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The heart and circulatory system The heart is made of muscle and it’s job is to pump blood around the body. The heart muscle contracts constantly to make sure every part of the body receives food,oxygen and heat. The heart is found between the lungs and is slightly left of the centre of your body. The heart and lungs are both protected by the rib cage. The heart and circulatory system Blood is transported around the body through blood vessels. There are valves in your heart which make sure that the blood always flows in the right direction through the blood vessels. Your circulatory system is a one-way system! The closing and opening of these valves can be heard as heart beats. Blood vessels There are three types of blood vessels: – – – Arteries Capillaries Veins Arteries carry blood Away from the heart. They start at the heart as very large vessels but divide many times until they become tiny vessels called capillaries which can be found in your body tissues. Capillaries allow food and oxygen to move from your blood into your body tissue and pick up waste such as carbon dioxide. Capillaries then join up to form large vessels called veins which take blood back into the heart. Copy and complete the flow chart by writing in the three types of blood vessel From heart To heart Pulse When the heart beats the arteries swell a little. This can be felt by placing the fingertips on any artery near the skin. The average pulse rate is 66 beats per min but can range from 60-80 beats per min. Pulse rate depends on size, age, and fitness of a person. A high resting pulse rate can lead to heart disease. A low resting pulse can indicate fitness. Pulse can be measured using fingers and stopclock or a pulsometer. Recovery time Fit people usually have low resting pulse rates and short recovery times. Their hearts and lungs are so efficient that their pulse returns to normal rate very quickly after exercise. Pulse rate and recovery time can be reduced by getting fitter.