ABOUT FitSTEPS for Life®

The FitSTEPS for Life® program is an individualized, community-based program designed to improve the physical and mental functioning, quality of life, and survival of people living with cancer. The program includes aerobic exercise, muscle strengthening, and stretching techniques specifically designed for participants debilitated by cancer and its treatments. To our knowledge, CFFL provides the only free structured, individualized program of unlimited participation. 


FitSTEPS for Life® has evolved with the avalanche of medical research demonstrating the compelling evidence of exercise’s benefits for cancer patients. For instance:

  • Exercise can improve the survival rate for colon- and breast-cancer survivors up to 50%.
  • Physical fitness enables patients to remain independent during disease treatment and beyond.
  • Exercise eases the side effects of chemotherapy, such as compromised physical and mental function, in addition to nausea, fatigue, and depression.
  • Physical conditioning diminishes the effects of most chronic diseases that frequently coexist with cancer, such as diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, lung disease, obesity, and arthritis.

 Despite this evidence, Dr. Kimmel was unable to find an exercise program designed to meet the local/community needs and circumstances of individual cancer patients. So he set out to develop a program that is tailored to the individual requirements of patients regardless of the type or stage of their cancer, their physical limitations, or their phase of treatment (diagnosis, recurrence, remission, or cure).


A team of oncologists and academicians collaborate with CFFL to incorporate FitSTEPS for Life® as a standard of care for cancer patients. Research Team Members (RTMs) contribute their expertise to develop research studies that investigate the influence of FitSTEPS for Life® on the cancer experience. Favorable research outcomes will enhance the incorporation of exercise into clinical oncology practice.


CFFL’s goal is to enable oncologists and academicians to collaborate in the development of a universally accepted exercise program for incorporation into routine cancer treatment.