How to have Apple Watch automatically pause and resume your runs

Apple Watch nike plus running woman

Among a myriad of varied health and fitness focused features, watchOS makes pausing and resuming your runs in the stock Workout app a frictionless experience, based on the inclusion of a new feature which taps into built-in sensors to determine when you start and stop moving. This new feature doesn’t require a dedicated GPS so it’ll work on every Apple Watch model.

Even better, you can enable it with just one tap, here’s how.

How to have Apple Watch automatically pause/resume workouts

1) Open the Watch app on your paired iPhone and navigate to the My Watch → Workout section.

2) Slide the Running Auto Pause switch to the ON position.

“When this is on, indoor and outdoor running workouts will automatically pause when you stop moving and resume when you start moving,” notes Apple.


If you’d rather manually pause/resume your runs, set the toggle to the OFF position and simultaneously press the Digital Crown and the Side button on your watch while in the Workout app. Please note that the shortcut clashes with screenshot-taking functionality so pressing the two buttons to pause/resume your run will also take a screenshot.


To prevent that from happening, watchOS 3 by default disabled screenshot taking.

But don’t you worry, you can re-enable screenshots in the Watch app on your paired iPhone: go to My Watch → General and toggle Enable Screenshots on or off.