Why is Research Important?

Congenital Heart Disease (CHD) is a leading type of birth defect – and an increasing number of these children are living into adulthood as a result of advances in surgical interventions. However, children with CHD are predisposed to developing modifiable risk factors later in life such as cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis. Cardiac rehabilitation programs for adults are well established non-pharmacological treatments for individuals with various cardiac conditions. Yet, there is little research to show the effectiveness and feasibility of a pediatric physical activity and mental wellness program.

The research team of the Mending Little Hearts Fund is made up of doctors and researchers from the College of Kinesiology, College of Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan and the Department of Psychology at the University of Regina. The research team contributes to and helps facilitate programming at CHAMPS Camp, in addition to numerous research initiatives outside of camp involving children, youth, and adults with CHD.

The Goals of CHAMPS Research


Determine if we can change important health measures (exercise capacity, body composition, blood vessel health, psychological health, nutritional habits, etc.).

Answer the question “Is it feasible to deliver regular year-round congenital heart disease management programming for children and their families?”

Increase the impact of health benefits that CHAMPS can offer for children and adolescents with CHD.

Participate in a Study

Join our study looking at the effects of a cardiac rehab program for children with Congenital Heart Disease!

We are inviting children with Congenital Heart Disease to participate in our current research study, looking at the effects of a 6-month physical activity and health behaviour program intervention.

Participation Eligibility:

  • 7-17 years of age
  • Clinical diagnosis of Congenital Heart Disease

Participation will include:

  • 2 research testing sessions measuring body composition, bone health, heart health, and mental wellness (all non-invasive)
  • **6-month physical activity & mental wellness program designed specifically for children with CHD

**We are also recruiting participants to complete the research testing sessions ONLY. Please contact us for more information.

COVID-19 Precautions

Your safety is our top priority. Our research facility has implemented standardized cleaning procedures and vaccination requirements for all personnel (2 doses).  Research personnel will complete a Rapid COVID-19 test 1 hour prior to your testing appointment as an additional measure. Rapid tests will also be available for families if they wish to receive one.


Interested in participating? Contact us for more information!

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Research News

Research: Our next CHAMPS Study

Research: Our next CHAMPS Study

CHAMPS 6 Month Exercise & Mental Wellness Study The Mending Little Hearts Team was thrilled to be awarded funding from the Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation (SHRF) & the Saskatchewan Centre for Patient-Oriented Research (SCPOR) for our next CHAMPS study....

CHAMPS 12 – week home based exercise training pilot study

CHAMPS 12 – week home based exercise training pilot study

2018 - CHAMPS 12-week home based exercise training pilot study In 2018, the second large scale research project was launched involving CHAMPS camp. Researchers were interested in how a more frequent chronic disease management program for children with congenital heart...

Research funding provided by: