For athletes and workout enthusiasts, tracking their sessions is an essential aspect of their training. That way, they can adjust their workouts and hope for better results in the end. By seeing their momentary heart rate, they can understand if they need to increase the intensity for a better session.
Various methods can be used in tracking the parameters necessary for the workout. The most accurate method is external HRV devices that are getting placed on our chests. However, various smartphone apps manage to do measure variability as well.
Since we all have phones, these apps are used more frequently because of how accessible they are. However, to get better results while training, you need an accurate application to assist you. For that reason, we have made this article where we will talk about the accuracy of the HRV apps and how we benefit from them.
What is heart variability rate
Unlike the heart rate, which counts only the heart’s contractions, the variability measures the distance and time between the contractions. This is being measured by calculating the time between each large upper spike on the ECG.
Although you might think that the distance is being equal between each systole, it is not. We can understand that practically. If we have a rate of 60 beats in a minute, that does not mean that every contraction lasts a second. The variations that are being measured tell a lot about a person’s fitness, and that is why many professional athletes are using them.
What affects the variability rate
The variability rate is never constant, so various situations affect this measurement. One factor that you cannot influence is age, sex, and genetics. However, the variability rate can be changed by the training intensity and the resting periods. In addition, the hormones and the metabolism have a crucial role in the length between two systoles.
Another important thing for athletes and sports enthusiasts is dieting. That also impacts the variability, and by following a balanced diet, you can expect improvements. Stress is another factor that affects the HRV. You will need to manage your life to incorporate everything from above to improve your variability and get better sports performances.
What are HRV apps
HRV apps measure the heart rate that you can install on your smartphone. There are various HRV applications with various accuracy. The population has been separated into two categories: those who believe these results and those who think they are entirely false.
This application works by using the light sensor of the camera. By tracking the colorization of your skin, you can calculate the blood supply and the appropriate heart rate. Sure, there can be a standard deviation in missed beats, but these applications have shown relatively accurate results. Of course, if you select an app that has been well established and reviewed.
How accurate are they
The accuracy in these applications varies. They can be either completely accurate or inaccurate. It depends on the program that you are using. While all the major smartphone companies have developed applications on their own, there are also some great options in the app market.
These applications can lose from one up to twenty beats per minute, which determines their accuracy. That is why it is important to find the right app to get the best results. Furthermore, since you will be using this software while working out, it needs to be precise; otherwise, it is completely useless.
In summation, these applications are accurate. However, you need to research an app and check the reviews of its users. That will help you to determine whether this is the program you will rely on your progress on, or you should be looking for another.
How to improve their accuracy
If you want an additional measure to make sure the app will track your parameters precisely, there are a couple of ways you can improve that. Firstly, you can get yourself a smartwatch that can connect with the app or that has its application. Since it is connected to your wrist, it can give you precise results about your heart rate, oxygenation, and blood pressure. Basically, as more parameters you can get, the better.
The most precise solution is by getting heart rate variability monitors. Although this is being used merely by professionals and athletes, you should be able to afford it if you want to track your progress better. Their prices range from around 50 dollars for a cheaper option up to half a thousand for a high-end device and you can click here to find more information about it.
These monitors have various options that you can find helpful. While they can connect to most of the smartphone heart variability programs, they also have their own apps. In addition, they can connect with video equipment, so if you are recording your sessions, your heartbeat can be visible on the screen.
Benefits from using apps like these
The benefits of using an HRV application are straightforward. You can track your activity and your heart’s load accommodation.
Firstly, the displayed numbers have a range for every category of people, including age, sex, and weight. By knowing your limits, you can see if you need to increase the intensity to meet your goal quicker.
Secondly, the app serves as a personal trainer. The information that is displayed can motivate you to always do better. In addition, the application can record the data of all your sessions, and you can observe your progress better.
Lastly, you will be able to manage your training sessions perfectly. By following your rate and variability, you can increase or decrease the intensity, coming up with a perfect workout. In addition, some apps offer other parameters, such as the number of calories you have burned. That way, not only can you enhance your performance, but you will be more motivated, which is always beneficial.
That’s about it! As you can see, HRV monitors can be extremely useful in the right situations.