HRV apps

There are a number of iOS apps that purport to measure heart rate variability (HRV). All of them provide advice based on HRV readings. The advice can be more focused on cardiovascular training or more broadly geared toward general wellbeing.

  • Elite HRV (free, in-app purchases, 4.5 stars on 1.08K users). After I signed up, I was able to connect my Polar H10 heart rate sensor and quickly take a 1-minute HRV reading. Nice. The app allows you to tag your HRV readings. However, integration with Apple Health is not good. It seems it reads some data from Apple Health but does not write your HRV value there. That’s kind of useless for use with apps like Wattson Blue and Welltory, so I stopped using Elite HRV.
  • HeartAnalyzer (free, in-app purchases, 4.5 stars on 4.16K users) uses the Apple Watch. ‘Nuff said.
  • HRV4Training ($9.99, 4 stars on 96 users). Allows you to take an HRV reading using a Bluetooth-connected heart rate sensor. You can configure it so that HRV4Training will write your HRV readings to Apple Health. It only allows for one HRV reading per day and assumes that you are taking the reading in the morning. You can tag your HRV readings in all kinds of ways, although they almost all require manual data entry. (They do not pull data from many other apps, even where the data is naturally available in other apps.)
    • Alcohol (you set, none/a little/too much)
    • Current physical condition (you set via a slider)
    • Diet (you type in the name or description each time)
    • Fatigue (you set via a slider)
    • Illness (you set, yes/no)
    • Injury (you type in the name each time)
    • Lifestyle (you set via a slider, from unstable to routine)
    • Location (automatically set but adjustable, populates altitude/temperature/humidity/wind)
    • Mental energy (mood, you set via a slider)
    • Muscle soreness (you set via a slider)
    • Sleep quality (you set via a slider)
    • Sleep start/end (HRV4Training takes a guess; you edit)
    • Supplements (you type in the names each time)
    • Training distance (pulled from Strava)
    • Training duration (pulled from Strava)
    • Training intensity (pulled from Strava; adjustable)
    • Training main sport (pulled from Strava; adjustable)
    • Training performance (you set via a slider)
    • Training rated perceived exertion (you set via a slider)
    • Training stress score (TSS, pulled from Training Peaks(?))
    • Traveling (you set, yes/no)
  • Wattson Blue (free, in-app purchases) uses the “finger over the camera” method. However, you can manually enter values to get advice about training intensity.
  • Welltory (free, in-app purchases) uses the “finger over the camera” method. I must say, it does look like an interesting app, though, in terms of integrating data from all kinds of other apps to give a holistic picture of wellness.

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