The Cardiorespiratory Team is a cohesive blend of scientists and trainees from multiple disciplines who are focused on the primary goal of prevention and better management of cardiovascular disease. Our three pillars of research are:
- Optimization of exercise and health behavioural models: This area includes the investigation of rehabilitation programs for people with cardiovascular disease, but also for several chronic disease populations (e.g., stroke, diabetes and cancer) that have become increasingly more complex and pervasive. Building on our long tradition of research into exercise models, we are examining innovative higher intensity exercise for vulnerable populations and the effects of exercise on fitness, function and physiology. The team also addresses access and barriers to cardiac rehabilitation, with particular emphasis on sex-related differences. Novel behavioural supports including use of financial health incentives, peer support, technology and music to promote long-term adherence are being explored. The brain-heart connection is another important focus with respect to cognitive function, mood, stress and sleep in chronic disease populations.
- Patient education with the goal of behaviour change: We have developed a systematic process for the assessment of patient knowledge, design and delivery of therapeutic education, and quantification of subsequent behavior change and health outcomes. An important aspect of this theme addresses needs in multicultural communities close to home and around the world.
- Impact into global communities: Our program has been providing leadership with the international cardiac rehab community, especially when it comes to sharing resources and spearheading collaborative research with low- and middle-income countries around the world. Measurement of our impact on patient outcomes and cardiovascular health services utilization is another important focus.