Advancements in the treatment of cancer are leading to better overall survivorship outcomes; conversely, treatments can cause additional adverse effects. Exercise is an effective intervention used to negate the side effects associated with chemotherapy; however, specific types of exercise remain understudied. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of Tai Chi on self-efficacy, quality-of-life (QOL), and cancer-related fatigue and understand the lived experience and perceived benefits of patients taking chemotherapy involved in a Tai Chi program. A quasi-experimental design, guided by Bandura’s Social Cognitive Theory, was used to explore the differences between a convenience sample of six individuals with cancer taking chemotherapy. Following 8-weeks of Tai Chi classes, focus groups were conducted with the intervention group. Pre-test/posttest scores for fatigue, self-efficacy, and QOL were analyzed using RM-ANOVA to compare the means between and within groups. Inductive thematic analysis was used to interpret focus group transcripts. Qualitative findings were compared with quantitative results to determine corroboration and to provide enhanced understanding of the findings. Tai Chi appears to be an effective and feasible exercise for individuals with cancer receiving chemotherapy.

Date of publication

Spring 4-12-2018

Document Type

Dissertation (Local Only Access)



Persistent identifier


Committee members

Barbara Haas, Melinda Hermanns, Eric Stocks, Yong Tai Wang


PhD in Nursing