Due to power concerns, Apple Watch does not monitor your heart rates continually.
Seizing an opportunity, iOS developer Zach Simone came up with an app called HeartMonitor. It uses the heart rate sensor in your Apple Watch to record custom sessions of heart rate activity and store your BPMs in the Health app, without actually starting an active workout.
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The app is trying to fill a niche for people who would start a workout right before a major event like an important exam or public speak so they could analyze their BPM data later.
For those wondering, HeartMonitor will not add unwanted data to your activity rings.
— David Smith (@_DavidSmith) October 23, 2015
Sessions captured through HeartMonitor have minimal impact on your activity rings. The app gives you the frequent heart rate readings of a workout session, but without having to start an active workout and have your activity rings added to.
Taking advantage of Apple’s HealthKit framework, HeartMonitor stores your BPMs in the Health app on your iPhone, allowing you to easily visualize trends and see your resting heart rate. HeartMonitor works its magic by starting a special workout—a workaround necessitated by the fact that developers have limited access to raw heart rate sensor data on the watch.
Start and end your heart rate tracking session in the watch app
After installing its watchOS component via Apple’s companion Watch app, open HeartMonitor and tap Start to begin a tracking session. You will see the current beats per minute on your watch display, plus your average heart rate and the elapsed time.
The accompanying iPhone app lets you see detailed data such as session length, the range of your beats per minute and your highest and lowest heart rates, plus visualize trends and rename sessions so you remember what you recorded.
Of course, your heart rate monitoring sessions can be optionally shared with friends.
Check out a detailed summary of your heart tracking sessions on iPhone
Keep in mind that Apple Watch’s heart rate sensor consumes power so try not to constantly track your heart rate or the battery won’t make it through the day.
Apple Watch is currently incapable of monitoring your heart beat on a continuous basis and that’s precisely why Apple’s not yet included a dedicated heart rate tracking mode in watchOS.
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Also, Apple Watch ships with the built-in Heart Rate app that stores data in the Health database though it doesn’t seem to capture your heart rate as frequently as this app.
Naming sessions makes it easy to track the most intense readings
Summing up, HeartMonitor lets you record, save and analyze your resting heart rate for short periods of time although can use the app in a number of other situations, too.
Zach recommends using it before giving a public speech and in other tense situations, such as during the dying moments of a football game or while watching a horror movie.
BPMs that HeartMonitor captures are stored in the Health app
If you like HeartMonitor, you may also like the HeartWatch app which also alerts you about high heart rates and gives you additional data such as calories burned and more.
HeartMonitor is completely free and contains no advertising or In-App Purchases.