HAVING ASTHMA DOESN’T MEAN YOU NEED TO GIVE UP EXERCISE
You might be thinking that exercise is the last thing you should do because of your asthma – but the truth is, you can still be active and regularly exercise even with asthma. In fact, exercise can be beneficial for asthma.1,2
Ways exercise can benefit your asthma:
Being physically active strengthens your heart and lungs – the fitter you become, the less likely you are to feel breathless during exercise.
Improved symptom control1,4
Exercising can help improve asthma control compared with not exercising at all.
Boost immune system5,6
Asthma symptoms may worsen with viral infections like colds and the flu, but regular moderate activity increases your body’s ability to detect and fight off viruses.
Obesity is associated with inflammation and increased asthma severity, so it’s important to work out regularly to help maintain a healthy weight for your asthma.
Exercise reduces the levels of stress hormones and stimulates the production of endorphins, which are brain chemicals that lift your mood.
WHICH EXERCISES ARE ASTHMA FRIENDLY?
Check with your doctor before taking up any new sports and carry your asthma medication when you exercise.6
Some activities are better suited for people with asthma:9
Short-distance track and field
Sports that have lots of ongoing activity such as soccer, basketball, field hockey and long-distance running, or cold-weather activities such as cross-country skiing and ice hockey are more likely to worsen asthma symptoms.9
- Jaakkola JJK, et al. Sci Rep. 2019;9(1):12088.
- Dogra S, et al. Eur Respir J. 2011;37(2):318–323.
- American Lung Association. Exercise and lung health, 2022. Available at: https://www.lung.org/lung-health-diseases/wellness/exercise-and-lung-health. Accessed December 2022.
- Bacon SL, et al. BMJ Open Respir Res. 2015;2(1):e000083.
- Nieman DC. J Sport Health Sci. 2020;9(4):293–301.
- GINA. Global strategy for asthma management and prevention, 2022. Available at: https://ginasthma.org/gina-reports/. Accessed December 2022.
- Kim SH, et al. Allergy Asthma Immunol Res. 2014;6(3):189–195.
- Harvard Health Publishing. Exercising to relax, 2020. Available at: https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/exercising-to-relax. Accessed December 2022.
- AAAAI. Asthma and exercise, 2020. Available at: https://www.aaaai.org/tools-for-the-public/conditions-library/asthma/asthma-and-exercise. Accessed December 2022.
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NP-SG-ASU-WCNT-230004. May 2023.