The purpose of the current study was to explore physical activity (PA) levels, exercise preferences, and perceived barriers to PA in childhood cancer survivors.
This cross-sectional study surveyed 120 childhood cancer survivors aged 8-18 years from the pediatric oncology center in South Korea between March and August 2017. The modified Exercise & Quality of Life questionnaire, Korea Youth Risk Behavior Web-based Survey, and Godin Leisure-Time Questionnaire were used to assess PA levels, preferences, and exercise barriers.
Among 120 participants (72 boys, 48 girls) whose average age at the time of the survey was 14.57 ± 3.00 years and the average age at diagnosis was 8.22 years, the three most common diagnoses were acute leukemia (43.3%), brain tumor (13.3%), and malignant lymphoma (10.8%). Only 16 participants (5%) met the PA recommendations for children (at least 60 min of moderate PA per day). The most preferred sporting activities included soccer, basketball, strengthening exercises, badminton, dance, and taekwondo. They generally had positive attitudes toward exercise, and more than 63% of participants intended to exercise the following month. The five most prevalent perceived barriers to exercise were lack of time, poor health, reluctance to sweat, lack of exercise skills, and no exercise partners.
While most childhood cancer survivors did not meet the PA recommendation, most of them agreed that exercise was beneficial, and they intended to participate in the exercise. Exercise and PA programs should be tailored to the personal health and preferences of childhood cancer survivors.

© 2021. The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature.
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