Breast cancer is a disease that increasingly affects more and more women around us. It is clearly a female health problem, not only because it is suffered by women all over the world, but also because it could be said that it has an impact on their femininity. So much so that, throughout the course of the disease, it is common for feelings of discomfort with one’s own image, discomfort or even social stigma to surface, which significantly deteriorates the self-esteem of women with this diagnosis.

Exercising our body and mind, moving, being active, in short, having time for exercise, is a highly recommended strategy for improving the symptoms associated with the medical and surgical approach to the disease. In the case of self-esteem, research is still scarce, but the results available so far suggest that regular physical exercise would help to improve our self-perception. Specifically, it seems that muscular strength training, among which Pilates is included, would be the form of exercise that generates the greatest benefits in the self-esteem of women who practice it. It also seems that exercise practiced in a group or in a supervised manner generates an added benefit, but in any case more research on the subject is required.

At UMSS we are committed to the therapeutic value of physical exercise and, therefore, we are designing a study on the effect of exercise combined with musical listening on the improvement of self-image and self-esteem of women breast cancer survivors. We hope to begin this intervention in a few months and, of course, we will share the results with all of you!

Mª Jesús Casuso-Holgado

Professor, Physiotherapy Dept. University of Seville