BACKGROUND:The interpretability of change in exercise test scores is an important measurement property. This study aimed to provide a framework for the interpretation of individual change scores of the 10metre incremental shuttle walk test (ISWT) in cardiac rehabilitation. METHODS:In a quantitative pre-post design study, 52 patients who were referred to a hospital outpatient department for cardiac rehabilitation participated in this study. Participants completed two ISWTs prior to cardiac rehabilitation. Post cardiac rehabilitation, participants completed a global rating of change score and two ISWTs. Change scores were analysed for smallest detectable change (SDC) and minimum important change (MIC). RESULTS:The SDC for an individual was 47 metres. The predicted MIC for participants to report an improvement ranged from 70 to 92 metres. The predicted MIC for participants who did not report a deterioration in the global rating of change (i.e., those who reported unchanged or improved) ranged from 16 to 42 metres. CONCLUSIONS:The MIC for patients who report any improvement in physical fitness and functional capacity is 70 metres. These results suggest that over an 8-week program, patients would need to improve by at least seven shuttles to perceive an improvement in their physical fitness and functional capacity. Patients with small increases in the 10-metre ISWT distance may still report deterioration in their physical fitness and functional capacity.