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CrossFitting With Asthma by Chance Hughs - CrossFit Journal

CrossFitting With Asthma

By Chance Hughs

In Medical/Injuries, Videos

November 02, 2011

Video Article

Chance Hughs, co-owner of Predation CrossFit has an athlete named Tim who has battled asthma his entire life. However, since starting CrossFit, Tim has gotten his asthma more under control.

Hughs says that when Tim first came in, he struggled to breathe within five minutes of working out. Now his coach sees a marked difference.

“He breathes hard, but he’s filling his lungs up, so I think it’s doing really well for him, personally,” Hughs says.

His partner and fellow CrossFitter, Courtney, is also impressed.

“He’s discovered that the more exercise he’s doing, the better his endurance and cardio and aerobic stuff’s getting. His asthma is getting better too,” she says.

Catching his breath after working out, Tim is all smiles.

“It just takes longer. I breathe until I feel like I got a little bit back, and then I just keep going,” he says.

5min 9sec

Additional reading: CrossFit Kids: Forging Future Achievers by Cyndi Rodi, published Aug. 1, 2008.

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4 Comments on “CrossFitting With Asthma”


wrote …

Great stuff.
I have found this to be true, without exception, with our high school students here at Blue Flame CrossFit. They come in puffin away and dependant on their inhalers. By the end of the first 9 weeks they are always off of them.


wrote …

As a fellow asthma sufferer (47 y/o; had it all my life) it can be frustrating sometimes that exercise, which can induce an attack, is exactly what you have to do to help get the asthma under control in the long run. But it works. Keep it up, Tim, I know exactly what you're going through (was that a Ventolin inhaler I saw in the video -- that's good stuff; much better than the generic inhalers they always try to stick you with these days!).


wrote …

Good article/ video... I am myself an asthmatic and have been suffering from the exersise induced type ( not to be confused with the allergic type)! I am 27 and have had issues since the age of 4... But ever since i can remeber i have been doing sports... Yes, exercise, cardio or conditioning....are all very helpfull and help the lung " muscle" to develop properly so you can minimze and control asthma attacks!
BUT... The ultimate goal, is to lose the "puffer" and ultimatley completing WODs without having the fear of not making, due to an asthma attack arising!
In the last 5 years I have been doing serious functional training and have been doing WODs without even worrieng about not having an inhalernwith me or an asthma attack...because having these issues in the back of your mind...limits you to your actual full potential!
So, it is important for start a therapy and actually seeing the doctor and him prescribing the therapie...or else you will always limit yourself and be a slave of an inhaler! Learn to listen to your body/breathing and Keep cool when it gets ruff...;) cheers


wrote …

I was diagnosed with exercise induced asthma when I was 12ish. I was very active, and constantly involved in athletics. Cold air mixed with exercise was my asthma trigger. I would have minor reactions at other times, but nothing I couldn't work through. I am now 38 and have been a hard core crossfitter for over three years. I was an endurance athlete prior to Crossfit. My point: Crossit has improved my lung function, but has not eliminated my asthma. My lungs still get mad at cold air, and quick changes in breathing patters(slow to fast). I use my puffer for about 20% of WODs.

If Crossfit cured your asthma, you probably didn't have asthma to begin with. I suspect that doctors have prescribed millions of puffers to kids without asthma. Kids who can't understand why they can't breath during exercise when they spend hours a day training at Modern Warfare and Grand Theft Auto!

I would suggest that you not use asthma as an exuse not to crossfit. Bring your puffer, and use it as needed. I would also not be disappointed if your asthma doesn't disappear because you crossfit. There are plenty of other benifits to offset your disappointment!

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