at baseline and end-of-study was 4 (IQR = 0). The median chair-stand time decreased from 9.2 s (IQR = 3.13) to 7.7 s (IQR = 4.6). A statistically significant difference in lower body strength (r = 0.68, p = 0.001) was detected post-intervention. The findings from this study can inform the design of a larger randomized trial.

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