Why HIIT Should Be On The Road To Recovery For Patients With Heart Disease

Trifocus Fitness Academy - HIIT
Personal/Fitness Training Blog

Everyone knows that working out is good for you. For many people, just getting into the gym or going for a brisk walk is a major accomplishment in itself. However, if you look at the latest studies, it seems less exercise may actually be better for your health if done correctly.

High-intensity interval training is nothing new to athletes. Often shortened to “HIIT,” this training method helps to build endurance as well as strengthen muscles while delivering a heart-friendly cardio workout in a fraction of the time of traditional training methods.

High-intensity interval training (HIIT) can help heart patients with their recovery and is more effective than moderate-intensity continuous training in the short term. For the past few decades, cardiologists, as well as exercise physiologists, have suggested regular aerobic exercise for anyone with cardiovascular disease in order to improve cardiac function and lower disease risk factors. In more recent times, the recommendation has also included HIIT, which is an approach that includes short periods of intensive anaerobic exercise with less-intense recovery periods.

Why People Can’t Stick To Exercise Routines

The number one reason why individuals say that they are unable to stay with an exercise routine is that they’re far too busy. Here’s where high-intensity interval training, or HIIT for short, comes in. An ever-increasing body of research is demonstrating that bursts of high-intensity activity can get your heart and lungs just as fit, if not fitter, in less time as opposed to the conventional prescription of 30 minutes a day of mild-intensity exercise five days a week.

This sounds great for younger athletes however many older adults worry that this type of intense exercise will result in more health problems than it resolves, by putting their hearts at risk. But research on high-intensity interval training, particularly in older adults, including those who have age-related illnesses like diabetes and heart disease, is positive.

HIIT Training And Cardiac Recovery

Some cardiac rehabilitation programmes are now utilising HIIT training for many of their patients. HIIT training involves brief bursts of high intensity exercise, often more than 90% of a person’s maximum exercise ability. This is broken up by periods of rest or low-intensity exercise.

Some research has shown that HIIT has superior benefits over the more traditional, moderate-intensity continuous exercise. For instance, a study show that exercise intensity is an important factor for:

  • Reversing left ventricular remodelling
  • Increasing aerobic capacity, endothelial function – as well as quality of life – in patients with post-infarction heart failure.

Many individuals have seen vast improvements in their cardiac health when sticking to a HIIT-based exercise programme. While it may depend on your specific health concerns, most people should be able to start a HIIT-based programme. Your doctor can give you tips about the intensity or duration of intervals that you should start with.

If you are undergoing any of these during or after your HIIT exercise, you should stop your HIIT programme and call your doctor:

  • Dizziness
  • Shortness of breath which does not disappear
  • Nausea
  • Abnormal heartbeats
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Chest pain
  • Swollen legs
  • Trouble walking

Contact Trifocus Fitness Academy

If you want to discover more about HIIT, then you should do our HIIT and Functional Trainer Course. For more information, please follow this link.

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