Top Tips & Pro Tips for getting the most out of Heart Watch


All new HeartWatch 4 available 20 March. 

It's a free update to all existing HeartWatch customers. 

Sleeping With The Watch
If you are interested in tracking your heart rate while you sleep, click here for everything you need to know

Known Issues

Version 1.1
There is one known issue in version 1.1. The optional notifications for high & low readings are not enabled even when you enable them. Jeez. This is fixed in the next version which will be out soon. 

Version 1.0
There were 2 issues in version 1.0. Version 1.1 is now available on the App Store. Click here to upgrade

1. If you leave the app and come back in and you see a screen that looks like this:

This is a known bug that has now been fixed and an update submitted. It will happen if you go into the detail view of your heart rate, then, instead of pressing back to go back to the HeartWatch main screen, instead, you press the iPhone home button to exit, and then, you re-enter the app again after a time of longer than 2 minutes has elapsed. 

The current fix to this is to force close the app by double pressing your iPhone home button and swiping up to close. Once you go back in it will be fine again. 

2. 24 hr time format is not supported for some European countries. It always show as AM/PM. This has also been fixed in the forthcoming update. 

Health Permissions
Heart Watch reads your heart rate data via your iPhone's Health Data Store. When you first launch the app it will ask for your permission. It's important that you provide your ok for all this information as it is required for all the required calculations. If you were accidentally a bit quick doing this and missed granting permissions, then you can do this at any time by going into iPhone Settings, Privacy, Health, selecting Heart Watch and turning the required permissions on. 

Waking Heart Rate
Studies have shown that your waking heart rate is an important measure of your basic fitness level and a strong predictor of your cardiovascular health. 

How to Capture It
Whilst still in bed, put your Apple Watch on to your wrist & enter its PIN. This will trigger an immediate heart rate reading in the background on your Apple Watch. However, reaching across and moving around might cause your heart rate to elevate slightly. The way around this is to flick up the heart rate glance on your Watch and then lie still and relax for about 30 seconds. This will capture more accurate readings. Close the glance and that's it. You're done. When the app later analyses your heart rate, it will review and consolidate this information automatically to provide a more accurate waking heart rate. 

What It Means
A normal adult range is from 60 to 80 beats per minute. Athletes can have a range between 35 to 50 beats per minute. Generally speaking, the better shape you are in, the fewer beats per minute. 

Having a high waking heart rate can be an indication of poor cardiovascular health and can indicate things such as hardening of the arteries and restrictions in the diameter of your blood vessels. If your waking heart rate is over 80bpm, then you should consult your medical practitioner.

For athletes, monitoring the variance in waking heart rate can be useful in monitoring overtraining. 

Regular Heart Rate
Regular heart rate is a term used in Heart Watch to isolate the readings your watch takes in the background every ten minutes from those readings you take during a workout. 

Workout readings are more likely performed under physical stress and an elevated heart rate. By isolating regular heart rate from workout heart rate, Heart Watch can present a more accurate picture of your day to day heart health.

In Heart Watch Settings, you can customise which colours are associated with your heart's beats per minute (BPM) reading during presentation of regular heart rate readings. 

Workout Heart Rate
When you start and end a workout on your Apple Watch, Heart Watch will use this information to isolate and present this heart rate information in a separate section. Each workout will appear under its own summary tile and all workouts for a day consolidated under a zonal summary. 

What It Means
For workouts, the zones are based on percentage of max heartbeat which is very popular with “zonal” style training. 
Percentages are used to give a common reference over different ages & levels of fitness and to allow individual adjustment based on training level.

Default zones: 
  • Aqua = moderate zone (50-60% of max) - won’t increase fitness/strength/endurance but good for health, recovery, warm ups, cool downs etc.
  • Green =  fat burning zone (60-70% of max) - lowish effort, predominantly uses fat for energy. 
  • Yellow = aerobic fitness zone (60-70% of max) - builds functional capacity, lung capacity, respiratory rate, numbers & size of blood vessels etc, metabolises fats & carbs around a 50/50 rate. 
  • Red = anaerobic threshold / intense zone (80-90% of max) - getting faster & fitter via more intensity. 
  • Bright Red = extremely intense (90-100% of max) - full on effort for short bursts only during interval training. Purely anaerobic.

In Heart Watch Settings, you can customise how the various heart rate zones are presented in the workout section. Each colour can be associated with a percentage of your maximum heart rate. Your maximum heart rate itself may also be changed, by default, it is based on your age. 

Notification can be enabled in the settings section of the app. You can customise which ones you would like to see. It important to understand that your iPhone encrypts all your health information, and prevents access by any application unless your phone is unlocked. Heart Watch will process this information in the background any time your phone is unlocked, no matter what application you are using, and once done, will give you any notifications that you've asked for. So, as long as you use your iPhone you will get any notifications you've asked for without having to specifically open the Heart Watch app. 

Occasionally you will experience a minor delay while your Watch writes health data to your phone and the health store does its updates. These are generally minor. You can pull the Heart Watch summary screen down at any time to get the latest update.