Today, Longevity Exercise Physiology Drummoyne, EdgecliffMarrickvilleBella VistaRandwick, PymbleBalmain, Neutral Bay, Coburg – Melbourne, and Barrie, Ontario – Canada discuss how exercise can help to manage Asthma.

 

What is Asthma?

Asthma is a type of obstructive pulmonary disease.

It is a lung disorder characterised by a narrowing of the airways, which are the tubes that carry air into the lungs. The airways become inflamed and constricted, causing shortness of breath, wheezing, chest tightness and episodic coughing.

Asthma statistics

In Australia,

  • 421 deaths in Australia related to Asthma in 2019
  • 7 million (1 in 9/ 11%) Australians have Asthma 2017-2018
  • Prevalence of Asthma increased from 9.9% in 2007-08 to 11.2% in 2017-18.
  • Females had higher rates of Asthma than males in 2017-18 (12.3% compared with 10.2%)

 

“It is estimated that 11% of Australians have Asthma, including 1 in 7 primary school children and 1 in 9 adults and is one of the most common chronic conditions in Australia.”

(Asthma Australia, 2021)

There are 3 components to Asthma:

  1. Airway inflammation – primary contributing factor
  2. Intermittent airflow obstruction
  3. Bronchial hyperresponsiveness – chronic coughing

 

What are the causes of Asthma?

Environmental factors: Allergens, indoor factors (mites, mould), outdoor factors (pollens, fungi), infections (viral), smoking (active and passive), diet – foods, medications (aspirin, nonsteroidal agents).

Individual factors: Genetics, being overweight, gender.

 

“Asthma can be reversible.”

 

Studies have shown that making healthy lifestyle changes and updating your medication to address symptoms can help to reverse Asthma. Longevity Exercise Physiologists are professionals in creating healthy lifestyle and behaviour changes for all individuals to help them manage their asthma.

The benefits of exercise

Current research shows that exercise can:

  • Have the potential to improve Asthma control and lung function in adults completing aerobic training (Hansen et al., 2020)
  • Improve Asthma symptoms, quality of life, exercise capacity, bronchial hyperresponsiveness, exercise-induced bronchoconstriction and forced expiratory volume (Eichenberger et al., 2013)
  • Improve quality of life in Asthmatics (Dogra et al., 2011)
  • Significantly improves cardiovascular fitness (Joschetl et al., 2018)

 

It is recommended that people with Asthma engage in aerobic training of low to high intensity 3 – 5 times per week and resistance (strength) training 2 or more times weekly (Exercise is Medicine, 2014).

 

Considerations for exercise prescription

To provide the best exercise treatment for asthma, we will provide:

  • A variety of different exercises to help address the vast range of symptoms, severity and limitations to airflow
  • Different types and and intensities to reflect training status, interests, and goals
  • Minimising exposure to cold air, low humidity and air pollutants

 

If you have any questions regarding safe and effective exercise for Asthma, seek professional help through a Longevity Exercise Physiologist.

Call Longevity Exercise Physiology Drummoyne, EdgecliffMarrickvilleBella VistaRandwick, PymbleBalmain, Neutral Bay, Coburg – Melbourne. and Barrie, Ontario – Canada on 1300 964 002 to enquire today!

 

Written by Matt Skelly

 

References

Dogra, S., Kuk, J. L., Baker, J., Jamnik, V. (2011). Exercise is associated with improved asthma control in adults. European Respiratory, 37(2), 318-323. DOI: 10.1183/09031936.00182209.

Eichenberger, P. A., Diener, S. N., Kofmehl, R. et al. (2013). Effects of Exercise Training on Airway Hyperreactivity in Asthma: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Sports Med, 43, 1157–1170. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40279-013-0077-2.

Fanelli, A., Cabral, A. L., Neder, J. A., Martins, M. A., Carvalho, C. R. (2007). Exercise training on disease control and quality of life in asthmatic children. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 39(9), 1474-1480. DOI: 10.1249/mss.0b013e3180d099ad.

Hansen, E. S. H., Pitzner-Fabricius, A.,Toennesen, L. L., Rasmusen, H. K., Hostrup, M., Hellsten, Y., Backer, V., Henriksen, M. (2020). Effect of aerobic exercise training on asthma in adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis. European Respiratory Journal, 56(1), 2000146, DOI: 10.1183/13993003.00146-2020.

Joschtel, B., Gomersall, S. R., Tweedy, S, et al. (2018). Effects of exercise training on physical and psychosocial health in children with chronic respiratory disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis. BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine, 4, 000409. DOI: 10.1136/bmjsem-2018-000409.