Call the Veterans Heart Health program on 1300 246 262 to enrol now

FAQ.

Program Outline

What is the Heart Health Program and how does it work?

The Veterans Heart Health Program is a 12-month health and fitness program funded by the Department of Veterans’ Affairs and managed nationally by Corporate Health Management (CHM)

The Heart Health Program aims to help you increase your physical health and wellbeing and includes regular physical activity sessions tailored to your needs and fitness level and 12 health education modules.

The program covers a range of topics including: nutrition, weight management, diabetes, cardiovascular health, back care, stress management, sleep and physical activity

The program is offered in two formats –
Group Program
Individual Program (Outreach).

As a Heart Health participant, you are supported by a team of health experts and your fellow group members. You will have access to health education materials and practical tools and advice to help you achieve your health goals.

The Program includes:
• Weekly Group Exercise Sessions delivered by a qualified and highly experienced instructor who is dedicated to your veteran group (Group Program only)
• Personalised Exercise Plans reviewed every 12 weeks designed to help you achieve your specific fitness goals (Individual Program only).
• Monthly Health Education Workshops on topics such as setting healthy goals, nutrition and healthy eating, physical activity, chronic conditions, quitting smoking, responsible alcohol consumption, back care, stress management and maintaining a healthy heart.
• A Participant Manual with 12 health education modules containing useful material and information to use for your learning during the program and as a reference after you have completed the program
• Custom Food Dairy reviews and recommendations provided by a Nutritionist every 12 weeks with useful tips and ideas for improving your diet to achieve your health goals.
• Fortnightly Health Articles directly to your email inbox
• Access to an amazing team of nutritionists, and health and fitness experts, plus become part of the Heart Health community via our Facebook Page.
• An Achievement Certificate is awarded once you have successfully completed the program and all the program requirements at the program completion at 12 months.

What are the benefits of the Heart Health Program?

Like any health program, the results you achieve will be relative to your commitment and participation in the program.

Participants can typically expect to benefit from some or all of the following;
• Increased energy levels and fitness
• Weight loss or maintaining a healthy weight
• Prevention or management of chronic diseases
• Greater mobility in spine and joints
• Injury and pain management
• Learn healthy eating practices
• Stress management
• Better sleep
• Strengthening and Toning of muscles and joints
• Improvements in flexibility and co-ordination
• Lead a more balanced, healthy and active lifestyle
• Improved self-esteem and confidence
• Reduce alcohol and tobacco consumption
• Better relationships and sex life
• New friends

What is the difference between the Individual and Group versions of the Program?

The Group Program is typically held at a local Recreation Centre or Health Club. A group of Veterans participate in weekly exercise sessions and monthly health education seminars as conducted by a qualified and experienced Senior Group Fitness Trainer.

The Individual Program  is suitable for those who are looking for a customised individual program or who are unable to participate in a Group Program. It is delivered via phone, web and correspondence over a 12-month period with participants having their own tailored physical activity program and health education modules. Participants are supported by an experienced health coach and their GP guidance throughout the program. The health coach will conduct fortnightly sessions via the phone with you when it’s most convenient and will tailor a program specifically for you. The program will make it easier for you to exercise in a way you enjoy.

Which Heart Health Program is for me?

The Heart Health Group program is currently offered in certain locations around Australia. Visit HERE to view the locations in each state. If you would like to find out more or discuss whether a new program will be commencing in your area soon please phone CHM on 1300 246 262.

If you would like to speak to a Health Coach about your health goals or personal circumstances and discover if the Individual Heart Health Program is for you, contact CHM for a confidential consultation on 1300 246 262

Who is eligible for Heart Health?

The Heart Health program is open to all returned servicemen and women, and eligible peacekeepers who have not previously participated in the program. To find out if you are eligible, take the 2-minute online questionnaire by clicking HERE

How do I join Heart Health?

There are a couple of ways you can join the program;
• Online you can click HERE to Enrol or click any ‘Enrol Now’ button. You will be asked to answer a quick eligibility questionnaire and fill in your details in the online enrolment form. Once completed a CHM team member will contact you within 1 business day to get you started.
• Alternatively you can phone CHM during business hours on 1300 246 262 to enrol.

If you have any queries about the program, you can also ask to speak to a Health Coach who will discuss your goals and explain how the Heart Health Program can help you.

