Do you think that Mat Based Pilates helps Atrial Fibrillation?
During your Mat based Pilates exercise there will be an increased heart rate and increased oxygen utilisation but there have been few studies that show the actual benefit that Pilates can provide to the heart. Over the next few weeks we’ll look at conditions of the heart and some available research on what improves cardiovascular health.
Atrial Fibrillation (AF) is the most common type of arrhythmia. It is an electrical disruption of the rhythm of the heart, causing an irregular and often rapid heart rhythm.
AF usually causes the heart’s lower chambers, the ventricles, to contract faster than normal. When this happens, the ventricles can’t completely fill with blood. Thus, they may not be able to pump enough blood to the lungs and body. While some people are asymptomatic (and the problem is only discovered during a physical examination), AF can lead to signs and symptoms, such as:
* Palpitations (feelings that your heart is skipping a beat, fluttering/beating too hard/fast)
* Shortness of breath
* Weakness or problems exercising
* Chest pain
* Dizziness or fainting
* Fatigue (tiredness)
AF has two major complications—stroke and heart failure.
During AF, the heart’s upper chambers, the atria, don’t pump all of their blood to the ventricles. Some blood pools in the atria. When this happens, a blood clot (also called a thrombus) can form. If the clot breaks off and travels to the brain, it can cause a stroke. (if it travels to another part of the body, e.g. lung, it is called an embolus).
Blood-thinning medicines to reduce the risk of stroke are thus often given to people suffering from AF.
b) Heart Failure
Heart failure occurs if the heart can’t pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs. AF can lead to heart failure because the ventricles are beating very fast and can’t completely fill with blood. Thus, they may not be able to pump enough blood to the lungs and body.
Fatigue and shortness of breath are common symptoms of heart failure. A buildup of fluid in the lungs causes these symptoms. Fluid also can build up in the feet, ankles, and legs, causing weight gain.