Site icon Women Fitness

Physical Activity Benefits For COPD Patients

With increasing numbers of people being diagnosed with COPD, it is important to provide different options for exercise that can be tailored to suit each individual.

In a study published on April 9, 2014 (in the Annals of the American Thoracic Society), the researchers analyzed the health records of more than 6,000 California patients, aged 40 and older. All were hospitalized with COPD during 2011 and 2012. The patients provided information about their physical activity levels.

Compared to inactive patients, those who exercised 150 minutes a week (the equivalent of a half-hour, five days a week) or more were 34 percent less likely to be readmitted to the hospital within 30 days. Those who exercised less than 150 minutes a week still had a 33 percent lower risk compared to those who didn’t exercise at all, the study found. COPD describes a group of progressive respiratory conditions that include emphysema (disease of the lungs that can make breathing difficult.) and chronic bronchitis.

In another study, Scientists found that chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) patients without regular walking regimens had about twice the rate of hospitalizations triggered by the condition compared to those who maintained the highest levels of physical activity. This was defined as walking between roughly two and four miles each day.

Another study conducted back in 2012 showed that the gentle movements of Sun-style tai chi (SSTC) can improve the lives and boost the exercise endurance of people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Compared to some other styles of tai chi, SSTC involves less difficult movements, such as less deep-knee bending and single-leg standing, which may make it more suitable for older people.

These studies clearly indicate the need for a Pulmonary rehabilitation program of exercises for COPD patients to help them build their physical fitness.

Pulmonary Rehab Guidelines for COPD

Pulmonary health experts have issued guidelines for pulmonary rehabilitation programs to follow. These guidelines are based on the best available studies of pulmonary rehab and its benefits for people with COPD.

Some of the recommendations in the most well-recognized pulmonary rehab guidelines are:

There is no evidence to show one exercise program is better than another. Although “more is better” when it comes to pulmonary rehab exercises, some people may be better able to maintain a lower-intensity exercise program for the long term. Continued exercise is important, even after completing rehab.

Breathing during activity

Always breathe slowly to save your breath. Inhale through your nose, keeping your mouth closed. This warms and moisturizes the air you breathe and at the same time filters it. Exhale through pursed lips.

Walking guidelines
Stair climbing

Exercise cannot reverse lung disease but it can reverse de-conditioning and improve your quality of life.

Exit mobile version