The purpose of the present study was to assess the effect of hatha yoga training that was added to the standard cardiac rehabilitation (CR) program on the cardiac hemodynamic parameters and physical capacity of patients with ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI).
The study included 70 male patients aged 45-65 yr with STEMI who were treated by angioplasty. Patients were randomized to standard CR (control group) versus standard CR plus hatha yoga (experimental group). The training program lasted for a total of 24 d for each patient, with day 1 and day 24 used for medical examinations (electrocardiogram, spiroergometric submaximal treadmill test, and echocardiography). The remaining 22 d consisted of the actual training.
After the CR program the spiroergometric stress test parameters and left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) improved in both the experimental and control groups. The most notable changes in echocardiography parameters and physical capacity were in the experimental group. The results showed significant main effect over time, a time-versus-group interaction in LVEF, the duration of the test, and peak oxygen uptake, and a time-versus-group interaction in metabolic equivalents (METs). We also noted the improvement of left ventricular end-diastolic diameter, left ventricular end-systolic diameter, and heart rate over time.
The results revealed better effectiveness in the CR program with a modified hatha yoga training program. Hatha yoga training could be recommended as an adjunct to standard CR.