This article reports the development and assessment of an entirely autologous extraaortic counterpulsation system using skeletal muscle (latissimus dorsi). The technique has been performed and assessed in 16 sheep to quantify the effectiveness of counterpulsation over periods up to 28 days and to optimize the stimulation regimens for muscle contraction and fiber-type transformation. Hemodynamic changes have been quantified by calculation of the endocardial viability ratio. This has shown an increase of between 12% and 89% for 28 days. The wide variety of increase observed has been related to the development of an optimum flap configuration. The technique of surface impedance monitoring of flap blood flow has allowed the start of electrical stimulation after 48 hours with the introduction of hemodynamic benefit (1:4 mode) during the process of fiber-type transformation (in situ training). Extraaortic counterpulsation with autologous latissimus dorsi has been shown to be effective and safe for as long as 28 days. It has not been associated with any thromboembolic or infective complications, which we attribute to the exclusion of any foreign material in the design.