Once you have registered for the program, you will be asked to schedule an appointment with your GP to complete a medical clearance form. The medical consent form is downloadable from the website if you register online or we will post the form to you. You must receive medical clearance from your doctor before you can be enrolled in the Heart Health Program.

The completed and signed medical clearance form is to be returned via post (no stamp required) to:
Corporate Health Management
Reply Paid 87698
South Melbourne VIC 3205

Or scan and email to hearthealth@chm.com.au

Once we have received your medical clearance and enrolment details you will be able to commence on the program. If you are starting with a new group, you will receive an invitation via post to attend an Orientation session at your local Health Club or Recreation Centre prior to the commencement of the Program.

What happens at the Orientation Session?

If you are participating in a Group Program, prior to the commencement of the program you will be notified by mail and/or phone of a date and time for your Orientation session. This introductory session is held at your local Recreation Centre or Health Club. At the Orientation session you will meet your fellow veterans and familiarise yourself with the Centre and your support staff. You will have the opportunity to find out more about the program and ask questions. You will be also provided with your course materials and discuss with your new group which day(s) of the week you will be exercising together. If you cannot attend the scheduled Orientation Session please notify CHM on 1300 246 262.

Who is CHM (Corporate Health Management)?

CHM is a national organisation providing unique and professional health and fitness services to both the corporate sector and community at large.  In 2011 CHM was awarded the contract with the Department of Veterans’ Affairs to manage the delivery of the Heart Health Program throughout Australia.

With over 15 years experience CHM are industry leaders and their exciting, motivating and educational services are aimed to help participants achieve long-term health change.

CHM forms part of the Belgravia Group, with an extensive network of recreational and fitness facilities around Australia including Belgravia Leisure and the Genesis Health Club Franchise.

CHM’s highly motivated and tertiary qualified staff are crucial to the success of their programs, among which include Exercise Physiologists, Dieticians, Physical Educators, Injury Rehabilitation Consultants, Nurses, Physiotherapists, Psychologists, Motivators & Presenters.

Do I get a gym membership on the Heart Health Program?

Depending on the type of program you are enrolled in you will either receive access to regular group exercise sessions or  resources to support you to exercise regularly.  Resources provided will depend on your personal goals, location and other lifestyle considerations but may include membership access to a health club or recreation centre; or fitness and exercise equipment.

How much does Heart Health cost?

Heart Health is a fully subsidised program funded by the Department of Veterans’ Affairs.

How many times can I do the Heart Health Program?

The Heart Health Program can only be completed once. Therefore, we encourage you to consider that the program requires a commitment to participate in a minimum of 80% of scheduled activities for a period 12 months. If you need to withdraw or are unable to complete the full 12 months on the program, you may not be entitled to re-enrol.

Does the program cater for my personal fitness level (low or high)?

Yes. After you have received medical clearance from your GP to participate, your group instructor or health coach will be provided with a full overview of any relevant medical conditions and limitations. Group exercise sessions will allow for variations in individual fitness and you will be shown how to modify any exercises to make them easier or harder depending on your fitness or strength levels. Your group trainer will always be on hand to guide you through each exercise, the correct technique and appropriate intensity for you. On the Individual Program you will be provided with a personalised program that will be fully customised for your lifestyle, fitness level and personal goals.

Am I able to switch from the Group to the Individual Program?

Yes, if for any reason you are unable to attend the group sessions or would like to switch to the individual program, we can arrange for you to be mentored by a Health Coach. Instead of attending group exercise classes and education sessions, you will receive fortnightly calls from your Health Coach to support you through the rest of the program. To discuss your options please call CHM on 1300 246 262.

Participation and Support

What do I wear when exercising on the Heart Health Program?

You will need a pair of comfortable sports shoes to exercise on the program. We also recommend comfortable, stretch clothing that you can move easily in, i.e./ a t-shirt or polo shirt and shorts or tracksuit pants.

What do I bring with me to each session?

(Group Program Only) For regular group exercise sessions you will bring along a drink bottle and towel. You will be provided with a towel and drink bottle at the commencement of the program. If you are due to return any paperwork or your food diary, please bring this along and hand in to your group trainer. For each monthly health education session, please bring along your Participant Manual as you will be working through the module workbook with your facilitator during these sessions.

What happens if I go on holidays whilst enrolled in Heart Health?

Your participation in the Heart Health Program will be recorded so if you are planning a holiday or will be unable to participate in the program for a period of time, please notify your group instructor or health coach prior. If this is likely to be greater than 8 weeks in duration, please contact CHM on 1300 246 262 to discuss your options for suspending, extending or withdrawing from the program.

