Heart Rate Variability
Heart Rate Variability (HRV) is a relatively new biometric that indicates a persons stress levels. That could be physical or mental stress. Heart Rate Variability is a valauble tool for cyclists, runners, triathletes and also non athletes to keep track of their bodies stress levels.
Resting heart rate is typically measured as how many times the heart beats per minute. For most people its between 55-70 beats per minutes and it can be used as an indicator of fitness and fatigue. Someone with a lower heart rate may have a stronger heart (the heart is a muscle). With this stronger pump, it needs to pump less often because with each beat/pump it puts out more blood. Someone with a less developed heart, maybe somebody less fit, will have more heart beats per minute because their heart is not as powerful a muscle. There can be several other factors that affect resting heart rate and thats part of the issue. While it can be a helpful measure, there is actually a far more effective measure of health and stress...heart rate variability.
Ted Talk on HRV:
Heart Rate Variability Definition:
Heart rate variability or HRV is the variation in the time between consecutive heartbeats, measured in milliseconds. That time will vary more when we are relaxed, when our para-sympathetic nervous system is dominant. In contract when our body experiences stress, whether that be physical or emotional, the sympathetic system is more dominant and their is less variability between heart beats.