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4 Exercises That Are A Must For Lung Cancer Patients To Breathe Easy

4 Exercises That Are A Must For Lung Cancer Patients To Breathe Easy
4 Exercises That Can help Lung Cancer Patients

Physical exercises can be overwhelming for lung cancer patients, but, they can also help them cope and slow down the progression of the disease. Read on to find out how it can benefit them!

Written by Kinkini Gupta |Updated : August 2, 2022 11:06 AM IST

Lung cancer just like other cancers develops at the cellular levels. It originates in the lining of air passages and in the tissues. the abnormal cells keep multiplying and eventually grows out of control. that is when it start spreading to the lungs. It spreads to the lungs first before affecting or metastasizing to other body parts. There are two types of lung cancer, non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and small cell lung cancer (SCLC). Chain tobacco smokers are usually diagnosed with NSCLC or squamous cell carcinoma. But smokers are not the only people who could get lung cancer. Non-smokers usually get detected with SCLC, also known as adenocarcinoma. Every person is equally at risk of catching this type of cancer.

The thought of exercise can be overwhelming if a person is suffering from lung cancer. But a well-designed exercise program may help patients feel better physically and mentally. It can help them cope with cancer treatments, decrease cancer-related fatigue, and reduce the severity of other treatment-related side effects. It can also help stop the progression of the disease.


On World Lung Cancer Day, let us take a look at how lung cancer patients can survive this deadly disease.

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Diaphragmatic Breathing

People suffering from lung cancer experience difficulty breathing. This is one of the major problems or symptoms faced by cancer patients. This can hinder their level of activity. But experts suggest that even patients suffering form lung problems should also try and stay active as it can help them fight the disease. This will also help them improve endurance and make it easy for them to go on about their daily lives.

One key breathing exercise is called diaphragmatic breathing through pursed lips. This exercise will strengthen the diaphragm, a muscle between the lungs and abdomen. It will allow more air to move in and out without tiring the muscles of the chest. If a person is having shortness of breath, this exercise can help them regulated their breathing.

Walking Or Running

Lung cancer patients have another way to cope with their condition i.e by daily aerobic exercise. This will improve the strength of their heart and oxygen capacity. Any kind of aerobic exercise will be beneficial for them. But because lung cancer patients already are low on energy levels, experts recommend starting of their aerobic routine slowly. Walking or slow jogging is very good for the lungs. They can also try dancing as it can be less intense and more fun. Any exercise that can increase the heart rate is good for patients.


Stretching increases the flow of blood and oxygen to the muscles, improves muscle elasticity, and helps the body to repair itself. Daily upper body stretching exercises expands the chest cavity and increases lung capacity. This allows for free movement of the lungs and diaphragm, which encourages deeper breathing and helps with shortness of breath. This is particularly important after radiation therapy, which can cause muscle tightness.

Building Your Strength

Strength training can greatly benefit patients of lung cancer. Therapies such as chemotherapy and radiation therapy can weaken the muscles and stretch training can help bring it back. Lung cancer patients find it hard to stay active for a long time. Because of constant fatigue, they have to lie down or rest a lot. This also leads to loss of muscle mass and eventually loss of strength. By getting stronger through strength training, it may be possible to return to work and take care of daily responsibilities sooner. Strength training can also help improve your balance and posture, as well as increase bone strength.

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