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February 12, 2016

Heart Rate Variability — A Coach's Review of the Uses and Value of HRV Data in Athletes

The human heart beats at a non-constant rate; heart rate variability (HRV) is a statistical measurement of heart rate irregularity. Originally used as a predictor of survival after acute medical emergencies, the application of HRV has rapidly expanded, and it has now one of the most studied areas of physiological response to exercise. HRV has been shown in numerous studies to positively correlate with athletic performance and training adaptation, and to negatively correlate with risk of overtraining and injuries. This document provides coaches with an overview of HRV with a focus on its utility as an athlete training tool.

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Emily Capodilupo

Before joining WHOOP in 2013 as the first full-time employee and first scientist, Emily studied Neurobiology at Harvard University and studied circadian biology in the Analytical and Modeling Unit of the Division of Sleep Medicine at Harvard's Brigham and Women's hospital. As a runner and acrobat, Emily knows first hand the importance of sleep and recovery for peak performance. At WHOOP, she blends this personal experience with the sleep and analytics knowledge developed at Harvard to empower athletes to make intelligent, data-driven decisions.

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