Over the last few months, we’ve been carrying out some fascinating research into factors that help and hinder adults with CF to exercise.
We’ve been doing this so that we can make getting and staying active easier and more enjoyable for you, by providing you the right kind of support.
First, we conducted interviews. We spoke to some of you via video chat to hear about some of your experiences of exercise, asking questions like:
Then, based on what you told us, we created a survey to validate our results more widely and enable even more of you to have your say.
Within just a couple of weeks, we had 181 survey responses from:
These interviews and survey allowed us to see the differences in what helps or hinders you to keep active.
We compared the results from people to did not reach physical activity guidelines with those who did. These are shown on the charts below as people who 'exercise less' and 'exercise more', representing people who do less than the NHS recommended 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise, and those who do 150 minutes or more.
Here’s what we found...
People who do more exercise are more likely to have an exercise routine
They will tend to schedule when they are doing to exercise.
People who do not do as much exercise struggle with the thought of initiating exercise
Even if they felt much better once they had managed to start exercising and really liked the benefits of exercise that they experienced afterwards.
People who exercised less felt that exercise was a chore and something that they ‘have to do’
When speaking to us, some of you described exercise as something you "should" do, or have "got to" do. You even referred to it as a "necessary evil".
We found that people who didn’t exercise as much felt that their CF prevented them from exercising as much as they wanted
This was mostly down to issues like breathlessness and coughing. You also told us that these issues also sometimes made you feel more self-conscious when exercising around others.
We found that people who exercised less were more likely to struggle to set themselves a goal related to activity
However, we also noticed that some of you may have set yourselves goals without realising it, such as aiming to do exercise a certain number of times a week or try a new activity.
Enjoyment also plays a role in how much you are likely to exercise
The more you enjoy exercise, the more likely you are to do more of it…
Even though we identified these differences and barriers between people who meet or exceed the minutes of exercise recommended and those who don’t, there were some similarities, too...
The good thing is that:
This is amazing news!
However, it’s clear that you all want to exercise more - even those of you that are great at keeping active regularly.
We want to help you do this!
Helping you to exercise more is why we exist and that’s why we have conducted this research.
Based on these findings, we’ve been investigating some digital solutions that could help you overcome the barriers to exercise that you told us about, especially around creating a routine, setting yourself goals, and making exercise generally more enjoyable.
Stay tuned for more updates coming shortly...
In the meantime, you can get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org or on social media to get involved, share ideas and follow our updates.