Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Ball, Thomas E.

Degree Name

M.S. Ed. (Master of Education)

Legacy Department

Department of Physical Education


Heart--Diseases--Patients--Rehabilitation; Exercise--Physiological aspects; Vasomotor conditioning


Most research regarding cardiac patients and resistance exercise has utilized circuit weight training protocols. Thus the purpose of this study was to investigate the acute cardiovascular responses of cardiac patients to a strength training protocol. Fourteen cardiac patients (13 male, 1 female; mean age 57.2 ± 7.0 years) performed three sets at each of four Nautilus machines, including leg extension (LE), leg adduction (LA), arm cross (AC), and bicep curl (BC). Fifteen, twelve, and eight repetitions were performed at 40%, 60%, and 80% of one repetition maximum (1RM) respectively. Heart rate (HR), systolic blood pressure (SBP), diastolic blood pressure (DBP), and the electrocardiogram were recorded during the last three to four repetitions of each set. No angina, ST segment depression, or significant arrhythmias occurred during nautilus exercise (NE), save one subject who had runs of bigeminy and trigeminy between sets. The mean peak NE responses were less than the mean responses achieved at 85% of maximal oxygen uptake, except for DBP which exceeded 85% by 1 -13 mmHg during all sets of LE and during LA at 60% and 80%. Clinical exercise testing guidelines were exceeded once by one subject. During lower body exercise, peak responses were significantly greater during LE than LA and were significantly greater at 60% and 80% than at 40%. During upper body exercise, HR response was significantly greater during BC than AC at all three intensities, and rate pressure product (RPP) was significantly higher at 60% and 80% than at 40%. In conclusion, stable cardiac rehabilitation patients may participate in dynamic variable resistance exercise programs utilizing percentages up to 80% of MVC. The decision to allow participation must be made on a patient-to-patient basis.


Includes bibliographical references (pages 60-61).


61 pages




Northern Illinois University

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