Cardiovascular and Respiratory Health

How can we help you to live better

What are cardiovascular and respiratory conditions? 


  • High Blood Pressure 
  • Coronary Artery Disease 
  • Atherosclerosis 
  • Heart Attack / Ischemic Heart Disease
  • Arrhythmia 
  • Heart Failure
  • Stroke 
  • Pulmonary Hypertension 
  • Peripheral Vascular Disease 

Respiratory Conditions: 

  • COPD Emphysema/Chronic Bronchitis
  • Asthma & Bronchiectasis 
  • Tuberculosis & MAC
  • Small Airway Disease 
  • Pneumonia 
  • Lung Cancer 
  • Interstitial Lung Disease 
  • Cystic & Pulmonary Fibrosis 
  • Sarcoidosis & Asbestosis

What does this mean for me?

The heart and lungs work together to pump, oxygenate, and de-oxygenate around 5L of blood for the average adult. Blood is moved through arteries to surrounding tissues and organs and is brought back to the heart via veins. The heart, lungs, and blood vessel structures compose the bodies Cardiorespiratory system, a system that is essential for tissues such as our muscles and our brain to be able function properly. Much like many other multi-factorial systems, if there is a floor or dysfunction in one of these structures, other structures can be affected which increases risk for further dysfunction or damage. For example, coronary artery disease can cause high blood pressure or heart failure, which can lead to heart attack, stroke, or pulmonary hypertension. This example shows the impact of vessel disease to heart dysfunction, to further health complications and 

So how can Exercise Physiology help? 

Exercise is a treatment that works the cardiorespiratory system. It provides a stimulus to the heart increasing its workload and challenges the lungs, increasing breathing rate and oxygen requirements to be able to perform movements. This when done appropriately under the right intensity and dosage for you can improve these systems. Exercise is great for improving both heart health and lung health, but also can decrease symptoms and risk factors of many different cardiovascular and respiratory conditions. 

Exercise Benefits: 

·       Lower Blood pressure 
·       Lower Blood profile (Cholesterol, plaque, blood glucose) 
·       Raise Blood flow and perfusion 
·       Increase Beathing quality 
·       Increase Oxygen efficiency 
·       Decrease Inflammation 
·       Increase Weight loss
·       Increase Aerobic fitness 
·       Increase Functional capacity 
·       Raise Energy 
·       Increase Cardiovascular health 

Cardiorespiratory Risk Factors: 

·       High blood pressure
·       High cholesterol, plaque, blood glucose 
·       Poor perfusion 
·       Reduced breathing capacity 
·       Smoking & Alcohol 
·       Increased weight 
·       Age 
·       Genetics 
·       Physical inactivity 
·       Poor Diet
·       Pollutants, allergens, occupation 

How do I know what is right for me and what might I be required to do? 

One of our exercise physiologists will ask you a series of questions covering topics such as your medical history, symptoms, test results or scans, medications, treating practitioners, current concerns, and goals. You may have a few clinical measures taken including blood pressure, blood glucose levels, and even spirometry. You may also be asked to perform a couple of physical assessments such as a cardiovascular fitness test (whether it be walking, cycling, rowing, or stepping), as well as various strength assessments including grip strength, sit to stand ability, and upper body strength measures. This process gives our Exercise Physiologists information to identify what should be monitored, and what the best dosage and intensities are for you, to enable you to achieve your goals and improve your health, without putting you at risk. 

These assessments sound difficult… What if I can’t walk that fast or far and steps make me out of breath?  

These assessments are chosen based off what our Exercise Physiologists deem as clinically necessary which includes thought around assessment difficulty. In some assessments, intensity is self-chosen by the patient, and accommodates for varying abilities and fitness levels. You will never be asked to do something we do not believe you can manage, and many tests have termination criteria to keep you from overdoing it and keep you exercising safely. 

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