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Kardiol Pol. 2017;75(1):21-27. doi: 10.5603/KP.a2016.0165. Epub 2016 Nov 23.

The effect of strength training on quality of prolonged basic cardiopulmonary resuscitation.

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Department of Emergency Medicine, Medical University of Warsaw, Warsaw, Poland.



Providing high-quality chest compressions and rescue breaths are key elements in the effectiveness of cardio-pulmonary resuscitation.


To investigate the effects of a strength training programme on the quality of prolonged basic cardiopulmonary resuscitation on a manikin.


This was a quasi-experimental trial. Thirty-nine participants with prior basic life support knowledge were randomised to an experimental or control group. They then performed a test of 10 min of chest compressions and mouth-to-mouth ventilation on manikins equipped with a skill reporter tool (baseline or test 1). The experimental group participated in a four-week strength training programme focused on the muscles involved in chest compressions. Both groups were subsequently tested again (test 2).


After training, the experimental group significantly increased the mean depth of compression (53.7 ± 2.3 mm vs. 49.9 ± 5.9 mm; p = 0.003) and the correct compression fraction (68.2 ± 21.0% vs. 46.4 ± 29.1%; p = 0.004). Trained subjects maintained chest compression quality over time better than the control group. The mean tidal volume delivered was higher in the experimental than in the control group (701.5 ± 187.0 mL vs. 584.8 ± 113.6 mL; p = 0.040) and above the current resuscitation guidelines. In test 2, the percentage of rescue breaths with excessive volume was higher in the experi-mental group than in the controls (31.5 ± 19.6% vs. 15.6 ± 13.0%; p = 0.007).


A simple strength training programme has a significant impact on the quality of chest compressions and its maintenance over time. Additional training is needed to avoid over-ventilation of potential patients.


cardiopulmonary resuscitation; physical fitness; quality; strength training

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