Exercises for COPD
If you suffer from COPD you may be concerned that physical activity will worsen your symptoms. While this is possible, a customized exercise plan from a therapist could help improve the function of your lungs and your entire body.
Regular exercise will help your body use oxygen better, and therefore improve your breathing over time. Exercise will also keep your heart and lungs strong, give you more energy for your day to day activities, help you sleep better, strengthen your muscles , joints and bones, maintain a healthy body weight and improve your emotional wellbeing.
Remember to have realistic goals and expectations. Start slow and gradually increase the intensity, frequency and duration of the fitness sessions, and keep track of your results.
Warm up and cool down periods are important – don’t try to skip them. Stop exercising and see a doctor if you experience dizziness, abnormal heart beats, pain, severe shortness of breath or chest discomfort.
These type of exercise may be beneficial for your condition. Consult a qualified therapist to learn how much exercise should incorporate in your routine.
1. Aerobic Exercise
Aerobic exercises have multiple benefits – they work your heart and lungs, and improve your flexibility, endurance and posture. They will help your body will use oxygen better and thus improve your breathing.
Try to walk (outdoors or on a treadmill) or use a stationary bike at home for 20-30 minutes most days of the week. As your fitness levels improve, you may want to try jogging, jumping rope, skiing or skating.
ResourcesWebMD (10 Smart Exercises for People with COPD)COPD Foundation (Breathing Techniques)Cleveland Clinic (COPD Exercise and Activity Guidelines)PROactive COPD (Strengthening Exercises)
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