Exercise Class Management

With a skilled exercise leader and multi-disciplinary team in place to deliver the exercise session, a comprehensive series of guidelines and protocols needs to be agreed for recruiting and managing patients. This will ensure the necessary clinical information and organisation are in place, prior to and during group sessions. Reference can be made to clinical guidelines, professional standards and competencies in American guidelines (ACSM, 2000; AACVPR, 2004).

For the UK context the following are relevant: BACR (1995), CSP (2002), SIGN (2002) and ACPICR (2003). The most recent guideline is the ACPICR (2003) management of phase III exercise, requiring the following protocols:

• referral and recruitment (ACPICR 2003 Std 1)

• patient consent (ACPICR 2003 Std 4)

• discharge planning (ACPICR 2003 Std 10);

Adoption and implementation of these guidelines require a planned, systematic approach to managing the exercise group. It may be helpful to consider the planning and responsibilities to be undertaken by the exercise leader and team in chronological sequence:

• prior to the exercise class;

• at the start of the exercise class;

• during the exercise class;

• at the end of the exercise class;

• after class members have left the session;

• transition to phase IV.

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