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Sheldon G. Sheps, M.D.read biographyclose window
Sheldon G. Sheps, M.D.Sheldon Sheps, M.D.
Dr. Sheldon Sheps, emeritus professor of medicine and former chair of the Division of Nephrology and Hypertension in the Department of Medicine at Mayo Clinic, has been with Mayo Clinic since 1960.
Dr. Sheps, a Winnipeg, Manitoba, native, is board certified in internal medicine and specializes in hypertension and peripheral vascular diseases. He developed a multidisciplinary approach with specially trained nurses, dietitians, technicians and educators to help form a team approach to the treatment of patients with abnormal blood pressure.
"I have always believed in involving the patient and family in their health care," Dr. Sheps says. "I have asked for their understanding of the illness and issues and for participation in decisions. The Web is a natural extension of that, and now many more people can be informed."
Dr. Sheps chaired the sixth working group, and he participated in the fourth, fifth and seventh groups that developed the then-latest guidelines for hypertension under the auspices of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI). He helped write the latest American Heart Association (AHA) report on blood pressure measurement. He chaired an AHA group that produced an online accreditation for blood pressure measurement for health professionals.
Dr. Sheps has co-authored books, newsletters, CD-ROMs and other Mayo Clinic health information material. He joined Mayo Clinic's Web team in 1998. He was medical editor-in-chief of both editions of the "Mayo Clinic on High Blood Pressure" book; the last edition was published in 2003. He was also medical editor-in-chief of "Mayo Clinic 5 Steps to Controlling High Blood Pressure," published in 2008.
In addition, Dr. Sheps was section editor for each of the first three editions of "Hypertension Primer" for the American Heart Association.
Dr. Sheps was also chairman of the Science Base Subcommittee and the National High Blood Pressure Education Program, and he was a consultant to the Hypertension Initiative of the World Health Organization. In 1997, he was honored with the Individual Achievement Award on the 25th anniversary of the National High Blood Pressure Education Program of NHLBI. In 2009, he was honored as a Distinguished Mayo Alumnus.
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Weightlifting: Bad for your blood pressure?
Is weightlifting safe if I have high blood pressure?
from Sheldon G. Sheps, M.D.
Maybe. It depends how high your blood pressure is. According to the American Heart Association, you should not lift weights if your blood pressure is uncontrolled — meaning it's higher than 180/110 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg). If your blood pressure is between 140 to 170 mm Hg systolic or 90 to 109 mm Hg diastolic, check with your doctor before starting a weightlifting program to discuss any precautions or special considerations.
Weightlifting can cause a temporary increase in blood pressure. This increase can be dramatic — depending on how much weight you lift. But, weightlifting can also have long-term benefits to blood pressure that outweigh the risk of a temporary spike for most people.
Regular exercise, including moderate weightlifting, provides many health benefits, including helping to lower blood pressure in the long term.
If you have high blood pressure, talk to your doctor before starting any exercise program. Your doctor can help you develop an exercise program tailored to your needs and medical conditions.
If you have high blood pressure, here are some tips for getting started on a weightlifting program:
- Learn and use proper form when lifting to reduce the risk of injury.
- Don't hold your breath. Holding your breath during exertion can cause dangerous spikes in blood pressure. Instead, breathe easily and continuously during each lift.
- Lift lighter weights more times. Heavier weights require more strain, which can cause a greater increase in blood pressure. You can challenge your muscles with lighter weights by increasing the number of repetitions you lift.
- Alternate between upper and lower body exercises to let your muscles rest during exercise.
Blood pressure medication: Still necessary if I lose weight?
- Sorace P, et al. Resistance training programming for individuals with hypertension. Strength and Conditioning Journal. 2009;31:36.
- Cornelissen VA, et al. Effect of resistance training on resting blood pressure: A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Journal of Hypertension. 2005;23:251.
- Williams MA, et al. Resistance exercise in individuals with and without cardiovascular disease: 2007 Update. Circulation. 2007;116:572.
- Garber CE, et al. American College of Sports Medicine position stand. Quantity and quality of exercise for developing and maintaining cardiorespiratory, musculoskeletal, and neuromotor fitness in apparently healthy adults: Guidance for prescribing exercise. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise. 2011;43:1334.