Randomized Trial of Progressive Resistance Training to Counteract the Myopathy of Chronic Heart Failure

By Ty Sevin, Aug 31, 2021

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Pu CT, Johnson MT, Forman DE, Hausdorff JM, Roubenoff R, Foldvari M, Fielding RA, Singh MA. Nutrition, Exercise Physiology, and Sarcopenia Laboratory, Jean Mayer US Department of Agriculture, Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging, Tufts University, Boston 02111


To determine the effectiveness of progressive resistance training (PRT) at counteracting the myopathy of CHF, sixteen older women with CHF were compared with 80 age-matched peers without CHF and randomized to progressive resistance training or control stretching exercises for 10 weeks. Women with CHF had significantly lower muscle strength but comparable aerobic capacity to women without CHF.


Exercise training was well tolerated and resulted in no changes in resting cardiac indexes in CHF patients. Strength improved by an average of 43.4 +/- 8.8% in resistance trainers vs. –1.7 +/- 2.8% in controls and muscle endurance improved by 299 +/- 66% vs. 1 +/-3%. The 6-minute walk distance improved by 49 +/- 14m for resistance trainers verses –3+/- 19m for controls. Higher scores in the 6-minute walk were directly related to increases in type 1 fiber area and citrate synthase activity in skeletal muscle.


High-intensity progressive resistance training improves impaired skeletal muscle characteristics and overall exercise performance in older women with CHF. These gains are largely explained by changes in skeletal muscle and not resting cardiac adaptations. By increasing exercise tolerance, PRT has the potential to significantly improve the quality of life of those with CHF.

Keiser Equipment Used

Seated leg press, chest press, knee extension, triceps and knee flexion 

Published in Journal of Applied Physiology, 2001 June; 90 (6):2341-50

Link to Original Research

About the author

Ty Sevin

Director of Human Performance, Education and Research

Articles by Ty Sevin >

With over 25 years of coaching experience at both the collegiate and Olympic levels, Ty Sevin is one of the most influential track and field coaches in the country. Ty has worked for the United States Olympic Committee, serving as the Director of the Track and Field Residency Program at the USOC Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, CA. He has also served as an assistant coach for Team USA on three separate occasions, for both the men’s and women’s teams. Ty himself was a four-time U.S. Olympics Trials qualifier in javelin. Ty most recently spent four years as the Associate Head Coach at the University of Texas at Austin for both the men’s and women’s track and field teams. Prior to that, he led the men’s and women’s track and cross-country teams at the University of New Orleans and McNeese State.

Currently, Ty applies his vast industry experience to the role of Director of Human Performance, Research and Education for Keiser Corporation, where he consults with college and professional sports teams regarding the utilization of Keiser strength equipment. He is also responsible for creating educational curriculum relating to human performance and overseeing Keiser research projects