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Heart Failure and Physical Activity

If you have heart failure, you may wonder if physical activity is good for you. You may worry that putting more strain on your heart could make your heart worse. But remember, the heart is a muscle, and like other muscles, it gets stronger with use.

Regular and moderate physical activity, such as walking, swimming, dancing, or biking, can improve heart failure symptoms. It can also reduce stress, and increase energy levels. Physical activity also decreases blood pressure, improves circulation, and helps you lose weight. These are all important factors in staying healthy, especially when you have heart failure.

Being physically active with this condition can be a struggle, and you may have to follow certain precautions. Talk with your healthcare provider before starting a physical activity program. If you’re not used to physical activity and are nervous about starting, your healthcare provider can help you develop a plan that fits your needs. You may be a candidate for cardiac rehabilitation. Ask your healthcare provider if a cardiac rehab program is right for you.

Online Medical Reviewer: Fetterman, Anne, RN, BSN
Online Medical Reviewer: Gandelman, Glenn, MD, MPH
Last Review Date: 6/1/2016
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