COPD Exercise Classes

COPD Exercise Classes

Gentle exercise to help with management of long term pulmonary conditions.


To help participants with long term health conditions, who are referred by a health professional, to attend and safely participate in exercise sessions. These exercise sessions are specifically designed following British Lung Foundation (BLF) and British Thoracic (BT) guidelines for pulmonary rehabilitation.

The exercise sessions are designed to improve exercise capacity in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease by a clinically important amount. The aim is that after completing the sessions, participants are able to manage their conditions and improve control of their breathing to be able to continue with activities of daily living and enjoy an improved quality of life. Exercise classes are delivered by our Physical Activity Referral Service(PARS).


Withington, Moss Side & Harpurhey

Benefits of exercise

Exercise is beneficial for both physical and mental health. In adults, exercise has a positive impact on numerous chronic conditions such as diabetes and heart disease, whilst in older adults it has been shown to help prevent falls. Physical activity improves mental wellbeing across all ages, including for people with disabilities. Physical activity can also deliver cost savings to the health and care system by reducing preventable illness thus demand on services.


“I’m 76, this class has been something I have looked forward to and enjoyed. It has really helped me mentally and physically to stay in touch with the world and to keep mobile.”

“I have really enjoyed our classes and have found the format of an exercise class better for me personally than circuit training or a gym routine. I felt instructions were very clear and easy to understand, whilst maintaining professional standards and ensuring that we were all working safely at all times. The exercises were adapted to enable all levels of ability to participate, and explanations given on which muscle groups were being worked. I always had fun as well!”

“The classes are very varied. What I like about his classes are that once we start, we don't stop until the class finishes. These classes give a bit of structure to my week, I do 2 or 3 of them while I can.

I am on a weight management programme, which has been quite hard for me, but since doing these classes I have noticed that my clothes are fitting me like never before, and I have lost weight and toned up. This has benefitted me in a lot of ways, it’s great physically, but even better mentally. We always speak to each other after class which is very good, we have a bit of a laugh!”

“I really enjoyed it. I feel these classes are very beneficial for me and would really like to do more. They help to ease pain in my hips, knees, and my mental attitude. Many thanks.”


Exercise sessions are set up within local community areas across Manchester using facilities such as leisure centres, places of worship, lifestyle, community and public centres and parks. This makes them accessible to anyone and easily reached, even if participants only use public transport.

Sessions are often set up to meet demand within a local area. Whether that be in relation to a certain class type (condition specific), increasing the number of classes or to meet diversity and equality, such as ladies only sessions.

Because sessions are community based it allows our Physical Activity Referral Service team to have good links with leisure centres. Community classes create a valuable pathway for long term, more independent exercise.

Project Team

buzz Manchester Health & Wellbeing Service

Manchester City Council



Hough End Leisure Centre

Moss Side Leisure Centre

North City Family and Fitness ...


Referral from a health professional is needed for someone to attend these classes. You can refer people here.

If you want any more information or have any questions please email or call 0161 271 0505 (option 1).

Strategic links to local/national policies



Helping people live healthier lives

Healthy Lives, Healthy People (MH Government, 2010)

Fair Society, Healthy Lives (Institute of Health Equity, 2010)

The Manchester Locality Plan – A Healthier Manchester

Manchester Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Manchester Prevention Programme

Increased mental wellbeing

Manchester Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Greater Manchester Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Reducing avoidable illness/death

NHS Five Year Forward View (Department of Health, 2014).

The Manchester Locality Plan – A Healthier Manchester

Manchester Population Health Plan

Helping people age well

Taking Charge of our Health and Social Care in Greater Manchester (GMCA, 2015)

Manchester Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Manchester Population Health Plan

Evidence Base

Department of Health and Social Care (2019) - UK Chief Medical Officers' Physical Activity Guidelines 2019

Public Health England (2016) - Health matters: getting every adult active every day

Public Health England (2018) - Physical activity for general health benefits in disabled adults:

Summary of a rapid evidence review for the UK Chief Medical Officers’ update of the

physical activity guidelines.

Sherrington C, Fairhall NJ, Wallbank GK, Tiedemann A, Michaleff ZA, Howard K, Clemson L, Hopewell S, Lamb SE. (2019) Exercise for preventing falls in older people living in the community. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, Issue 1. Art. No.: CD012424.

Sport England (2017) - Review of evidence of the outcomes for sport and physical activity: A

rapid evidence review.

If you found this page helpful, maybe someone else will too?

"The access, support and socialisation of effective exercise provided by the PARS Team is both vital and empowering."

Martin, Vascular Specialist Podiatrist, Manchester Leg Circulation Service (PAD)

Martin, Vascular Specialist Podiatrist, Manchester Leg Circulation Service (PAD) photo