Atrial Fibrillation (AF) and HRV

AF affects the performance of the heart, especially amongst older, less healthy people. But it also affects a significant percentage of Masters athletes. A large study over a 20 year period shows an interesting correlation between Atrial Fibrillation (AF) and HRV. There are optimum values of HRV and resting heart rate, above and below which the chances of developing AF increase significantly.

Athletes: Fit but unhealthy?

Prof Paul Laursen & Dr Phil Maffetone have consistently preached the message that elite level performance needn’t be at the cost of your long term health. Their recent opinion piece highlighting why is summarised here.

Fat adaptation for exercise – how far can it go?

Despite a great deal of discussion about, and anecdotal evidence to support the benefits of a low carbohydrate high fat (LCHF) diet, there have been few studies examining the degree to which athletes’ metabolisms have been altered to take advantage of this dramatic change in fuel for exercise.

How well does HRV reflect overall health?

Who, what and why? Heart rate variability, or HRV, has long been considered to reflect overall health. Since the 1980s, Professor Steven Porges described HRV as an index not only of stress, but of vulnerability to stress. In other words, the higher someone’s HRV, the...

Can HRV help detect concussion?

Who, what & why Traumatic brain injuries, such as concussion, are unfortunately an occupational hazard in many contact sports. As I write this, sad news was announced today that 23 year old rugby player Lilly Partridge had died following a head injury during...

Can your Morning HRV Predict your Cycling Performance?

Who, what, why? In two previous posts, we summarised studies that showed an almost unbelievable ability for night-time / morning heart rate variability (HRV) to predict the changes in performance of both swimmers and club runners. HRV and Swimming Time Trial Results...

We need your data!

Since we introduced subjective scales for sleep, fatigue, soreness, stress, mood & diet in ithlete v3.0 at the beginning of the year, we have been intrigued with the idea of seeing how these factors relate to changes in our daily HRV. We included a facility in the...

How accurate are consumer pulse sensors?

Not very – according to a review recently undertaken by CNET. Senior Editor Sharon Profis collaborated with Cardiologist Dr Jon Zaroff to compare some popular health tracker devices to medical ECG equipment at rest and during treadmill exercise at quite high...

Energy drinks and HRV

A short summary of Dr Mike T. Nelson’s paper on the impact of a Monster energy drink on heart rate, heart rate variability (HRV) and ride time to exhaustion.

HRV after exercise: implications for training prescription

Introduction Researchers Jamie Stanley & Jonathan Peake from the University of Queensland, with the guidance of heart rate variability (HRV) sports research supremo Martin Buchheit have put together an important review article with over 120 references. The paper...

Validating the new ithlete Finger Sensor

Although ECG signals have been the gold standard for heart rate variability (HRV) due to the sharp, easily identified peak of the R wave, there has been a desire amongst researchers and practitioners to find a more convenient alternative.  The pulse sensor, of the...

Breathing and heart rate variability: The Research

The impact of breathing on different HRV measurements: implications for monitoring athletes Who, what & why? It has long been known that breathing affects heart rate variability (HRV). Many studies have tracked HRV in athletes – some have used free (spontaneous)...

Measurement of HRV

Early measurement of HRV Although irregular heart rhythms and their potential for predicting health outcomes had been noticed by Chinese medics all the way back to 400 AD, it really took the Nobel prize winning invention of the Electro Cardio Graph (ECG or EKG) by...

Heart Rate Variability Monitoring in Team Sports

by Chris Black & Ben Stirling Ben Stirling and Chris Black both work in professional rugby league and have a particular interest in monitoring and physical performance, both in terms of injury prevention and strength and conditioning. Monitoring in Team Sports As...

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