How do people measure pulse rate?

Do any of you use a pulse rate watch?

I find it really hard to measure my pulse first thing in the morning as it is such a hassle to count the beats and keep an eye on my mobile while counting.

I am thinking of buying a cheap pulse rate watch from ebay, perhaps something like this

Has anyone used something like this, are they any good?

How do you measure your pulse rate?

22 Replies

  • Watch with a second hand works - but only count for 15 secs then multiply by 4.

  • I take my blood pressure also which is handy as most blood pressure meters also take your pulse

  • Do you have an iPhone? If so there is an App on there that does it. It uses its very bright light to "see" the blood pulsing in your finger when you place it over the light.

    I like to use it because I can still be really relaxed :)

  • That app is amazing, thanks for the info ! I've been wondering how to test it as it freaks me out when I feel my pulse haha. I got 75bpm !! I have no idea if that's good or bad !

  • Vickiti, that's clever! I don't have an iphone but my boyfriend does, I'll use his. What is the app called?

  • This Oximeter SM-110 is amazing and just like the ones used by medics - easy, quick and accurate gives oxygen saturation as well as pulse but £22 with free UK delivery

    Search on amazon - Oximeter SM-110

  • editfmrt, this is a finger one, isn't it?

  • Yes it is Ocean. I got it for my sister and it is so easy to slip onto the finger and even she can use it despite her eyesight being so bad.

  • Hi editfmrt, I have now bought this but am finding it difficult to actually work out an average for my pulse as it keeps changing from 70s to 90s in a matter of seconds. I thought it would simply display the average as a set number! Any ideas? thanks

  • Hi ocean. I think it just takes a reading at that moment in time. I make sure I have sat quietly resting for five minutes beforehand and my reading hardly changes unless I move around. Either your one is faulty or perhaps you have a widely fluctuating heart rate.

    Here's a link to check out how they work and another to check reasons for fluctuations

    If your readings are accurate it might be worth having it checked.

  • Tomorrow (and for as long as stocks last - possibly a few days) Lidl have a £14.99 blood pressure machine including pulse. Seems more sense

    The Oximeter (editfmrt's post) looks pretty amazing for what it does.

    I don't think I would be very trusting of a sports watch device from ebay. It might be fine but would rather get something better.


  • Thank you everyone for your replies!

  • I use a blood pressure machine that also measures your heart rate.

    It's great, the Omron M10-IT. I got it from Amazon.


  • I have an Omron and they are very good. My doctor didn't believe that my BP was normally very low as when I saw him it went up an amazing amount. I took my BP machine next time nurse took my BP and asked if she would use mine as well. She did and it was totally synchronised with hers. No more arguments from my doctor!

    Definitely "white coat syndrome"

    It also gives my pulse and when I was going through a bad time with over medication it told me when my heart was irregular. Something else I could show the doc for proof as it keeps the results of past takings.

  • The iPhone App I have is called Free Visual heart rate Monitor. I also use it to help me relax - as it shows a pic of a heart beating in time with your pulse - so I consciously think about slowing it down and adjust breathing etc.

  • Hi Ocean, I used to use a BP monitor that also measured heart rate but recently switched to a pulse oximeter as it is quicker and easier - it is a small device that slips over the end of a finger and measures heart rate and oxygen saturation levels. Health professionals use them, they're accurate and I find it easier for taking my basal heart rate first thing in the morning. You can get one off Amazon or similar for around £20.

  • Hi Lindsey

    I think what you are talking about is same as editfmrt mentioned above?

  • Hi Ocean, yes, same thing!

  • Try trying to count your pulse when you have arrhythmia. Mine goes boomp boomp dash boompty boomp dash boomp! Then try multiplying that by four haha. ....Val

  • I got a pulse oximeter from amazon too. Easy to peg on when half asleep and can be read in the dark.

  • Hi Just a thought, all my cardiologists say that BP machines which incorporate HR ( pulse) are not reliable, they never use them. Also I discovered by extensive enquiries that they are not tested, unlike BP machines which are.


  • Thanks all for your replies!

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