The Apple Watch Can Now Be Used For Stress Monitoring: According to a recent study, the accuracy of the heart rate sensor on the Apple Watch makes it possible for users to track their stress levels.
Fortunately, Apple’s watch already measures a crucial stress-related parameter that third-party apps are already leveraging while we wait to see if Apple launches a native stress monitoring experience.
Heart rate variability (HRV) monitoring is a feature that Apple Watch already has and is a useful measure to understand and follow. Apple, unlike Fitbit and other rivals, does not use the data for native stress level tracking.
What is HRV, and how can Apple Watch and iPhone users monitor it?
The Cleveland Clinic defines HRV as follows:
“The flexibility of your heart shows how adaptive your body is. Your body can often adjust to numerous modifications if your heart rate is highly varied. People with high heart rate variability tend to be happy and less worried.
According to a recent study discovered by MyHealthyApple (via MacRumors), Apple Watch is accurate enough to track stress. Participants in the study provided six ECG readings each day to obtain the HRV measurements used to determine their stress levels.
The “stress” models generally had a high level of precision but a poorer recall. The “no stress” models generally worked well, with a recall rate that was often over 60%. The results were rather encouraging, given the extremely brief ECG measurements taken here compared to the norm and the characteristics of real-world data.
The study added that the Apple Watch’s ability to monitor exercise, sleep, and heart rate in addition to heart rate could improve the experience of stress monitoring.
There are a couple of excellent options if you’re interested in using Apple Watch to understand your stress levels better.
First, open the Health app on your iPhone and select Browse > Heart > Heart Rate Variability to view your HRV history. The 6M or year trend should be examined. Generally, an upward trend can indicate less stress, whereas a descending trend can indicate more stress.
These are three excellent apps to try out if you want to use HRV regularly to understand your stress better. The first two are more concerned with stress and fitness; however, they all aid in understanding daily stress.