The Exercise Oncology Lab (EOL) is dedicated exclusively on developing, assessing, and evaluating exercise studies in cancer survivors. It is a multi-purpose laboratory allowing the space to be transformed for a variety of intervention modalities (e.g., distance-based, supervised), as well as physical function and exercise testing.
Mission: to promote physical activity as an essential component in cancer control and survivorship.
We focus on a variety of research questions including:
- Can exercise help manage treatment-related side effects?
- What is the role of exercise for cognitive functioning?
- What is the optimal exercise program for benefits?
- How do we maintain exercise levels throughout the cancer care continuum?
The purpose of this study is to determine the effects of a 12-week intervention (Fitbit + behvioural counselling) vs. Fitbit-only control group in reducing sedentary behaviour among prostate cancer survivors.
This study is designed to examine the relationship between exercise and cognitive function before and after chemotherapy for breast cancer. Understanding the role of physical activity as it relates to cognitive problems will help us to develop physical activity programs to reduce these cognitive defecits in the long term.
The purpose of this study is to examine the association between physical fitness and cognitive function in metastatic kidney cancer survivors receiving immunotherapy to develop tailored physical activity programs.
The Exercise Oncology Lab is funded by the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) and is dedicated exclusively to developing, assessing, and evaluating behaviour change interventions in cancer survivors. The Exercise Oncology Lab contains four suites with the Exercise Suite as the main space, which houses the exercise training and testing space to enable the development and testing of exercise interventions. This space is also equiped with objective measures for exercise and sedentary behaviour including Actigraph accelerometers and Activpal inclinometers. The Behavioural Counselling Suite is used for behavioural counselling sessions necessary for long term exercise maintenance. The Analysis Suite contains data processing and analysis software used in behavioural interventions. The Biomarker Suite (directed by Dr. Daniel Santa Mina) is a wet lab dedicated to understanding the mechanisms between exercise and cancer- and treatment-related symptoms.
News & Events
Natalie Cuda (MSc. candidate) presents her research on 'Changes in Physical Activity and Well Being among Cancer Survivors During the COVID-19 Pandemic' at the International Society of Behavioural Nutrition and Physical Activity (ISBNPA) Annual Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona.
Denise Bastas (undergraduate student) presents her research presentation on 'Physical Activity Attitudes and Counselling Practices in Oncology Healthcare Providers Working with Kidney Cancer Survivors' at the Eastern Canada Sport and Exercise Psychology Symposium Annual Meeting in March 2019 in Vaughan, Ontario.
Alexis Whitehorn (MSc. candidate) presents her research poster on ‘Motivational Outcomes of a Community-Based Program to Increase Physical Activity in Breast Cancer Survivors’ at the Society of Behavioral Medicine's 40th Annual Meeting in March 2019 in Washington, D.C.
Ally Tabaczynski (MSc. candidate) presents her research poster on ‘Demographic, Medical, Social-Cognitive, and Environmental Correlates of Meeting Strength Training Guidelines in Kidney Cancer Survivors’ at the Canadian Society for Psychomotor Learning and Sport Psychology Annual Conference in October 2018 in Toronto, Ontario.
Ally Tabaczynski (MSc. candidate) presents her research poster on ‘Reallocation of Time Spent in Sleep, Activity and Sedentary Behaviour: Associations on Quality of Life in Kidney Cancer Survivors’ at the Society of Behavioral Medicine's 39th Annual Meeting in April in New Orleans, LA.
Resources for Cancer Survivors
These resources may be helpful if you are a cancer survivor and/or caregiver. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle through exercise and good nutrition is an important step in the journey to recovery.
Get Active, Sit Less! Exercise Guidebook for Kidney Cancer Survivors© in PDF format. This guide book is designed to help kidney cancer survivors increase their physical activity and reduce their sitting time. Download document with this link: Kidney Cancer Guidebook (English) or Kidney Cancer Guidebook (French)
Researchers and practitioners wishing to use this guidebook for research or practice-related purposes, please contact Dr. Linda Trinh: firstname.lastname@example.org
There is no need to contact Dr. Trinh if you are downloading the book for your personal use.
Please contact the Exercise Oncology lab at email@example.com or (416) 946-5856 if interested in participating in the current studies.
The Exercise Oncology Lab is currently recruiting breast cancer survivors between 18-65 years old who are scheduled to receive adjuvent chemotherapy to participate in a study investigating exercise and cognitive function.
The Exercise Oncology Lab is currently recruiting metastatic kidney cancer survivors (aged 18+) to participate in a study investigating the relationship between exercise cognitive function.
The Exercise Oncology Lab is currently recruiting prostate cancer survivors (aged 18+) to participate in a 12-week program focused on moving more and sitting less. Watch the iSTRIDE video and view the flyer below for more information.
The EOL is currently recruiting highly motivated graduate students at the MSc and PhD level. Please contact Dr. Linda Trinh (firstname.lastname@example.org) with a CV and cover letter outlining your research interests in exercise oncology.
Want to hear about a day in the life at the EOL? Read an excerpt by one of the undergraduate students in our lab here.
