Exercise your way to Better Health

Header photo - ALT DORIT 1 hi resExercise & Lymphedema

Lymphatic circulation is stimulated by exercise and deep breathing. General exercise helps build strength, maintain joint mobility, promote healthy body weight, increase fitness and prevent injury.

Most investigations about exercise and lymphedema have been with people with breast-cancer-related lymphedema.  Little has been published on exercise for lower limbs.  In general, the recommendation is to be as active as you can.


General guidelines regarding exercise

  • Begin or return to any exercise program with the approval of your physician and/or therapist.
  • While studies have shown the benefits of exercise, everyone is different.  Listen to your body and rest when necessary.
  • DLT therapists can demonstrate decongestive exercises appropriate to each individual.
  • Measure your limb once a month or before starting any new exercise activity.
  • According to research it is advisable to wear compression garments while exercising.
  • Whether starting a new physical activity or returning to a previous exercise program, progress slowly, at your own pace and monitor carefully for changes in swelling.
  • Swimming, water exercises, walking, gentle cycling, dance and light aerobics are all beneficial activities for general health.  Such activities are also encouraged during and after cancer treatments.
  • Resistance exercises can begin once your therapist has defined your lymphedema as stable.  Progress gradually with low weights and low repetitions; if possible, seek guidance from a trained professional.

Group exercises

Aquatic lymphatic exercises, integral tai chi, dragon boating, yoga and dance classes are offered in some regions of Quebec.

ALT GROUP hi resAqua Lymphatic Therapy (ALT)
ALT logo hi resThe Tidhar Method©
A fun way to treat your lymphedema!
Tidhar Dorit, PT, ISRAEL



Aqua Lymphatic Therapy (ALT) is based on the Casley-Smith remedial exercises and uses the same principals, yet in an aquatic environment.  The method uses the anatomical principles of the lymphatic system and the forces of the water to achieve the goals of lymphedema therapy.  The water temperature ranges from 31°C to 33°C (78.8-91.4°F). This temperature enables slow movements in a safe way that will not cause increased swelling.  The buoyancy force enables elevating the limbs and thus performing exercises and self massage with minimal effort.  The hydrostatic pressure of water increases lymph and venous flow; it thereby protects the limb from swelling and reduces edema.

ALT is self-treatment in a group setting.  The participants choose from the treatment tools that are available the ones that are best for them individually, enabling them to carry out self-treatment at their convenience.  They receive a chart containing their limb measurement results once each month and from this chart they decide how best to continue their individual plan.  The therapist serves as a resource, but does not direct the individual plan of care. This method provides active opportunities for self-directed care that may enhance self advocacy, independence and self-esteem.

Want to join a class? Click here for Aqua Lymphatic Therapy classes in your area.

To find out more about the Tidhar Method, visit  http://www.aqua-lymphatic-therapy.com/




integral tai chiIntegral TAI CHI*




*Integral Tai Chi (ITC) in ten forms is a series of exercises, relaxation techniques and meditation. Essentially, the forms combine  Tai Chi, Qi Gong, Yoga  and meditation into one holistic system that integrates body, mind and spirit. The forms combine activities and relaxation, movements and stillness through the practice of meditation. Thus these forms are not just simply movements, but also are means to spiritual development.

Join a class of Integral Tai Chi in your area:

Tuesdays: 9:00 am – 11:00 am
Centre Appleton
6585 Côte-des-Neiges Montréal

Saturdays: 9:30 am – 11:30 pm
5790 Côte-des-Neiges , 3rd floor
Métro: Côte-des-Neiges, autobus 165

Information & Reservations :
Lymphedema Association of Quebec
Telephone : 514-979-2463
Email : kcpham@videotron.caIntegral

To find out more about Integral Tai Chi, click here.


homepagebanner2Dragon Boat
Two Abreast



Dragon boating started in China more than 2000 years ago and has become a very recreational and competitive sport. Since 1996, after Dr. Don McKenzie’s study, breast cancer survivors started paddling and creating dragon boat teams all over the world, improving their quality of life. This sport is adapted to people at risk or suffering from lymphedema.

If you are interested in dragon boating, communicate with us and try it for free.

Tel.: 514-387-6132