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Jul 8

Breathing improvements for retired ambulance driver thanks to eight-week exercise programme – Express & Star

Patrick Balfour has taken part in an eight-week exercise programme run by The Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust (RWT) at The Bilston Peoples Centre.

The programme has been designed to help those suffering from Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).

Patrick, from Bilston, has regular check-ups with the nurse including breathing tests and he was told in January he may benefit from joining the group.

The 75-year-old said: "It has been a mixture of one to one and group sessions. Some of the exercises included walking on the spot, stepping from side to side, weights and leg lifts.

"They help you to manage your breathing and I have noticed a big difference as I used to need to use an inhaler, even when walking up the stairs, but now I dont and I am not as breathless.

"It has really made a change and, not only is it having a benefit on my physical health, but mentally too as I really enjoy the sessions and the staff have been amazing I would recommend it to anyone."

COPD is the name for a group of lung conditions that cause breathing difficulties which tend to get gradually worse over time and can limit normal activities.

James Fryer, exercise physiologist from the pulmonary rehabilitation (PR) team at RWT, who has been monitoring Patricks progress over the last eight weeks, said: "Patrick has been an absolute pleasure to work with.

"He has turned up to every exercise session and has put in so much effort and has rightly reaped the rewards.

"He deserves every success he has achieved due to his hard work and consistency.

"I hope from the exercise and education he has received, he now feels more confident and able to manage his condition.

"We always carry out a pre-rehab and a post-rehab assessment and Patrick improved by 75 metres on his exercise test, which shows physical improvement from pulmonary rehabilitation we are very proud."

Anyone struggling to complete daily tasks due to shortness of breath can speak to a GP and ask to be referred to the service.

More about the different conditions and resources to help can be found at

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Breathing improvements for retired ambulance driver thanks to eight-week exercise programme - Express & Star

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