Environmental Conditions, Air Pollutants, and Airways

Daniele Zangla, Maria Rosaria Bonsignore, Giuseppe Morici, Fabio Cibella, Maria R. Bonsignore, Giuseppe Morici, Pierpaolo Baiamonte

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Citation (Scopus)


Air pollution is a major problem worldwide, which could be even more serious for athletes who train in urban environments. Exercise increases minute ventilation and exposure to pollutants, but the literature on the effects of air pollution in athletes is relatively scarce, with the exception of chlorine exposure in athletes of aquatic sports and air pollution secondary to ice resurfacing in athletes performing in ice arenas. Although air pollution may exert detrimental effects on athletic performance, little has been published on this topic. The largest body of information regards the impact of air pollution during urban active transport, i.e., walking and cycling in cities, due to the potential risk of air pollution in citizens and the need to rethink urban transportation strategies accordingly. In healthy subjects, the benefits of physical activity largely outweigh the disadvantages of exposure to air pollutants. In susceptible individuals, however, such as patients with cardiac or respiratory disease and children, detrimental effects have been demonstrated. Improvement in air quality, individual protective behaviors, and prompt communication to the population of dangerous air quality may help to limit the negative effects of air pollution on respiratory health.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationExercise and sports pulmonology: Pathophysiological adaptations and rehabilitation
Number of pages13
Publication statusPublished - 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine(all)

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