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Your Child's Asthma: Encouraging Exercise

Your child needs exercise to be healthy and fit. So don’t let fear of an asthma flare-up keep your child from being active. Many professional and Olympic athletes have asthma. They're able to perform because their asthma is under control. The same is true for your child. Always refer to your child's Asthma Action Plan before they do any exercise.

Man talking to boy with soccer ball.
Kids with asthma need to exercise every day to stay healthy and fit.

What kind of exercise?

Kids with asthma can play baseball, basketball, soccer, or football. They can swim, run cross-country, or do gymnastics. In fact, a child with asthma can take part in any sport.

Making exercise safer

Tips for safer exercise include the following:

  • Your child should always have their Asthma Action Plan on hand.

  • If your child takes quick-relief medicine before exercise, make sure they always carry it and know when and how to take it.

  • Teach your child to warm up for 5 to 10 minutes before exercise. This reduces the chance of a flare-up. And make sure your child always cools down for 3 to 5 minutes after exercise.

  • Talk with your child’s physical education or gym teacher or coach. Explain when and how your child should take asthma medicines. Also explain the importance of warming up. This person should know the symptoms of an asthma flare-up and what to do about it.

  • Your child may need to not exercise outside on certain days. Watch for high levels of air pollution, dry air and wind, very cold air, or high levels of pollen.

Online Medical Reviewer: Allen J Blaivas DO
Online Medical Reviewer: Amy Finke RN BSN
Online Medical Reviewer: Daphne Pierce-Smith RN MSN
Date Last Reviewed: 11/1/2021
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