Pix­for­mance is a part­ner of the Euro­pean research project FORTEe

with dig­i­tal move­ment ther­a­py get­ting strong to fight child­hood cancer

Under the lead­er­ship of the Uni­ver­si­ty Med­ical Cen­ter Mainz, we and 15 part­ner insti­tu­tions from eight Euro­pean coun­tries coöper­ate to form the joint research project FOR­TEe. The project with the mot­to ”Get strong to fight child­hood can­cer” aims to inves­ti­gate the effec­tive­ness of exer­cise ther­a­py and dig­i­tal health tech­nolo­gies like Pix­for­mance dur­ing can­cer treat­ment in chil­dren and ado­les­cents. As part of the renowned research and inno­va­tion pro­gram “Hori­zon 2020” FOR­TEe has received a fund­ing by the Euro­pean Union of approx­i­mate­ly EUR 6.3 mil­lion over a peri­od of 5.5 years.


Can­cer is a lead­ing cause of death for chil­dren and ado­les­cents in Europe. The com­mon side effects of can­cer treat­ment in chil­dren and ado­les­cents include phys­i­cal inac­tiv­i­ty, can­cer-relat­ed fatigue and an impaired health-relat­ed qual­i­ty of life. FOR­TEe will research the expe­ri­ences of chil­dren and ado­les­cents aged between four and 21 years in a Europe-wide inter­ven­tion­al clin­i­cal tri­al. The project fur­ther aims to inves­ti­gate the effects of a per­son­al­ized, stan­dard­ized and age-appro­pri­ate exer­cise inter­ven­tion on suc­cess­ful can­cer treat­ment in chil­dren and adolescents.

Christoph Schneider

Valerie Bures-Bön­ström,
CEO of Pix­for­mance Sports GmbH

“As a part­ner of this great project, we are very proud to be able to sup­port such an impor­tant issue as can­cer treat­ment for chil­dren and ful­ly endorse the project slo­gan: Let’s get strong against child­hood cancer!”

As a part­ner of this great project, we are very proud to be able to sup­port such an impor­tant issue as can­cer treat­ment for chil­dren and ful­ly endorse the project slo­gan: Let’s get strong against child­hood cancer!”

An impor­tant step for child­hood can­cer research

Adapt­ed exer­cise pro­grams for adult can­cer patients are an increas­ing­ly rec­og­nized treat­ment. How­ev­er, in child­hood can­cer patients, there is still a lack of suf­fi­cient sci­en­tif­ic evi­dence for the effec­tive­ness of this new form of treat­ment.

For chil­dren, it is always more dif­fi­cult to pro­vide sci­en­tif­ic evi­dence, pre­cise­ly because the num­ber of cas­es of chil­dren with can­cer is very small. On the one hand, this is for­tu­nate, but on the oth­er hand, it is also bad luck for the patients, because it real­ly takes a long time to gain new insights through stud­ies. This hap­pens much faster with adults”, said Dr. med. Marie A. Neu, Coör­di­na­tor of the Child­hood Can­cer Cen­ter Mainz, FOR­TEe Sci­en­tif­ic Coör­di­na­tor and Deputy Prin­ci­pal Investigator.

Hygienekonzept Pixformance Training und Therapie

Mit Bewe­gungs­ther­a­pie zu mehr Lebensqualität

The FOR­TEe project there­fore aims to research and demon­strate that sport and exer­cise can also sig­nif­i­cant­ly help and sup­port chil­dren and adolescents.

Our hypoth­e­sis is that the patients who receive this tai­lored exer­cise ther­a­py will derive ben­e­fits from it and that, in par­tic­u­lar, the can­cer-relat­ed exhaus­tion syn­drome fatigue will be pos­i­tive­ly influ­enced. We want to show that exer­cise in child­hood can­cer helps to improve qual­i­ty of life. Or at least to influ­ence that it does not decrease fur­ther.” , Dr. Neu continued.

The exer­cise pro­gram will be sup­port­ed by dig­i­tal tech­nolo­gies enhanc­ing the pio­neer­ing char­ac­ter of the study for the devel­op­ment of nov­el care con­cepts in pedi­atric and ado­les­cent med­i­cine. With the help of vir­tu­al and aug­ment­ed real­i­ty-based devices and a new­ly devel­oped exer­cise app, home-based, fam­i­ly-cen­tered telemed­ical care will be inte­grat­ed into can­cer treat­ment.

Stark gegen Kinderkrebs: Standorte des EU-Projekts FORTEe mit Markierung der 5 Standorte mit Pixformance Stationen

Dig­i­tal­ly sup­port­ed patient care with Pixformance

Train­ing at the Pix­for­mance sta­tions is also part of the EU research project at 5 loca­tions (see turquoise high­light­ed in the graph­ic). Work is done with ques­tion­naires and fol­low-ups before and after the respec­tive inter­ven­tions. The patients includ­ed in the project are aged 4 to 21 years. Whether, when and how often they will train at the Pix­for­mance sta­tions depends on the indi­vid­ual course of their dis­ease and therapy.

“At the begin­ning of chemother­a­py, chil­dren may some­times not be able to leave their room. When they are fit enough to go to the gym, it is up to the exer­cise spe­cial­ists to decide how the train­ing will be car­ried out. They cre­ate the exer­cise plans for the young patients. It is impor­tant that they are sup­port­ed accord­ing to their indi­vid­ual health con­di­tions. And pre­cise­ly also to work on their weak points with­out risk of injury” , Dr. Neu tells us in our con­ver­sa­tion. Accord­ing­ly, train­ing at the Pix­for­mance sta­tions is offered to every patient, pro­vid­ed that the exer­cis­es of the move­ment spe­cial­ist appear to make sense for the spe­cif­ic case.
Stark gegen Kinderkrebs: Digitales Training an der Pixformance Station für krebskranke Kinder

Strong togeth­er against child­hood can­cer: Spe­cial new exer­cis­es for the spe­cial patients 

As part of the FOR­TEe project, we worked with a team of pedi­a­tri­cians, pedi­atric oncol­o­gists, sports sci­en­tists, and phys­io­ther­a­pists at the Oxford and Mainz sites to devel­op some new exer­cis­es. Thus, in addi­tion to the 270+ exer­cis­es from the Pix­for­mance exer­cise cat­a­log, addi­tion­al train­ing sequences are avail­able for the chil­dren. These have been spe­cial­ly devel­oped for the very spe­cial patient group, chil­dren with can­cer, so they are ide­al­ly suit­ed to their needs. The vir­tu­al train­er has also been replaced by a play­ful avatar for these exercises.

In some of the clin­ics, the Pix­for­mance sta­tion has been cov­ered up in the sports room for some time, already arous­ing a cer­tain curios­i­ty among the young patients. In spring 2022, the indi­vid­ual sites will start the inter­ven­tion phase. We are very proud to be part of this impor­tant project and are excit­ed about the devel­op­ment. Of course, we will con­stant­ly update this page with the lat­est project news and progress.

This project has received fund­ing from the Euro­pean Union’s Hori­zon 2020 research and inno­va­tion pro­gramme under grant agree­ment No. 945153. This web­site reflects only the view of the authors, and the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion is not respon­si­ble for any use that may be made of the infor­ma­tion it contains.

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