ithlete for Coaches
Watch our HRV App Video
Training and competition require precise loading, finally the use of Heart Rate Variability (HRV) monitoring is practical, accurate and inexpensive with ithlete.
If you're coaching in a team setting why not visit our blog to read about the new the ithlete Team App to automate multi-player monitoring?
Injures can make or break a season, for years enormous resources and efforts have been invested in to the prevention and reduction non-contact injuries.
Many organizations have found great systems and methodologies to help fight the injury bug, but without clear objective data on the physiological recovery status, teams still have a long way to go. The ithlete system works with existing injury reduction strategies, directing both sports medicine and performance training.
|ithlete Guide to Training with HRVUnderstand more about over-training and training with heart rate variability.
Download the Guide
Convenient, Informative, Inexpensive: ithlete
Measure and Interpret HRV in Only 60 Seconds!
Convenient and user-friendly, ithlete enables athletes to measure HRV themselves for the first time. Where previous systems confined measurement to the lab athletes can now take readings using their Smartphone or tablet device. This offers the significant advantage of taking readings before external influences such as caffeine intake or stress take effect, increasing the consistency of measurement.
Sharing ithlete HRV Data
Results can be sent to the coach or team doctor at the click of a button, via email or Dropbox, facilitating remote monitoring. This is a great feature for coaches during off season and when athletes are travelling.
The data individual athletes share with the coach can be analysed in a number of ways including;
- Individually – how well rested, recovered and ready is this athlete? Why? How might training need to be adjusted to reflect this?
- Cumulatively – how has the team as a whole responded to given situations? What HRV trends has a particular training session caused? Are peaks and tapers on track ahead of big competitions?
- Graphical or numeric format – ithlete data is exported in CSV format, compatible with most data analysis programs, including Microsoft Excel. Alternatively coaches can sign up to Sports Data Hub to automatically import and analyse ithlete data for the whole team.
Individualise Training Programmes and Increase Performance
The fine line between overtraining and being under prepared is a difficult one for coaches and athletes. Coaches have an array of variables to manipulate, but often it comes down how much, how hard, and when. What is optimal often requires experimentation through trial and error or being too conservative. Now ithlete removes the guesswork and increases the precision of training loads. With windows of opportunity, sometimes as little as one season, hanging in the balance, coaches can’t afford to make mistakes in preparation.
The app displays a colour coded graph of your HRV score as well as a train/train easy/rest recommendation. A high reading combined with a normal resting pulse is good news – you can train hard that day. A low reading means you should take it easy, providing you with a guilt free rest or lighter intensity day; and while your body is in recovery mode, your muscles are busy getting stronger. A weekly and monthly change score displays your short term progress whilst total progress over time is conveniently displayed in both graphical and numerical format, enabling athletes to prepare for events and continue to increase fitness and performance.
Combine with Subjective Measurements
Regardless of the sport or size of the team, capturing HRV scores can shed valuable insight to what is happening in the recovery status of the athlete. The ithlete system works seamlessly with conventional training logs all the way to high end elite systems found in major sports leagues and Olympic levels.
Users can input training loads allowing athletes and coaches to correlate this directly with HRV scores. Inappropriate loading often can over train the most conditioned athlete when life stressors, travel, poor nutrition, and poor rest and sleep sabotage training programs. HRV will identify athletes overall health, response to training and lifestyle stressors and readiness to train. Adding comments and notes to the data in ithlete enables retrospective data analysis to take account of these factors.
How ithlete Works
A signal is sent from a chest strap monitor to a small receiver which attaches to your smart phone or tablet, providing the ithlete HRV app with an accurate measurement of your current heart rate variability. Unlike morning pulse, which is too crude to use as a sole marker of fatigue, the HRV score from ithlete is a precise number that measures the gap between peaks of the QRS wave from electrocardiograms. The ithlete HRV score is a calculated stress measure, meaning the app uses a proprietary algorithm to ensure the accuracy of recovery status. The app displays a colour coded graph of your HRV score as well as a train/train easy/rest recommendation, enabling you to get the most from your run and avoid injury.
