Evidence derived from studies which support the relevance of exercise as a core component of cardiac rehabilitation programs are presented, along with the beneficial effects of exercise training in counteracting the mechanisms sustaining the atherosclerotic process and cardiovascular risk factors in the context of secundary, as well as primary, cardiovascular prevention. Practical guides to plan exercise training programs are also provided with suggestions for specific pathological conditions and advanced age. Recent advances on the benefits of exercise training in patients with heart failure are reported along with the potential of telemedicine for home rehabilitation aiming to a widespread diffusion of exercise as a cardiovascular therapy. Finally, the possible risks of exercise and practical open questions in cardiac rehabilitation are discussed.
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