After suffering a heart attack or other heart-related event, patients often find increasing their level of physical activity to be an exercise in anxiety.
A new program at Water’s Edge is designed to ease those feelings of trepidation. Classes supervised by an exercise specialist are being offered for those who no longer need continuous heart rhythm monitoring but who are not quite ready to start exercising independently.
“The biggest benefit is that participants will be exercising in a safe place,” says Brandon Strizich, exercise specialist and fitness manager at Water’s Edge. “The program provides peace of mind, with monitoring by a professional.”
The classes are open to anyone with a physician’s referral. After an individual assessment, participants will begin a supervised exercise program tailored to their specific needs. The emphasis is on aerobic exercise, using fitness equipment that includes treadmills, stationary bicycles and upper-body strengthening exercise focused on improving cardiovascular conditioning.
The length of time participants spend attending the program will depend on their progress and readiness to continue conditioning on their own. Classes will meet twice a week at Water’s Edge. Some private insurance programs will pay for the cardiac exercise development program.
There are typically four phases involved in cardiac rehabilitation. Phase 1 begins while a patient is still hospitalized, with intensive medical and rehabilitation assistance that continues in the outpatient setting. It extends into the patient’s home and community as he or she works toward optimal heart health.
One of the biggest advantages of the classes at Water’s Edge is that they allow people facing the same medical and physical issues to work together and support each other as they work toward optimal health.
The second phase involves the beginning of physical exercise, with constant monitoring of heart rhythm normally required. MCMC already offers the first two phases of cardiac rehabilitation. The new cardiac exercise program at Water’s Edge is part of the third and fourth phases of rehabilitation, when a patient moves toward self-sufficiency.