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Study Finds Stair Climbing a Good Option for Heart Rehabilitation

Cardiac rehabilitation is a medically supervised program for people who have had a heart attack, heart failure, heart valve surgery. A recent study has found that stair climbing routines may be an effective form of cardiac rehabilitation.

Eighteen adults with an average age of 61 participated in the study. All were registered for cardiac rehabilitation and had a history of myocardial infection, coronary artery bypass graft, or percutaneous coronary intervention. Half were assigned to a traditional moderate-intensity exercise program and half were assigned to a high-intensity interval stair climbing program for 12 weeks. Cardiorespiratory fitness was assessed at baseline, week 4, and week 12.

Participants in both groups saw improvements in cardiorespiratory fitness at week 4 and week 12, even though the stair climbing group exercised for less time per session. Both groups also saw improvements in body mass, BMI, and muscle strength.

The study was conducted by researchers from McMaster University. It was published online ahead of print on February 16, 2021 in the journal Frontiers in Sports and Active Living.

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