Cardiac Rehabilitation

Patients who have progressed through the NHS Cardiac Rehabilitation system following heart attack,
cardiac surgery or other cardiac event graduate to Cardiac Rehabilitation Phase IV upon leaving the NHS system,

Most referral schemes place patients graduating from Phase III in a gym using treadmills,static bikes and a range of other equipment, however not everyone enjoys a gym environment and I offer personal training (or with a spouse/partner) and group work according to a client’s preferences and abilities.

Maintaining or improving on the level of activity achieved on Graduation from level III has significant health benefits for heart, blood system, lungs, muscles, weight management and mental health.


Qualifications:   BACPR Exercise Instructor, British Association For Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation, 2002, last revalidated 2012


Tai Chi for Cardiac Rehabilitation
We ran a Tai Chi for Cardiac Rehabilitation pilot program in south Birmingham starting in 2006 and measured patient improvement with the Dartmouth COOP score as recommended by BACPR.  The report is now complete and due to be published.

In brief:
Project Aims
1. To provide access to a Phase IV Cardiac Rehabilitation program for patients who have been discharged from UHBIT following an acute cardiac event or intervention through the provision of a weekly Tai Chi Class in a community setting.

2.  To quantitively evaluate the Tai Chi programme using the established COOP charts as advocated by the British Association of Cardiac and Pulmonary Rehabilitation (BACPR), which measure functional status and quality of life.

3.  To qualitively evaluate the Tai Chi program by using case histories of participants.


Significant inprovements were reported in the entire COOP dimensions analysed, the most evident being the positive change in health reported in 76% of the cohort.  Over half of the participants reported improvements in overall health (58%) and emotional status (50%).  A further 45% of patients reported improvements in their ability to undertake daily activities, and 41% in their ability to undertake social activities.  Improvement in physical fitness was reported in 32% or the cohort.

At initial COOP chart assessment none of the patients reported the least extreme dimension (ie score 1) for any of the COOP charts used. At endpoint 65% were fully integrating socially, 44% were able to undertake their daily activities with no difficulty at all, 29% reported their health was much better, 17% reported not being bothered by emotional problems and 5% reported they were able to undertake strenuous activity regularly.  COOP chart analysis suggested that Tai Chi had improved the general health and well-being of this cohort.

The improvements achieved by participating in Tai Chi were also reflected in improved quality of life for patients as evident in the case histories.  Patients were able to re-commence employment, avoid the need for planned orthopaedic surgery and actively participate in helping other cardiac patients; this was evident through speaking at support groups and education classes and also by offering individual support to patients during the Tai Chi classes themselves.

Balanced Approach/NHS UHBIT