Don’t let asthma slow you down. Just take these precautions before you exercise.

Many people who exercise, even Olympic athletes, have asthma. In most cases, asthma won’t stop you from working out or doing the activities you enjoy doing. In fact, it’s important for you to be physically active to keep your heart and lungs strong and your weight under control.

Ways to Control Your Asthma

If you’re one of the more than 25 million Americans with asthma, you’ll need to make sure your asthma is well-controlled. Take some precautions when exercising to help prevent a flare-up of symptoms, including:

  • Develop an action plan.  Talk with your doctor about how to handle your asthma when you exercise. Discuss what to do before you exercise, what to avoid, what symptoms to look for and how to address them when they occur.
  • Pick activities carefully. You may be able to tolerate some physical activities without a problem while others are more likely to trigger an asthma attack. Activities such as yoga, tai chi, walking and swimming are generally well-tolerated by people with asthma.
  • Avoid asthma triggers. If your asthma is worse when pollen or air pollution levels are high, don’t exercise outside during these times. If the cold triggers breathing issues, stay indoors when temps are too low or cover your mouth and nose with a scarf to trap in the warm, moist air you breathe.
  • Be prepared. If you need a rescue inhaler, make sure you have it with you whenever you work out. If you require daily medication, don’t skip taking it.
  • Don’t overdo it. Warm up and cool down so your body has a chance to adapt to changes in activity and breathing. Don’t overexert yourself and avoid working out when you’re sick.

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Call (716) 706-2112

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Date Last Reviewed: March 15, 2017

Editorial Review: Andrea Cohen, Editorial Director, Baldwin Publishing, Inc. Contact Editor

Medical Review: Perry Pitkow, MD

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