Pulmonary rehabilitation classes are run by the NHS across the country, and could be useful if you are worried or unsure about exercising with PH.

Carol Keen, clinical specialist physiotherapist at the Sheffield Pulmonary Vascular Disease Unit, explains how rehab classes work and why they could help you.

“Free pulmonary rehabilitation classes are run by NHS physiotherapists and nurses across the country. Programmes normally run for six to eight weeks and are a great way to get a feel of what it’s like to some exercise.

On average patients will attend two sessions per week which last for up to two hours. In the first hour you’ll do a gentle warm-up, and then you’ll be given an exercise programme to follow. After that there’ll be a cool-down and an education session at the end.

The programme you’re given will be tailored to how fit you are and what your targets are. It will push you a little bit, but it won’t work you too hard, and the physios will monitor you to make sure you’re exercising at the right level.

The education sessions will cover relaxation, how to manage your breathing, healthy eating and activity programmes in your local area which you might want to get involved in after you’ve completed your pulmonary rehabilitation.

Pulmonary rehabilitation is a group activity which means you can talk to people experiencing similar symptoms to you and we find that the social aspect of it appeals to people.

You need a referral to join a class. The best way to arrange that is to go to your GP and explain that you want to get a bit more active and you’ve heard that pulmonary rehabilitation might be a good thing for you. Your GP can then put a referral in for you.”

To find out more about pulmonary rehabilitation, visit NHS UK.