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What Exercises Are Good For Asthmatics?

What Exercises Are Good For Asthmatics?

Some people feel that the words “exercise” and “asthma” don’t come together well; after all, many asthmatics develop symptoms during or shortly after physical activity. But experts adamantly remind us that regular exercise is crucial to achieve and maintain optimum health. How is exercise beneficial for people with asthma? What exercises are good for asthmatics? Find out here.

How is exercise beneficial for people with asthma?

Before we list down the good exercises for asthmatics, let’s first discuss why doing physical activity is important.

According to the American Lung Association, exercising daily helps improve lung capacity, the maximum amount of oxygen the body could use. Regular physical activity also promotes good circulation in the lungs. Good blood flow in the lungs is essential because it also promotes circulation in the heart, the organ that pumps oxygen-rich blood throughout the body.

Of course, let’s not forget that regular exercise contributes to bone and muscle strength, reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases, promotes a healthy weight, and improves mental health.

What exercises are good for asthmatics?

Generally, people with asthma can participate in all types of exercises. However, you might need to take your medicine before you engage in your chosen physical activity.

Still, some exercises are “better” than others because they are less likely to trigger asthma symptoms. Below are some of the good exercises for asthmatics:

Walking

Some say that walking is the best exercise for asthmatics. In fact, in one study, a team of researchers found that participants who walked thrice a week for 12 weeks improved both fitness levels and asthma control. Moreover, the exercises didn’t provoke an attack.

The participants in the study did a 30-minute walk with a 5-minute warm-up and 5-minute cool-down sessions.

Swimming

Working out in the water is great for asthmatics for several reasons.

For one, it’s gentle. Secondly, pools have little to no pollen, which often serves as a trigger. And finally, when you swim, you are surrounded by warm, moist air that is “easier” to breathe in and reduces the possibility of the symptoms occurring.

However, please be careful with chlorinated water, since asthmatics often find that it triggers asthma symptoms.

Yoga

We cannot talk about the good exercises for asthmatics without discussing yoga.

Like swimming, people with asthma can go as gentle as they want to be when doing yoga. Experts say yoga is great for asthma because it encourages breathing control.

One report also discovered that yoga decreased the occurrences of day and night attacks, and even reduced the use of asthma drugs.

Hiking

You might not think of hiking as a good exercise for asthmatics, but experts say it could be one. Hiking often involves clean, fresh air, a relaxing vibe, and leisure pacing.

Of course, there are some precautions to keep in mind. First, make sure that your hike is for leisure only. Steer clear from hikes are meant for people who want to “test their limits.” Next, choose your terrain. Avoid steep trails; instead, choose ones with gentle slopes.

And finally, whenever possible, hike with someone who knows about your condition or explain your situation to the hike leader beforehand. Don’t forget to bring your medication, too.

Final reminders

Besides walking, swimming, yoga, and hiking, remember that you can also engage in some sports, like volleyball, tennis, and badminton. Lifting weights is also an option as well as little things such as climbing the stairs instead of using the elevator.

Avoid sports or activities that are continuous, such as basketball and long-distance running, as they can stress the lungs.

Finally, stop exercising if you encounter the signs and symptoms of asthma attacks. Talk to your doctor, too, so you can come up with an appropriate physical activity plan that wouldn’t trigger your asthma symptoms.

Learn more about Asthma here.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

Asthma
https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/asthma/symptoms-causes/syc-20369653#:~:text=Asthma
Accessed June 14, 2021

Benefits of Exercise
https://medlineplus.gov/benefitsofexercise.html
Accessed June 14, 2021

Benefits of Exercise When You Have Asthma
https://www.lung.org/lung-health-diseases/lung-disease-lookup/asthma/living-with-asthma/managing-asthma/asthma-and-exercise
Accessed June 14, 2021

Feasibility of exercising adults with asthma: a randomized pilot study
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3511803/
Accessed June 14, 2021

Clinical Effects of Yoga on Asthmatic Patients: A Preliminary Clinical Trial
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3275836/
Accessed June 14, 2021

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Written by Lorraine Bunag, R.N. Updated Jun 14
Fact Checked by Hello Doctor Medical Panel
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