Elliptical trainer or Rowing machines?

Would be great if PM club members comment in order to help me to make decision regarding physical exercises.

Status: I have PM implanted 5 years ago. There was found a problem with one lead (was "loosing a signal" ) 1/2 year ago. After a very detailed check (incl. contrast computer angiography, ecografia etc.) nothing found - no dislocation, no broken lead (that could be visible; probably some problem inside of electrode). Moreover, due to all parameters during 5-year checks (every ½ year) are very good, my doctor made a decision to completely switch off my PM (no need). So, it is working in “sleeping mode” like a big Holter until battery ends.

Question: Could be any restrictions to use some “cardio” / “aerobic” machines  for exercises at home (having a full quarantine for a long time) in terms of risks to get leads / electrodes “broken” while moving arms. Previously was told by doctor to avoid exercises when a cables could be potentially “folded” / “twisted” often. Nothing related to my personal health case – just like a common recommendations.

I am thinking about elliptical trainer or rowing machines? Both require active movements of arms and shoulders (and the second one incl. chest).

Many thanks in advance for your advices.


Heart Rehab

by Theknotguy - 2020-03-21 14:11:54

During heart rehab they had me work on an elliptical.  I had had CPR and was really banged up so they watched carefully.  At first I was only on the elliptical for about 30 seconds.  The arm movement and broken ribs don't go along well together.  Since this was heart rehab the nurses didn't warn me about using the elliptical.  The were more concerned about endurance.  I think I was up to five minutes at the last.  Like I said, the broken ribs were real bummers.  

Past comments on this forum have indicated that most leads work out on their own so exercise doesn't seem to really affect them.  I also volunteer with a guy who also has a pacemaker.  He broke a lead but that was after he had worked up to lifting 300 pounds and doing repeated reps.  So I don't see the elliptical breaking leads unless they were damaged anyway.  He said he didn't notice anything and they found the broken lead at the next pacemaker check.  He was getting along OK when not lifting weights but the doc insisted he get the lead fixed ASAP.  That could happen to you too.  But sometimes you roll the dice and take your chances.  


by ASCH - 2020-03-21 15:07:33

So, an alternative could be stationary bicycle. But I like it less... and it's less efficient...


by AgentX86 - 2020-03-21 22:26:48

I walk a treadmill a couple of hours a day (not so much since the gym closed).  An incline can give quite a bit of exercise in a reasonably short time.  My endocrinologist said walking was probably the best exercise possible because it didn't over-stress the knees but still stressed the bones enough that they wouldn't lose calcium.  Swimming is probably easiest on the joints, but too easy on the bones.

I have a decent treadmill at home, but not as good as the gym (the running board means a lot).  I'd like to find a good recumbent bike because my wife prefers them. All I've found is pretty much junk.

? Rowing is fine ?

by ASCH - 2020-03-22 12:12:18

Thanks to all for your inputs. 

Here is my concern now: "Like all mechanical devices, leads are subject to wear and tear. It is minimal with the routine movements of everyday life, but can be substantial with repetitive arm movements. Using arm-strengthening machines, rowing, lifting weights, and the like cause the lead to bend and relax repeatedly at the same spot. Over time, this can damage the lead."

The source: Harvard Heart Letter, Ask the doctor: Can exercise damage my pacemaker's wires?


"evidence is that your overall healt..."

by AgentX86 - 2020-03-22 14:19:40

While that is true, moderation gives the same benefits without the increased risk of permanent damage. One doesn't have to run a half marathon every day to get all the benefits of running but doing so greatly increases one's risk of a number of serious health problems.


by Tracey_E - 2020-03-23 12:02:06

I personally prefer a rower over elliptical because it works more muscles. My doctor says use what equipment I want, just stay fit. I don't have any restrictions on what I can do. Get whatever you like best and are most likely to stick with. 

You know you're wired when...

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