What health measurements are taken on the Heart Health Program?

The program is designed to assist in minimising your risk of developing cardiovascular disease. Your GP will take your initial heath measurements and they will be monitored every 3 months. These include your height and weight, (BMI – Body Mass Index), blood pressure (BP), waist and hip measurements (WHR – waist:hip ratio) and your cholesterol levels (TCL)

How often do I need to visit my GP?

You will need to make an appointment to visit your GP every 3 months on the program to have your measurements taken and your cholesterol levels checked. This is a requirement of the program.

I have a friend who is interested in joining. Is it too late to join in with our group?

No, it is not too late. Often the only way eligible Veterans find out about the program is through the Veteran Community so we encourage you to spread the word about Heart Health. New participants in your area may commence and join in with your group at any stage. In other locations, there may be a local Heart Health group or they may opt to enrol in the individual version of the Program. For more information on group locations, eligibility and the Heart Health Individual Program call CHM on 1300 264 242 or email hearthealth@chm.com.au or send us a message HERE

How much exercise will I be doing on Heart Health?

This depends on you. Your minimum commitment to the Heart Health program is to exercise at least twice per week however we would highly recommend for best results that you exercise more frequently than this. You will either have access to dedicated weekly group exercise session or you will have a personalised fitness program to perform.  Please note that we encourage you to also increase your overall levels of activity, which may include other sports, or recreational activities at home or outdoors. (i.e./ walking/jogging, cycling, swimming, golf, tennis, gardening)

How often will I get a new personalised exercise program?

(Individual Program Only) The Heart Health Individual Program provides the opportunity for your personalised exercise program to be reviewed and updated every 12 weeks. Speak to your fitness instructor or health coach to arrange.

How much support will I get on Heart Health?

Heart Health is a group program with like-minded veterans who will support each other every step of the way. Having a support system in place is very important when you start to make healthy changes to your lifestyle. Your dedicated group will be allocated a qualified and experienced senior fitness trainer to lead your exercise sessions. Heart Health participants also have access to the amazing support team of degree qualified Exercise Physiologists and Dieticians at Corporate Health Management who can help you with any of your specific questions. You will also be able to join in our Facebook Group, where your fellow Heart Health participants from around Australia get together to chat about their health and fitness experiences.

Do I get diet and nutrition support on the Heart Health Program?

Yes. Heart Health is designed to empower you with a solid understanding of nutrition and healthy eating practices so that you understand how to prepare your meals and what kind of foods you need to be eating to help you achieve your goals. At the commencement of the program and every 12 weeks you will be asked to complete a 3 day food diary recording everything you eat and drink. A qualified Dietician will evaluate your diary and then aligned with your personal goals, make recommendations for improvements, ideas for healthy meals and snacks and healthy cooking techniques. Examples of other things you will learn through the health education workshops are the fundamentals of nutrition, proteins, fats and fibres, meal preparation, eating for weight loss and reading food labels.

What if I can’t attend the group sessions?

If you are currently working or have other commitments and are unable to attend the weekly group exercise sessions, you are still able to participate in the Heart Health Program. We will customise a program to suit your personal circumstances, which may include access to a suitable fitness centre in your area, or the provision of home fitness equipment. You will receive telephone and email coaching from a degree-qualified health professional (Exercise Physiologist or Nutritionist) who will contact you every fortnight throughout the program. Your Health Coach will guide you through the health education modules, design personal exercise programs, provide dietary advice and support and keep you motivated to achieve your health goals.

Do I have to complete the Heart Health education modules?

Yes. Heart Health is a holistic health and wellbeing program. The education modules are designed to help you learn about various aspects of cardiovascular disease prevention. After completing the program you will have an improved understanding of exercise and healthy eating principles and you will have gained the skills, experience and confidence to stay fit and healthy in the long term.

What happens at the end of the 12 months when the Heart Health Program finishes?

(Group Program Only) The Heart Health program finishes with a final celebration with your fellow participants and group trainer. You will be asked to complete a survey to assess your health and lifestyle compared with when you commenced on the program.

(All Participants) You will be awarded a Certificate of Achievement for successfully completing the program, a Heart Health Graduate T-shirt and a Results Card showing your progress and key achievements over the 12months.

What happens 6 months after the Program ends (18 months)?

