Maximum Heart Rate:

Your max heart rate is used as a tool to determine your target heart rate.  It is also the maximum your heart should beat during exercise.  That is why it is important to monitor your heart rate during exercise!

Resting Heart Rate:

This is your heart rate when you are at rest.  For example, when you are sitting on the couch watching TV or sleeping.  The lower this number the more efficient your heart is!

Heart Rate Reserve:

This is a term used to describe the difference between a person’s measured max heart rate and their resting heart rate.  This number can change in two (2) ways:

  • Your cardiovascular system becomes more fit and therefore, you resting heart rate drops which increases your heart rate reserve or;
  • As you get older your max heart rate decreases which decreases your heart rate reserve.

Target Heart Rate:

This is the beats per minute that your heart should be exerting during exercise.  If you are not meeting this number then you are not working hard enough and if your heart rate is why above this number then you are working too hard!

Cite this article as: William Anderson (Schoolworkhelper Editorial Team), "Heart Rate and Terms," in SchoolWorkHelper, 2019,

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