Take your pulse

Taking your pulse is a quick and easy way to monitor your heart rate. It’s also a great way to check for signs of atrial fibrillation. Follow the steps below to take your pulse.

1. Find a quiet place

Find a quiet place to sit and relax, free from noise and distractions.

2. Find your pulse

Place the tips of your index, second, and third fingers on your wrist below your thumb at the base of your hand. Press lightly, and feel carefully for your pulse.


3. Measure your pulse rate and rhythm

When you’ve found your pulse, use your watch or a clock with a second hand to count the number of beats you feel for 15 seconds. You should also tap your foot along with the rhythm of your pulse.

4. Calculate your pulse rate

Multiply the number of beats you counted by 4. This is your heart rate measured in beats per minute.

5. Review your results

A normal pulse rate is between 60 and 100 beats per minute. And a normal pulse rhythm should be steady. If at any point you felt your pulse rate fall out of rhythm with your foot tapping, you may have an irregular heartbeat—a sign of atrial fibrillation.

Learn how to take your pulse with Archie Manning.