Cystic Fibrosis Exercise Programme

Nuffield Health runs a free and unique exercise programme with the NHS for young cystic fibrosis patients.

Our vision for children living with Cystic Fibrosis

We work with ten Trusts across the country to encourage children and young people with cystic fibrosis to take part in exercise. We hope that young people with CF can realise a number of benefits by working with the programme:

  • Education and confidence to help form good exercise habits for life
  • Improved physical fitness, strength and core stability
  • Improved quality of life and self-confidence
  • Reduced time at hospital for treatment
  • Slowed deterioration in lung function caused by the disease
  • Increased opportunity to take part in school and extracurricular activities.

“My lung function has stayed at a very high level, and has even sometimes improved. I’m more confident in things that I’m doing even generally. I feel like because I’ve shown so much progress through the training that I can progress in everything else…” Beth, 16

Recognised at the 2016 European Cystic Fibrosis Conference as being a successful exercise model, we offer the exercise programme through CF treatment teams at Great Ormond Street Hospital, Leeds Children’s Hospital, Royal Brompton, Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, Royal London Hospital, Kings College London, Alder Hey Children’s Hospital (Liverpool), Nottingham University Hospital, Manchester Children’s Hospital and Leicester University Hospital.

We also work with the CF Trust. For more information, visit their website and find out about other work they are involved in.

Want to get involved?

Due to COVID-19 we are currently unable to accept new referrals onto our Cystic Fibrosis Exercise programme.

In the meantime, our young people’s wellbeing hub is a great place for children and families to access interactive wellbeing resources, from exercise videos to fun wellbeing activities and fact files

Find out more here.

What does the programme involve?

Participants of the programme are offered a free one-to-one personal training session per week at a participating Nuffield Health Fitness and Wellbeing Centre. Working with one of our specially trained personal trainers, participants will develop and work through a tailored training programme to help develop lung capacity, aerobic fitness and general wellbeing.

Sessions are pre-booked in advance to help reduce the risk of cross-infection between young people with CF, and all of our CF personal trainers receive higher training to gain an understanding of the condition, exercise prescription guidelines, and to learn how to minimise any potential infection risks for the programme participants.

Find out more about our Cystic Fibrosis exercise programme guidelines >

“Working with Nuffield Health on the CF programme over the last few years has been fantastic. The team are supportive, dynamic and committed to providing and developing the high-quality service. (…) By offering ‘normal’ exercise environments and professionals Nuffield Health is facilitating exercise participation away from the clinical environment. Nuffield Health facilities are safe and supportive and help families to develop an exercise routine right from diagnosis. As well as appropriate exercise training, the young people and families also receive a valuable exercise education, which helps form good life-long exercise habits.” Helen Douglas BSc, MSc, Research Physiotherapist & PhD Student, GOSH & UCL