The Heart Health Program is designed to empower you with the knowledge and confidence to continue to manage your health. In order to ensure the program’s effectiveness it is important that we monitor each participant’s progress 6 months after completion of the program. You will be asked to complete a Health and lifestyle survey.

(Group Program Only)  You will be sent an invitation to attend a re-union session with your fellow participants and group instructor. You will have the opportunity to re-connect with each other, provide feedback on the program and complete a health and lifestyle survey.

Can other family members get involved in the Heart Health Program?

The Heart Health Program is funded for eligible Veterans and Peacekeepers only. Unfortunately, spouses and family members are not entitled to participate. We understand that once you start on the program, your diet and exercise routine will change. We encourage your spouse or other members of the household to support you in this and often all members of the household join in to eat healthy meals and become more active. Some fitness trainers will allow you to invite your spouse/partner along as a guest to some of the relevant education seminars. This is at the discretion of the Session Facilitator and must be agreed upon by all members in your group. Many fitness centres also have a discounted membership offer for Veteran’s spouses. Speak to your fitness trainer if you would like to know more.

Program Administration

Where do my forms go? Do I post them to CHM or give them to my group instructor?

All paperwork, food diaries and other forms are to be returned to your group instructor as soon as you have completed them. If you are enrolled in the Individual Program or not attending group sessions, please send the forms in Reply Paid envelopes provided or address to (no stamp required);
Corporate Health Management
Reply Paid 87698
South Melbourne VIC 3205

Or scan and email to hearthealth@chm.com.au

Who do I speak to if I have queries about the Heart Health Program?

Speak to your group instructor or alternatively you can contact CHM via phone 1300 264 242 or email hearthealth@chm.com.au.

Can my travel costs to attend Heart Health be reimbursed?

No. Travel costs are not able to be reimbursed as part of the Heart Health program.  We will arrange for you to attend a facility that is close to you.

Do I need to have email and internet?

No. All of your course materials are provided in your Participant Manual. Any additional materials will be sent to you via post or distributed via your group trainer.

What happens if I am injured or ill and cannot participate?

Your group sessions have been scheduled to run for 52 weeks however if you need to suspend the program a period of greater than 2 months but less than 6 months, we can offer you an extension of the program. Once the group sessions have finished, we can team you up with a Health Coach and support you on the individual version of the program for the remaining months of your program. To arrange to place the program on hold please contact CHM on 1300 246 262.
How long can I suspend the program?

If you will be unable to participate in the program for 8 weeks or more, we suggest you suspend the Program. You can suspend the program for a period of up to 6 months. To discuss your options please contact CHM on 1300 246 262.
What happens if I need to withdraw from the program?

As you are only able to enrol in the Program once, withdrawing from the program is only recommended under extenuating circumstances. To discuss your options or arrange to withdraw from the program contact CHM on 1300 246 262.

I am permanently relocating to another area or state, can I continue on the program?

Yes. Depending on where you are relocating, there may be a local Heart Health group, which you will be able to join.  Check group locations on the map HERE.  If this is not available, we will arrange for gym access in your new location (or a personalised home based program) and you will be supported by a Health Coach to continue to achieve your health goals via the Individual Heart Health Program.

When do I get access to the Heart Health manuals and exercise resources?

(Group Program) You will receive your Participant Manual and Fitness Pack when you attend the Orientation session. In the event that you are unable to attend this session, we will arrange for you to pick up the Pack from your Fitness Centre or if you are enrolling in the individual program, CHM will post this out to you.

(Individual Program) You will receive your Participant Manual and any Exercise Resources via mail our courier to your home.

Is my personal information kept private?

The personal and medical information you provide as part of the program will be stored securely and accessed only by staff involved in delivering the program to you.  All data collected as part of the program is collated and de-identified prior to being  reported to the Department of Veterans’ Affairs.

We do not use participant’s photos or personal information without consent. We occasionally publish articles about group or individual success stories, only with written permission from all parties. All Heart Health data is stored securely and complies with industry standards for medical record storage. We take protecting your privacy and information very seriously.

