Vital Sign, Health Indicator
Heart rate is the speed of the heartbeat measured by the number of contractions (beats) of the heart per minute (bpm). Measurable Range: 40-140bpm
Context is very important when analysing the number of times your heart beats per minute.
There are three main heart rate categories that can be used to determine a range of aspects about an individual's health.
- Resting Heart Rate
- Max Heart Rate
- Target Heart Rate Zones.
Resting heart rate is the number of times your heart beats per minute when at rest. A resting heart rate is ideally measured whilst asleep or just after waking up.
A normal resting heart rate for adults ranges from 60 to 100 beats per minute.
Generally, a low resting heart rate implies more efficient heart function and better cardiovascular fitness. For example, a well-trained athlete might have a normal resting heart rate closer to 40 beats per minute.
Your max heart rate is the highest recommended number of times your heart beats per minute whilst exercising (depending on age).
If you continuously exceed your max heart rate while exercising, it can lead to poor rates of recovery after exercise and increased risk for cardiac events such as:
- chest paint
How to estimate Max Heart Rate?
There are 2 ways to estimate max heart rate, which should be used as a general guide only.
- Age minus 220 (most common method). An industry used, reliable estimate.
- 211 minus 0.64 multiplied by Age. A less used method with increased accuracy for people 30+.
Heart rate zones are a percentage of your max heart rate and help objectively determine the intensity of an exercise you're performing. Basically, how hard your cardiovascular system is working.