Asthma is burdensome to have. Whenever it strikes, it constricts the airways, giving the affected person a lot of difficulty in breathing. Because of this, people who have the disease hardly engage in physical activities, or even totally not at all.
However, those with asthma need not be stereotyped as sedentary people who always carry medicine for asthma or cough and cold. Just like people without the condition, they can have physical activities, or even engage in sports. Here are a few examples of those that are friendly to asthmatic people.
This is one of the most popular sports for asthmatic people. This is because swimming improves lung capacity, allowing the lungs to be filled with more air. And because of the water, the air will be moist, making it more conducive for asthmatic people to breathe in. Because of these two benefits, physicians have done studies, which showed that those with asthma who took up the sport have had less attacks and therefore less need for medical intervention.
Because of its laid-back nature and its stress-relieving effect, cycling is easily one of the most popular choices for those with asthma. And because it increases stamina, those whose asthma that is induced by physical activities will be able to cope better during strenuous situations. Also, it improves strength and muscle tone, especially that of the lower body. Lastly, it is a good way to travel short distances.
Track and Field
Some people may think that this sport just involves running and jumping on obstacles, but it’s actually more than that. The benefits include the increase of good cholesterol and the decrease of bad ones, lowering of blood pressure, increase in bone density, and improvement of heart functions and stamina. And because it is not as strenuous and competitive as contact sports like basketball and soccer, asthmatic people will feel less pressured.
This sport is a great way to have a considerable amount of exercise without having the need to be in constant exertion of effort, making this safe for those whose asthma is triggered by continuous physical activity. Baseball also improves hand-eye coordination, muscle tone, and joint flexibility, especially those of the upper body. And aside from that, it is also known to improve teamwork and interpersonal communication.
A lot of factors that can trigger asthma can be found outdoors – pollen, dust, smoke, just to name a few. Thus, martial arts can be a great form of physical activity, as it is usually practiced indoors. The short but meaningful movements promote good shape and muscle tone. And in sparring matches, there is much emphasis on fast reflexes and critical thinking. Also, it encourages discipline and gives those who practice it self-defense measures that can prove invaluable during certain situations.
Although there is no denying that those with asthma can only do limited physical activities, it should not be a total hindrance to sports. After all, sports are not only enjoyable, but also healthy, stimulating, and rewarding.