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Bodywork and Body-Based Practices

While your body is fighting disease or recovering from treatment there are many symptoms that can be subdued by shifting focus from onto the body. Pain, fatigue, stress, stiff joints, weakness, nausea, depression are common side effects to cancer treatment and diagnosis. With the techniques listed below you’ll find you have numerous options to choose from to combat these symptoms. Some practices are extremely active, some are passive and some are right in the middle of the spectrum. 


Whether you are able dance, run, play golf or simply walk outside to water the garden you’re doing something that classifies as exercise. With exercise you can relieve stress and fatigue, loosen joints and build muscle. Whatever you can do – do so. It’s all exercise.

-         http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23616972

-         http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23582894

-         http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23540747


The basis of massage is muscles and soft tissue which are rubbed and manipulated to relax the area. Despite rumors, massage does not spread cancer cells and treatments have proven to be an effective yet non-invasive means of calm relaxation. 

-         http://nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/100110.htm

-         http://nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/051809.htm

-         http://nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/110608.htm

-         http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23341418

-         http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23368724



This practice is an ancient medical technique that involves very thin metal needles inserted into the skin in specific places to relieve a variety of symptoms including nausea, pain and tension.

-         http://nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/091012

-         http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23560843



Yoga is an exercise that follows precise positions to stretch and stabilize certain muscles. Special attention is given to incorporating breathing into movement and pausing for moments of meditation. This can be a very low impact total body stretch or a very intense muscle building activity. Benefits include relaxation, muscle toning, reduced heart rate and blood pressure, stress and depression relief.

-         http://nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/112409.htm

-         http://nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/100908.htm

-         http://nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/102411.htm

-         http://nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/010913

-         http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23480018

-         http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23439736

-         http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23400315


Tai Chi and Qi-Gong

Tai Chi is similar to yoga but without pauses for meditation. One is in constant, slow, gentle movement flowing from one posture to the next with great attention to your breath. Many find they need total concentration and must relieve their minds from other thoughts and worries as a temporary escape.

Qi-Gong is quite similar to Tai Chi with an added practice of guiding energy through the body through imagery.

-         http://nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/071910.htm

-         http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23470186

-         http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23538081