All you need to get started today is a compatible chest strap, ithlete receiver and ithlete HRV app; and all for less than the price of a couple of massage sessions!
Parasympathetic and Sympathetic Balance
The balance of stress and recovery is a delicate line to walk, and measuring HRV with ithlete can help keep intense training at safe levels and optimise progress.
The autonomic nervous system has two branches, the parasympathetic nervous system (PSNS) and the sympathetic nervous system (SNS). The SNS is frequently labelled the system for "fight-or-light", and the PSNS the "rest and digest" system of the body. While the two can be seen as opposing systems at first glance, the SNS and PSNS actually work together with athletes to help stimulate adaptation and promote recovery. Optimal balance is achieved when the parasympathetic system is functioning without impairment, and the sympathetic system is able to produce continual maximal output.
Intentional disruption this homeostasis is part of the training process, commonly known as overreaching, yet only when stress is optimized does it actually make positive change with the body. In other words, surpassing the body’s current capabilities (overreaching) is the only way to progress and develop as an athlete; however without sufficient recovery time before the next session this will lead to non-functional overreaching (NFOR).
Continued non-functional overreaching is not only wasted effort but will also rapidly lead to overtraining. Overtraining can be defined as when the parasympathetic system is impaired from either excess volume or intensity, and often a combination of the two. Overtraining frequently results in injury, illness and diminishing performance and takes anything from weeks to years to recover from. Heart rate variability monitoring with ithlete can help prevent errors in planned overreaching by identifying non-functional overreaching before overtraining occurs.
Sometimes short periods of overreaching are necessary to challenge adaptation, but without precision, the risks of injury and overtraining increase and HRV can help monitor and quantify the training and recovery process. HRV use is not just for training, it's a great tool to help guide sports medicine professionals with the rehabilitation and recovery phase after injury.
The Science and Practice of Heart Rate Variability
Heart Rate Variability is a growing area of study for both health and sports performance, and as technology has improved, the information is more widely available.
For hundreds of years the medical community used the sounds and rhythms of the heart to evaluate the health and vitality of patients. As the technology improved from the 1900s to the early 1960s, heart rate variability was first measured and research in to the relationship between the nervous system and heart began.
Coaches and athletes have used HRV for years to study how training programs interact with individual athletes and teams, but access was limited and the use was very cumbersome and time consuming. With ithlete coaches, sports medicine professionals, and athletes can gather and share valuable data within only a few minutes.
HRV Monthly Chart Explained...
Amber lines occur after intensive workouts and indicate the need for extra rest and recovery. Green lines occur when the body has recovered well. White lines indicate normal HRV levels. Blue lines show the overall trend and moves upwards significantly during the final week of this chart, when little exercise was performed.
Today's HRV number is displayed at the top of the screen. Unlike resting pulse, a higher number is better.
The three coloured indicators at the top right show the amount of change in HRV that has occurred over the past day, week and month. The Daily Change is used as a traffic light for training, whereas the week and month indicators show positive or negative trends.
Get Started Today!
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Chest Strap and Receiver
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Testimonials from Coaches
"Honestly, if you're an athlete, S&C/Performance Coach or serious trainer, you should get yourself ithlete as soon as yesterday. (Twitter)"
Alexander Oviawe, Founder & CEO of Precision Sports Technologies Ltd.
"HRV is a holistic measure of the body with many possible parameters. These measures can be considered as a non-invasive way of assessing the body through time efficient means. The endocrine system..."
Dean Robinson, High Performance Coach, Essendon FC
|Sunday Times Top Apps 02/2012|
|"Check your heart rate with ithlete - a special receiver plugs into the iPhone's headphone socket."|
|"Testing for HRV has just become significantly easier and affordable with the launch of ithlete."|
|» See all Press Articles|