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Home > Health > Home Fitness Guide > Heart Rate Monitors > How Accurate are Heart Rate Monitors?

How Accurate are Heart Rate Monitors?

Heart rate monitors are very accurate - in fact they are as accurate as a an EKG as measuring your heart rate!

It was the company Polar Electro - way back in 1977 that made the first wireless heart rate monitor - and they made it very accurate - like an EKG. They created them to help a cross country skiing team to measure their training progress better.

There are other way of monitoring a heart rate also. Like just to take your pulse at your wrist. Just put two fingers on your wrist and feel for the pulse and count how many times you feel it each minute. Some people like this method. I personally don't - I know I wouldn't be able to count or measure it very accurately this way. I definitely prefer a heart rate monitor.

Another reason why heart rate monitors are more accurate is because you don't have to stop exercising to count and see what your heart rate is.

Sometimes there can be interference though from electromagnetic waves from other equipment like treadmills which can scramble the signal. Obviously if this happens, you will not get an accurate reading from your heart rate monitor. But that is not due to the design of the monitor. Although, some newer and more expensive models include a feature that gets rid of this interference.

Also, there are monitors that are called photo-optic models - these just clip to your earlobe or finger but these types are not an accurate. At least not now, because someday better technology will be developed for these types of monitors and they will be more accurate.

For the time being though - regular heart rate monitors are very accurate - as much so as an EKG! Here are a couple other articles about heart rate monitors on this site:

How Do Heart Rate Monitors Work?

How to Choose a Heart Rate Monitor.

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