What's in this article?
What is a normal resting heart rate?
The normal resting heart rate for adults, including older-aged adults and everyone over the age of 10 years, is: Between 60 and 100 heartbeats a minute. Athletes who have done a lot of training may see their resting heart rate fall below 60 beats a minute, possibly to as low as 40 beats a minute.
How do you check your pulse?
To check your pulse at your wrist, place two fingers between the bone and the tendon over your radial artery — which is located on the thumb side of your wrist. When you feel your pulse, count the number of beats in 15 seconds. Multiply this number by 4 to calculate your beats per minute.
What is the average heart rate at rest?
For adults 18 and older, a normal resting heart rate is between 60 and 100 beats per minute (bpm), depending on the person’s physical condition and age. For children ages 6 to 15, the normal resting heart rate is between 70 and 100 bpm, according to the AHA.
What does it mean when your heart beats fast?
A fast pulse means you’re stressed out. Stress can spikeyour resting heart rate, sometimes nudging it to beat more than 100 times per minute, a condition called tachycardia. But smoking or consuming lots of caffeine can also do the trick. So can dehydration, fever, anemia, and thyroid disease.
Target Heart Rates
When you work out, are you doing too much or not enough? There’s a simple way to know: Your target heart rate helps you hit the bull’s eye. “We don’t want people to over-exercise, and the other extreme is not getting enough exercise,” says Gerald Fletcher, M.D., a cardiologist and professor in the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine in Jacksonville, Fla.
First Things First
Before you learn how to calculate and monitor your target training heart rate, you have to know your resting heart rate. Your resting heart rate is the number of times your heart beats per minute while it’s at rest. You can check it in the morning after you’ve had a good night’s sleep and before you get out of bed.
According to the National Institute of Health, the average resting heart rate:
- for children 10 years and older, and adults (including seniors) is 60 – 100 beats per minute
- for well-trained athletes is 40 – 60 beats per minute.
Hittin’ the Target
Now you’re ready to determine your target training heart rate. As you exercise, periodically:
- Take your pulse on the inside of your wrist, on the thumb side.
- Use the tips of your first two fingers (not your thumb) to press lightly over the blood vessels on your wrist.
- Count your pulse for 10 seconds and multiply by 6 to find your beats per minute. You want to stay between 50 percent to 85 percent of your maximum heart rate. This range is your target heart rate.
Know Your Numbers
This table shows estimated target heart rates for different ages. Your maximum heart rate is about 220 minus your age.
In the age category closest to yours, read across to find your target heart rate. Heart rate during moderately intense activities is about 50-69% of your maximum heart rate, whereas heart rate during hard physical activity is about 70% to less than 90% of the maximum heart rate.