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    The ABCs of heart rate zones

    Ula Zywer

    Marketing Specialist

    As diverse as sports disciplines are, there is one element they have in common – the importance of heart rate. When it comes to semi-professional or professional sports, athletes use HR (heart rate) monitors on a daily basis and work in harmony with their body. Nowadays, more and more amateur athletes are following their steps and equip themselves with HR monitors and sports tracking systems.

    How to determine one’s heart rate thresholds

    In sports, your heart can work in a few zones divided by thresholds. The most important one is the lactate threshold which indicates the moment when lactate starts increasing rapidly in your blood. There are a few ways to determine in which HR zone you are during a particular moment of the training. There are even some tutorials online on how to calculate it on your own. Some say that you can easily tell if you’re below or over your lactate threshold by making simple tests while running. If you’re able to talk freely, then you’re below it, which means you’re in the aerobic zone. Unfortunately, none of these tests is precise enough to be taken seriously as a basis of good training. Before you start monitoring your heart rate and using sports tracking, you can make an appointment with an expert to conduct a test establishing your HR zones. Your heart rate zones can also be established based on your age and your maximum HR when you’re using sports tracking equipment during your training. If you already know your thresholds, you can set them manually in the system.

    Keep an eye on your heart rate zones

    Why is it so important to keep your effort in a particular HR zone? Because this allows every athlete to improve. It would be impossible to make any progress if you would only do easy exercises, and it would be impossible if you would only train hard. There has to be balance between high intensity and moderate intensity during workouts. The HR values reveal if the training was intense or not.

    How to control your heart rate

    There is one proven way to control your heart rate during training, and that is using a HR monitor. There are basically two types of HR monitors – wrist and chest monitors. The latter is much more precise and is therefore preferred by athletes. HR monitor could also work as a part of the sports tracking set and produce many useful parameters along with GPS tracker.

    What information your HR can provide

    Monitoring your HR is an amazing tool in training. It tells you about the effort you put into your work. But it is much more than that. Any unusual behaviour and unexpected values of your heart rate are a sign that something wrong might be going on. You might be getting ill, or it could signal some sort of injury. Either way, sports tracking and heart rate monitoring go a long way in an athlete’s life. It’s worth a while to consider using such equipment not only if you’re a pro and want the best results. This kind of equipment is also highly recommended for amateur players who want to look after their physique and play injury-free.

    Ula Zywer

    Marketing Specialist

    Former horse rider, currently obstacle runner, at Sonda Sports responsible for Social Media and Content Marketing

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