CONTEXT Resistance training may be beneficial for patients with chronic heart failure (CHF). OBJECTIVE To systematically review the methodological quality of, and summarise the effects of, moderate-to-high intensity resistance training in CHF. DATA SOURCES Medline/PubMed, Science Citation Index Expanded, SSCI and A&HCI. STUDY SELECTION English language (non-)randomised controlled trials. DATA EXTRACTION A predesigned data extraction form was used to obtain data on trial design and relevant results. Methodological quality of the identified trials were scored using the Delphi list. RESULTS Most of the 10 trials identified had moderate-to-severe methodological limitations. Effects of resistance training (alone or in combination with endurance training) are inconclusive for outcomes like exercise capacity and disease-specific quality of life. CONCLUSIONS Even though moderate-to-high intensity resistance training does not seem be harmful for patients with CHF, the current peer-reviewed evidence seems inadequate to generally recommend incorporation of resistance training into exercise-based rehabilitation programmes for patients with CHF.