Exercise barriers in Korean colorectal cancer patients

Dong Woo Kang, Jae Youn Chung, Mi Kyung Lee, Junga Lee, Ji Hye Park, Dong Il Kim, Lee W. Jones, Joong Bae Ahn, Nam Kyu Kim, Justin Y. Jeon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


Background: It has been proved that participating in exercise improves colorectal cancer patients' prognosis. This study is to identify barriers to exercise in Korean colorectal cancer patients and survivors. Materials and Methods: A total of 427 colorectal cancer patients and survivors from different stages and medical status completed a self-administered questionnaire that surveyed their barriers to exercise and exercise participation. Results: The greatest perceived exercise barriers for the sampled population as a whole were fatigue, low level of physical fitness, and poor health. Those under 60-years old reported lack of time (p=0.008), whereas those over 60 reported low level of physical fitness (p=0.014) as greater exercise barriers than their counterparts. Women reported fatigue as a greater barrier than men (p<0.001). Those who were receiving treatment rated poor health (p=0.0005) and cancer-related factors as greater exercise barriers compared to those who were not receiving treatment. A multivariate model found that other demographic and medical status were not potential factors that may affect exercise participation. Further, for those who were not participating in physical activity, tendency to be physically inactive (p<0.001) and lack of exercise skill (p<0.001) were highly significant barriers, compared to those who were participating in physical activity. Also, for those who were not meeting ACSM guidelines, cancer-related exercise barriers were additionally reported (p<0.001), compared to those who were. Conclusions: Our study suggests that fatigue, low level of physical fitness, and poor health are most reported exercise barriers for Korean colorectal cancer survivors and there are differences in exercise barriers by age, sex, treatment status, and physical activity level. Therefore, support for cancer patients should be provided considering these variables to increase exercise participation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7539-7545
Number of pages7
JournalAsian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention
Issue number18
Publication statusPublished - 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Epidemiology
  • Oncology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Cancer Research


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