Individualized supervised resistance training during nebulization in adults with cystic fibrosis

Ina Shaw, Janine E. Kinsey, Roxanne Richards, Brandon S. Shaw


Background  & Objective: Since dyspnea limits exercise adherence and intensity in cystic fibrosis (CF) patients, engaging in resistance training (RT), which causes less dyspnea than other exercise modalities, while using nebulizers could not only overcome this barrier, but also enhance long-term adaptations to treatment. The objective of this study was to examine the effects of RT during nebulization on spirometry, anthropometry, chest wall excursion, respiratory muscle strength and health-related quality of life (HRQOL).

Methods: Fourteen  male and female CF patients were assigned to a four-week, 20-minute, 5-day per week proof-of-concept RT group (RTG) (n=7) or non-exercising control group (CON) (n=7), with 3 CON patients later dropping out of the study. Patients performed whole body exercises for 3 sets of 10 reps using resistance bands, since such bands have previously demonstrated a greater effect on functional exercise capacity than conventional RT in lung patients.

Results: The RTG displayed significant (p≤0.05) increases in FEV1, FEV1/FVC, latissimusdorsi strength, pectoralis major clavicular portion strength, pectoralis major sternocostal portion strength and emotional and digestion HRQOL domains, while decreasing pectoralis minor strength on the left and social, body image and respiration HRQOL domains.

Conclusion: This small scale proof-of-concept investigation demonstrates the multiple and simultaneous benefits of RT during nebulization in CF patients. The improvements in pulmonary measures are particularly promising especially since this study only made use of a four-week experimental period. This study provides an important alternative, time-saving treatment for the CF patient that does not add to the treatment burden of CF patients.


How to cite this:Shaw I, Kinsey JE, Richards R, Shaw BS. Individualized supervised resistance training during nebulization in adults with cystic fibrosis. Pak J Med Sci. 2016;32(5):1152-1157.   doi:

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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