Physical activity (PA) is considered as the most effective non-pharmacological intervention to alleviate symptoms and optimize functional capacity of patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). However, a considerable proportion of eligible patients declines participation or drop out of PA programmes. The aim of the study is to determine the feasibility of recruiting patients with COPD and to access the efficacy of 3 months of different types of PA training models.269 males patients with COPD were identified from Respiratory Division of ULSS 20. Who match the study inclusion criteria (132) were contacted (92) to participate at our study. 37 partecipants were randomized in Fitness Center based activities (FC =13), in a PA Educational (EDU=12) and in a Control Group (CG=12). Behavioral, physiological and psychosocial outcome variables were reported pre and after 3 months of intervention. Analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) was performed to detect the significance of the change.Significant interactions were found in 6 minute walking test, upper and lower body strength, flexibility of the lower back, non dominant lower limb balance and IPAQ. Post-hoc analysis revealed significant differences between CF and CG in 6 minute walking test performances (15.20% vs. -2.85%), upper body strength (19.13% vs. -2.35%) and non dominant lower limb balance (114.55% vs. 17.46); significant differences between EDU and CG were found in upper (15.25% vs. -2.35%) and lower (13.25% vs. -1.08%) body strength, flexibility (+5.92 cm vs. -0.55 cm) and IPAQ (68.13% vs. -31.66%). No differences were found between CF and EDU. Compare to the literature, higher adherence (40% vs. 7%) to the program resulted in our study. Primary outcomes confirm the positive efficacy of physical activity programmes on physiologic parameters health related. EDU improvements was addicted to the high PA motivation provided by operators. Finally self-selected training can be used in order to improve the share of spontaneous PA and consequently health status, confirming ACSM international guidelines about PA support strategies.
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