A new type of exercise to improve the health of patients with heart failure

Exploring the effectiveness of eccentric exercise training for patients with heart failure

Chronic heart failure (HF) is common, affecting two per cent of the population and 10 per cent of those over the age of 65.

Although impaired heart function initiates the syndrome, adverse peripheral adaptations in the skeletal muscles and vasculature are integral to the impaired functional capacity and quality of life experienced by HF patients.

Exercise training is particularly clinically relevant in HF because aerobic capacity, or cardiopulmonary fitness, is a potent independent predictor of prognosis, which guides timing and stratification for transplantation.

Exercise training is acknowledged for its efficacy in improving functional status in HF and is advocated in contemporary clinical guidelines as a Class I (level A) recommendation.

Despite acceptance in exercise science that distinct physiological adaptations are conferred by different types of training, few trials have compared the effectiveness of different forms of exercise training in HF.

The purpose of this project is to comprehensively investigate the effectiveness of eccentric exercise training (ET) in HF, a novel training paradigm which possesses several theoretical advantages over traditional approaches.

Our aim is to compare the effects of ET to those of conventional concentric training (CT) in a superiority trial, where both forms of exercise are performed at a matched cardiovascular intensity i.e. an intensity that elicits the same heart rate response.

The findings of this study will help to optimise exercise prescription in HF and directly benefit patients in terms of life expectancy and quality.

Read more about our exercise research or our cardiovascular research group

For more background information, see the suggested readings below.


Research team leader: Professor Daniel John Green

I am a human integrative biologist whose research focuses on the prevention of cardiovascular diseases. My specific expertise relates to novel imaging approaches to the assessment of micro and macrovascular diseases, including surrogate measures of early and occult disease.

How to apply

Interested in becoming part of this project? Complete the following steps to submit your expression of interest:

Step 1 - Check criteria

General UWA PhD entrance requirements can be found on the Future Students website.

Step 2 - Submit enquiry to research team leader

Step 3 - Lodge application

After you have discussed your project with the research team leader, you should be in a position to proceed to the next step of the UWA application process: Lodge an application. Different application procedures apply to domestic and international students.


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