Exercise key to COPD management: Massey’s story
A smoker for almost 30 years, Matua Massey Te Ruki’s Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) diagnosis came in 2007 almost 10 years after he had quit. He used the inhalers prescribed to him and learned to recognise the times of year and situations he would feel short of breath. Smokers and ex-smokers are particularly prone to breathing conditions that fall under the COPD umbrella.
In 2012 he was introduced to local charity Breathe Hawke’s Bay (BHB) and discovered they offered an exercise subsidy to members to encourage physical activity as part of their condition management. He’s received the exercise subsidy and been a member ever since. As well as recommending BHB’s services and making regular donations; he also supports the organisation in his role as BHB kaumātua.
Regular respiratory reviews keep Massey working out six times a week, most weeks. He says missing sessions affects his condition ‘big time’. “I really miss it after 2-3 days if I’m away,” he explains. He credits his workouts for the control he has of his COPD. “I find my arthritis restricts my exercising more than my COPD. The exercise really helps to keep my condition under good control,” he says.
BHB have exercise subsidies available across a range of activities, for both adults and children. Criteria apply. Contact BHB on 0800 ASTHMA (278 462) for more information.
*This article was prepared for World COPD Day, 2018