Wearable Motion-based Heart-rate at Rest: A Workplace Evaluation


Javier Hernandez

Javier Hernandez

Hernandez J., McDuff D., Quigley K., Maes P., and Picard R., "Wearable Motion-based Heart-rate at Rest: A Workplace Evaluation," Journal of Biomedical and Health Informatics, 2018.


This work studies the feasibility of using low-cost motion sensors to provide opportunistic heart rate assessments from ballistocardiographic signals during restful periods of daily life. Three wearable devices were used to capture peripheral motions at specific body locations (head, wrist and trouser pocket) of 15 participants during five regular workdays each. Three methods were implemented to extract heart rate from motion data and their performance was compared to those obtained with an FDA-cleared device. With a total of 1358 hours of naturalistic sensor data, our results show that providing accurate heart rate estimations from peripheral motion signals is possible during relatively “still” moments. In our real-life workplace study, the head-mounted device yielded the most frequent assessments (22.98% of the time under 5 beats per minute of error) followed by the smartphone in the pocket (5.02%) and the wrist-worn device (3.48%). Most importantly, accurate assessments were automatically detected by using a custom threshold based on the device jerk. Due to the pervasiveness and low-cost of wearable motion sensors, this work demonstrates the feasibility of providing opportunistic large-scale low-cost samples of resting heart rate. 

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