Heart rate monitors, exercise, and health
Heart rate monitors can assess a person’s heart rate and reveal whether it is high or low. Heart rate is a “clinical indicator of overall cardiac health,” and it can also help a person determine their performance during a workout.
A 2019 review notes that physical exercise can help reduce symptoms of cardiovascular disease. Sometimes, doctors may recommend using a heart rate monitor to ensure that an individual does not place their heart under stress. For example, a person can lower their workout intensity or stop exercising if they see that their heart rate is too high.
The Texas Heart Institute also advises warming up before exercising, as this increases the heart rate slowly and prepares the body for the coming exercise.
According to the American Heart Association (AHA), people who have a heart condition or take medication should ask a doctor what the target range for their heart rate should be.
However, a 2020 study found that although fitness trackers that use optical heart rate sensor technology provide accurate readings, they may still sometimes produce errors. Therefore, a person should not completely rely on these readings for measuring the intensity of their workout.