Health Concerns

I have a specific injury? Or medical condition

It is important to seek advice from your doctor before embarking on an exercise program, especially if you have pre-existing injuries or conditions. It is a requirement that you receive medical clearance in writing before you can be enrolled in the program. Your doctor will provide all relevant information about your condition and any limitations or restrictions needed for your group trainer before you begin exercising. Your group trainer will then be able to recommend which exercises to avoid and which ones you can perform safely or how to modify them according to your condition. We encourage you to communicate with your group trainer about your condition regularly so it can be monitored appropriately. If you have not yet visited your GP or would like a copy of the Medical Clearance Form, download a copy from this page HERE or please speak to your group trainer.  Call CHM on 1300 246 262 or email hearthealth@chm.com.au if you would like a copy posted to you.

I am pregnant?

Yes, you can participate in Heart Health if you are pregnant.  When you are pregnant it is important to combine a balanced eating plan with an exercise program to stay fit and healthy. This helps give your baby the best start in life as well as helps your body cope with the changes that occur during pregnancy and for recovery.

Some of the benefits of exercising throughout your pregnancy include:
• more energy
• stronger back muscles which can help manage back pain and strain as your belly grows
• improved posture
• weight control
• stress relief
• improved sleep and management of insomnia
• preparation for the physical demands of labour
• faster recuperation after labour
• faster return to pre-pregnancy fitness and healthy weight
• Increased ability to cope with the physical demands of motherhood.

Your Heart Health Coach or Group Trainer will advise you on appropriate activities that are safe during pregnancy, even for beginners, and help you participate in them. Activities may include walking, swimming, cycling – outdoors or on a stationary bicycle, exercise in water (aqua aerobics), yoga, stretching, Pilates or pregnancy exercise classes. More vigorous activates such as running or strength training can be done in moderation when you’re pregnant if you have already been participating in them. As a general rule pregnant women should aim to participate in three exercise sessions a week with rest days in-between.  The Heart Health Program provides a tailored exercise plan to suit your individual goals, fitness level and experience so whatever your stage of pregnancy, you can make positive improvements to ensure a safe and healthy pregnancy. The program is delivered based on your medical practitioner’s recommendations.

I am breastfeeding?

You can join Heart Health while you are breastfeeding; in fact we will provide specific nutrition support for you. Your baby will receive the nutrition needed for growth and development, while allowing you to shape up and tone. Please contact CHM on 1300 264 242 to arrange a dietary consultation with one of our qualified Dieticians.

I want to put on weight?

Whether you are looking to lose weight, maintain your current weight or gain weight, the Heart Health Program can help you to achieve your goals. Assuming that your difficulty in gaining weight is not due to a medical problem, and that you have received medical clearance from your GP to participate in the program, we can support you to gain weight in a nutritious and healthy way by providing specific exercise and nutrition advice and recommendations. Please contact CHM on 1300 264 242 to arrange a consultation with one of our Health Coaches.

I am of mature age?

We have had people from 21 to 93 participating in the Heart Health Program. The average age of Heart Health participants is 63 years so the program caters for all ages and fitness levels. Provided you have a medical clearance from your GP to participate in an exercise program, you are able to enrol. If you do have injuries or limitations, the exercises will be modified to suit you. Please seek advice from your group instructor, fitness trainer or health coach.

I am a diabetic?

Provided that you have medical clearance from your GP, you are able to participate. You will receive nutritional support every 12 weeks as your dietician reviews your food diary and provides recommendations for you. We would also encourage you call CHM to arrange a one-on-one consultation with a dietician at the commencement of the program. Throughout the program you will also learn more about managing diabetes through the health education modules and additional materials including fact sheets specifically on Type I and Type II Diabetes.

I have high cholesterol?

Many Heart Health participants have high cholesterol, but provided that you have medical clearance from your GP, you are able to participate. You will receive nutritional support every 12 weeks as your dietician reviews your food diary and provides personal recommendations for you. Throughout the program you will also learn more about reducing cholesterol levels through the health education modules and additional materials including fact sheets specifically on cholesterol.

I have high blood pressure?

Many Heart Health participants have high blood pressure, but provided that you have medical clearance from your GP you are able to participate. You will receive nutritional support every 12 weeks as your dietician reviews your food diary and provides recommendations for you to reduce saturated fat, sodium, refined sugar and increase dietary fibre. Throughout the program you will also learn more about managing high blood pressure through the health education modules and additional materials including fact sheets specifically on blood pressure.

I have osteoarthritis?

Many participants to the Heart Health Program suffer from Osteoarthritis and similar conditions, but provided you have your doctor’s permission to participate in a structured exercise program, you can participate. You will be provided with specific exercise guidance and nutritional advice to better manage your condition.

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