Heart Rate Variability: Sync Up with Your Body

The Biostrap wristband & shoeclip help to better understand your body and track fitness

HIGH DEFINITION HEART BEAT

Most wearables utilize a very basic PPG sensor capable of capturing your heart rate during moderate activity. Their signal, however is completely binary – counting only that a beat occurred. Our system is different – instead of checking your pulse at all times, we check while you’re still, allowing us to capture high-fidelity, raw PPG waveforms. These waveforms are the same kind that your doctor uses to evaluate your heart’s health. That’s why our device is being utilized by doctors and clinicians to monitor their patients.

Our clinical-grade PPG sensor allows us to gather extremely precise heartbeat data. Biostrap captures over 2,000 heartbeats every 24 hours. Every single beat is analyzed for 29 different parameters, then analyzed against all of your other heartbeats from the last 24 hours.

Heart Rate Variability

Doctors since 1965 have used Heart Rate Variability (HRV) as a diagnostic metric in determining fetal distress. (1) More recently, it has been discovered that the same metric can be applied to adults in a myriad of ways.

HRV Hero

What is HRV?

Simply put, it is the variation in time between two consecutive heartbeats. Illustrated above is a PPG signal for four consecutive heartbeats. The differences in the time duration of the peaks between successive heartbeats help us to calculate HRV.

Studies suggest that high heart rate variability indicates good health and high fitness levels. On the other hand, low heart rate variability indicates burnout or a stressful lifestyle. Moreover, HRV and age have an inverse relationship. Aging reduces the deviation from the baseline and hence leads to a decreased HRV.

Why it is important to monitor HRV?

Lower heart rate variability can be an indication of multitude of problems like hypertension, diabetes, obesity and other cardiovascular problems.

HRV is a diagnostic tool for determining cardiovascular diseases and arrhythmias (a condition of abnormal heart rate), sudden cardiac arrest, etc. Sudden cardiac arrest is one of the biggest causes of natural deaths in the U.S. There are about 325,000 adult deaths in the U.S. every year and it contributes to 50% of all heart disease deaths. (2)

Chronic stress can have a severe impact on overall health and performance and it can be easily seen in HRV data. It is important to restore balance in such situations for a healthy lifestyle.

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Athletes use HRV to evaluate their performance because physical activity has a direct impact on heart rate variability. It has also been a useful tool to determine if over-training is having a negative impact on athletes’ performance and to gauge performance during endurance training programs.

Monitoring heart rate variability provides us with detailed insights on body’s strength and fatigue or stress levels.

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