Do world-class swimmers’ hearts function differently than the hearts of elite runners?
A new study finds that the answer may be yes, and the differences, although slight, could be telling and consequential, even for those of us who swim or run at a much less lofty level.
Cardiologists and exercise scientists already know that regular exercise changes the look and workings of the human heart. The left ventricle, in particular, alters with exercise. This chamber of the heart receives oxygen-rich blood from the lungs and pumps it out to the rest of the body, using a rather strenuous twisting and unspooling motion, as if the ventricle were a sponge being wrung out before springing back into shape.
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