Control of heart rate


Much of the sensory infomation reaching our CNS comes from receptors within our bodies. All internal systems of our body need to operate effciently and be ready to adapt to meet the changing demands. Which requires the coordination of vast amount of infomation which comes from the monitoring of all internal systems.  

The Autonomic nervous system

Autonomic means 'self-governing'. Autonomic system controls the involuntary activites of internal muscles and glands, with two divisions.

  • the sympathetic nervous system - stimulates effectors so speeds up any activity, acts as an emergancy controller. Stimulates effectos during exercise or powerful emotions. It helps to cope with stressful situations by heightening awareness and preparing for activity. (flight or fight response)
  • the parasympathetic nervous system - this inhibits effectors and slows down any activity. Controls activities under normal resting conditions. Concerned with conserving energy and replenihsing the bodys reserves

Action of the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system normally oppose one another. They are antagonistic.

IF one system contracts a muscle then the other relaxes. The activites of internal glands and muscles are therefore regulated by a balance of the two systems.

Control of heart rate

Resting heart rate of a typical adult is around 70bpm. Is essential that this rate can be altered to meet…


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