Skip to content

Paed Asthma – Improving strength

Evidence Summary
Muscular strength has been measured in two studies looking at concentric and isometric strength in both open and closed chain exercises as well as respiratory muscle strength. Significant improvement in strength was demonstrated within physical activity intervention-based groups, however no direct correlation between improving strength and associated positive asthma outcome measures was described.

Quality of Evidence
B – moderate quality
Strength of Recommendation
Strength of recommendation: 2B. Weak recommendation

Physical activity has been shown to improve general muscular strength and respiratory muscle strength in asthmatic children with no adverse effects being demonstrated. It is unknown whether improved strength alone is associated with improved asthma outcomes however severely asthmatic children have been shown to have reduced strength. Strength training alone cannot be recommended to this group, and should be included as part of a varied exercise program.

Joschtel, B., S. R. Gomersall, S. Tweedy, H. Petsky, A. B. Chang and S. G. Trost (2018). “Effects of exercise training on physical and psychosocial health in children with chronic respiratory disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis.” BMJ Open Sport Exerc Med 4(1): e000409.
Latorre-Roman, P. A., A. V. Navarro-Martinez and F. Garcia-Pinillos (2014). “The effectiveness of an indoor intermittent training program for improving lung function, physical capacity, body composition and quality of life in children with asthma.” J Asthma 51(5): 544-551.
Villa, F., A. P. Castro, A. C. Pastorino, J. M. Santarem, M. A. Martins, C. M. Jacob and C. R. Carvalho (2011). “Aerobic capacity and skeletal muscle function in children with asthma.” Arch Dis Child 96(6): 554-559.