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Cystic Fibrosis Trust launches exercise programme

Cystic Fibrosis Trust launches exercise programme

In aid to help everyone with cystic fibrosis (CF) take control of their physical health, the Cystic Fibrosis Trust have committed to funding a new programme called Activity Unlimited.

The programme aims to provide real advice and guidance for people with the condition and will help to improve lives focusing on a range of online exercises, exploring how physical activity can help young people living with CF keep their lungs healthy for longer.

Cystic Fibrosis is a debilitating genetic condition that affects the lungs and digestive system which become clogged with thick, sticky mucus. Whilst the benefits of exercise are widely recognised by cystic fibrosis clinicians, the best ways of promotion and implementation of physical exercise are unknown.

Rebekah Mills-Bennett, a Specialist CF Physiotherapist and Steve Howard, a personal trainer have put together video tutorials of exercise programmes including push up and burpees.

“When I was 19 I had my first serious hospital admission and my lung function dropped from 100% to 60% over a short time. That was the moment I decided to make my health a priority and I later qualified as a personal trainer. Now I train almost every day and lift weights six times a week – I’ve never felt healthier! I take control of my health because if I don’t then my CF will take control of me, if I just sat still my health would plummet very quickly.”

The range of videos demonstrates safe, beneficial exercises that can help to improve overall health and fitness which can be done from the comfort of your home. The Activity Unlimited programme aims to reduce the barriers to activity and encourage as many people living with the condition to take part in activities that can have positive impacts on their health.

“Being physically active has important clinical benefits for cystic fibrosis, including improved lung function, aerobic fitness and lung clearance. It also brings psychological and social benefits such as improved self-confidence, socialisation and self-esteem. Despite this knowledge there is limited evidence in this area and as such, we’re delighted to be investing in these research projects to explore the benefits of activity further and we look forward to sharing the results. We are very grateful to all of our supporters, without whom this and other vital research programmes would not be possible.” Dr. Keith Brownlee, Director of Impact at the Cystic Fibrosis Trust.