With all the breathing issues associated with COPD, the last thing a person with the disease may feel like doing is exercising and risking becoming even more breathless. However, exercise is important for all of us, including individuals with COPD, to preserve the best possible health. In fact, there are several recent studies that report the confirmed pulmonary gains of exercising with COPD, and that outline the negative consequences for inactivity – including increased hospitalizations and early death.
Providing the top dementia care New Hampton, NH has to offer, Live Free Home Health Care proposes the following types of COPD exercises, as recommended by the American Lung Association (after first receiving consent from the doctor):
- Stretches. Stretching is in many instances overlooked when creating an exercise plan, but it’s very important. Research demonstrates that stretching exercises completed in connection with cardio exercise resulted in reduced episodes of shortness of breath. Stretch all of the major muscles with these exercises:
- Bend from one side to the other; hold and then switch sides
- Lift your ankle up behind you; hold and then switch sides
- Gently turn the head to one side and then the other
- While in a seated position on the floor with legs outstretched, reach forward as far as you comfortably are able
- Cardio exercises. The intent with cardio exercises is to raise the heart rate, which strengthens the lungs and enhances their functionality. When commencing an exercise program from an inactive lifestyle, or if experiencing more advanced effects of COPD, it’s crucial to keep the intensity level lower and then, if possible, slowly work your way up. Walking, riding a bicycle and swimming are all ideal COPD exercises to incorporate. For those on oxygen therapy, make sure to check with the physician on the possible need to increase flow rate during cardio exercises.
- Strength training. Strength training assists in building and strengthening muscles, including those that are crucial to breathing. Again, start slowly after a period of inactivity and gradually increase efforts over time. For example, in the place of lifting weights at first, hold cans of soup or bottles of water and lift them slowly while bending the elbows. When this feels comfortable, transition to weights or resistance bands to increase the intensity of the workout. Simple squats and lunges are also very helpful for improving muscle strength.
Live Free Home Health Care, the top rated providers of the dementia care New Hampton, NH seniors trust, can help with COPD exercises and a wide array of services to improve quality of life for those with COPD, such as:
- Exercising with seniors to provide motivation and encouragement to follow an exercise program
- Offering transportation and accompaniment to the local senior center or gym for enhanced exercise opportunities outside of the home
- Take care of light household chores, meal preparation, and other tasks, freeing seniors up to focus on improving their health
- And much more!
To arrange for a free in-home evaluation to learn more about our home care services for seniors, call us at 603-217-0149. We’ll formulate a customized plan of care and then track that plan continually to guarantee the perfect level of care is always provided – today, and as care needs change in the future. Partner with Live Free Home Health Care and discover a higher quality of life and wellbeing for your senior loved one!