Pulmonary rehabilitation is a programme of exercise and education for people with respiratory conditions such as COPD and pulmonary fibrosis.
The programme includes 12 supervised sessions run over 6 weeks by qualified health professionals. It is important that you attend all 12 sessions in order to gain the most benefit from the course.
Why is exercise important?
When you suffer with a breathing problem becoming short of
breath can be very frightening and uncomfortable and so you may
naturally try to avoid activities which make you breathless. Over
time this can result in you reducing the amount of activity that
you do. This can lead to your muscles becoming weak, to you
becoming increasingly unfit and ultimately more breathless.
This can then make it more difficult for you to do the
activities you used to do and so may reduce your quality of
Pulmonary rehabilitation can help break this vicious cycle of
reduced activity and increased breathlessness.
How will pulmonary rehabilitation help me?
Pulmonary rehabilitation can help by:
- reducing your breathlessness,
- increasing the muscle strength in your arms and legs,
- increasing your stamina and endurance,
- giving you a better understanding of your condition,
- increasing your confidence in your own abilities to control
your symptoms, such as breathlessness,
- increasing independence in your everyday life,
- improving your health-related quality of
The Pulmonary Rehabilitation Programme
The programme is run by qualified health professionals from
Southend Hospital who specialise in lung conditions and is
conducted over 6 weeks with two sessions per week (12 sessions in
Each of the 12 sessions are 2 hrs long. The 1st hour
is an exercise session tailored to your own abilities followed by
an education session with a tea break in-between.
The classes are run in small groups of approx. 15 people who all
have a long-term lung condition.
Once you have been referred for Pulmonary Rehabilitation you
will be contacted by a member of the team within a few weeks. They
will ask you a few questions about your general health, the
medication you are taking and how you are managing with your lung
condition. They will explain the programme in more detail and
arrange for you to attend for an initial assessment.
Where is the programme run?
The Pulmonary Rehabilitation Programme is run at 4 locations in
the area so you can choose the course that suits you best. Each
course is run in exactly the same format.
Gym 1, Physiotherapy Department, Southend Hospital, SS0 0RY
Day/Time: Tuesday and
Thursday at 11am - 1pm
Hockley Gym, Eldon Way Industrial Estate, Eldon Way, Hockley, SS5
Days/Times: Wednesday at 2.30pm -
4.30pm and Friday at 10.30am -
Hall 3, The Paddocks, Long Road, Canvey Island, SS8 0JA
Tuesday and Thursday at 2.15pm - 4.15pm
St Luke's Church Hall, St Lukes Road, Southend SS2 4AB
Days/Times: Wednesday at 11am -
1pm and Friday at 2pm - 4pm
Before attending the course, you will be invited to attend
one of the above locations of your choice for an assessment. This
will include a short walking test which will help us to establish
the correct level of exercise to start you at. After this
assessment you will then be given a date to start the course.
You will be expected to participate in a home exercise programme
alongside the pulmonary rehabilitation programme. This will be
discussed with you.
It is important that you attend all 12 sessions in order to gain
the most benefit from the course. If you miss a session this can be
added onto the end of the 6 weeks so you don't miss out.
Alternative options are available if you feel that it may be
difficult to attend twice a week for 6 weeks at this time - please
discuss this with a member of the Pulmonary Rehab team.
What happens once I have finished the course?
You will be encouraged to continue with exercise to maintain and
improve your general fitness. An individualised plan will be
developed with you at the end of the course.
There are several ways in which this can be achieved,
- A home exercise programme;
- attending a local gym;
- attending an exercise group.
We will discuss these options with you while you are
attending the programme.
We also encourage people to join the local Breathe-Easy support
group, held monthly, run by others with lung disease and supported
by the British Lung Foundation.
How can I be referred?
You can be referred for Pulmonary Rehabilitation by:
- Your GP or Practice Nurse
- Your Community nursing team
- Your hospital specialist doctor/Nurse
- Your nurse or doctor during an admission to hospital
Please ask any of the above professionals that you see for a
referral to Pulmonary Rehabilitation.
A referral form can be found here: /media/60681/pulmonary_rehab_referral.docx
Pulmonary Rehabilitation Team contact details
For more information please don't hesitate to contact us.
In Person: Pop
into one of the above sites at the times stated to chat with a
member of the team
British Lung Foundation: https://www.blf.org.uk/support-for-you/keep-active/pulmonary-rehabilitation