The Exercise Oncology Laboratory (EOL) is located in the Warren Stevens Building at the University of Toronto.
55 Harbord Street, Toronto ON.
Allyson (Ally) Tabaczynski is a PhD Candidate in the Exercise Oncology Lab at the University of Toronto. Her research interests include physical activity behaviour change in those living with and beyond cancer. She is interested in understanding the factors leading to physical activity adoption and maintenance. Her work is guided by behavioural theory to develop evidence-based interventions to aid cancer survivors in making lasting physical activity behaviour change. Ally's research recognizes social environment to be a critical component for behaviour change, and therefore seeks to mobilize survivors' natural and peer support networks for changing physical activity behaviour.
Lauren Voss is a second year PhD student working in the Exercise Oncology Lab at the University of Toronto. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Exercise and Health Physiology from the University of Calgary and a Master of Science in Kinesiology from the University of Lethbridge. Lauren is also a CSEP-certified Clinical Exercise Physiologist. She is interested in the role that sedentary behaviour can play in improving functional outcomes in cancer survivors. Lauren hopes to pursue a career in academia where she can develop sedentary behaviour interventions to promote healthy aging for older adults and cancer survivors.
Alexis Whitehorn graduated from the University of Toronto with a Master of Science in Kinesiology and previously from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology in 2018. She is currently working in the Exercise Oncology Lab as a first year PhD student at the University of Toronto. Her research interest involves home-based functional fitness testing with cancer survivors. Alexis is committed to owning her own personal training studio in the future. She plans to motivate clients to become physically active and maintain a healthier lifestyle.
Alyssa Neville is a second year Master's student working in the Exercise Oncology Lab at the University of Toronto. She graduated from Dalhousie University in 2018 with a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology and spent two years after her undergraduate studies working on various research studies at Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabiliation Hospital in Toronto. She is interested in the effect of exercise, in particular yoga, on cognitive outcomes in cancer patients and survivors. In the future, Alyssa hopes to combine her passion for research and healthcare and advocate for exercise interventions as an important part of cancer treatment.
Natalie Cuda is a second year Master's student in the Exercise Oncology Lab. She graduated with a Bachelor of Kinesiology from the University of Toronto. Natalie is interested in examining the relationship between physical activity behaviour and mental health in breast cancer survivors. She hopes to use her findings to develop interventions that will optimize both physical and mental health in the cancer survivor population.
Golnaz Ghazinour is a first year Master's student working in the Exercise Oncology Lab at the University of Toronto. She graduated from the University of Toronto with a Bachelor's degree in Kinesiology and Physical Education. Golnaz is interested in investigating the role of physical activity in cognitive and physical function of cancer survivors during and after the course of treatment. She hopes to use her findings to develop effective physical activity interventions to improve the well-being of cancer survivors.
Denise is a research assistant working in the Exercise Oncology Lab at the University of Toronto. She graduated with a Master of Science in Kinesiology from the University of Toronto. She is interested in the field of exercise oncology as she believes it has the potential to have significant impacts on the lives and functioning of cancer survivors and believes it should be incorporated as an integral part of cancer care and treatment. She is particularly interested in increasing healthcare professionals' role in counselling physical activity to cancer survivors.
Lamisa Syed is a reseach assistant working in the Exercise Oncology Lab at the University of Toronto. She graduated from McMaster University with a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry and a minor in psychology. Her research interests in the lab are how to explore cancer survivors' quality of life and psychosocial factors can impact their physical activity levels and sedentary behaviour. In the future, Lamisa hopes to work with cancer survivors to help achieve their physical activity and functional goals with adaptable and evidence-based solutions.
Michelle Ha is a recent graduate from the University of Toronto holding an Honours Bachelor of Science in Neuroscience. She is currently working in the Exercise Oncology Lab as a research assistant and is interested in the impact of reducing sedentary behaviour on cognition and cardiovascular health. Michelle hopes to minimize comorbidity incidence and increase quality of life in cancer survivors by encouraging sustainable lifestyle changes.
University of Toronto alumni
Lucas Arago, BKin (2021-2022)
Sarah Ryan, BKin (2021-2022)
Adam Di Salvo, BKin (2020-2021)
Shumeng Duan, BKin (2019-2020)
Cherry Manzano, BKin (2019-2020)
Princess Ulona, BKin (2018-2019)
Marlena Petrakis, BKin (2018-2019)
University of Illinois Graduate AlumnI
Dominick Strom, MSc (2017-2018)
Jaime Wong, MSc (2016-2018)
University of Illinois underGraduate AlumnI
Joshua Lee, BSc (Winter 2018)
Ashley Raehsler, BSc (Winter 2018)
Marianna Zalova, BSc (Winter 2018)
Maddie Forouhi, BSc (2017-2018)
Madeline Gagnon, BSc (2017-2018)
Sophia Kim, BSc (2017-2018)
Jacqueline Surd, BSc (2017-2018)
Samantha Gibbons, BSc (2015-2018)
Waleed Aldadah, BSc (2016-2017)
Adrian Tellez, BSc (2016-2017)
Michelle Wilson, BSc (2016-2017)