Maximum heart rate, Hrmax
Maximum heart rate (HRmax) is the highest number of heart beats per minute (bpm) achieved in an all-out effort.
HRmax is individual based on age, heredity and fitness level.
HRmax can be estimated from age, for adults it equals to 220 - age (ACSM*, 1990). The generally accepted error (SD, standard deviation) in the age-predicted formula is + 10-12 bpm, which is due to different inherited characteristics and exercise training. In Polar S-series heart rate monitors, HRmax-p score predicts an individual HRmax value more accurately than the age-based formula.
The most accurate individual HRmax value can be received in a maximal exertion test performed in laboratory conditions by a cardiologist or exercise physiologist. If you are over the age of 40, overweight, have been sedentary for several years, or have a history of heart diseases in your family, clinical testing is recommended.
HRmax is a useful tool in determining training intensities. They are usually expressed as percentages of HRmax.
*American College of Sports Medicine