Firstbeat are leaders in Heart Rate Variability (HRV) monitoring and analysis. Their technology underpins hundreds of smart watches and devices, including Suunto, Garmin, Huawei, Samsung, Sony etc. Firstbeat technology is used by over 1,000 elite sports teams worldwide and over 7,000 corporate clients.
How did we achieve amazing media reviews for Firstbeat?
The first task was to educate journalists on exactly what HRV is, and why it is important. The time difference between two consecutive heartbeats changes from beat to beat. This variation is called Heart Rate Variability.
What exactly is HRV?
A research breakthrough by Firstbeat’s founders realised it is possible to use HRV to map stress, recovery and exercise performance. HRV is affected by factors such as stress, sleep quality, hormones, physical activity, food intake, and alcohol. The lower your HRV, the more effect stress has on your body, negatively impacting your wellbeing. A high HRV is when your heart rate changes drastically, and quickly, upon varying stimulus like stress or adrenaline. This means you can return from these states faster too, your body is responding and recovering quickly from ‘stressing’ stimuli.
A high HRV is associated with better quality sleep, quicker recovery times, lower stress levels and a general better wellbeing.
Education is key
We crafted a press release to explain exactly what HRV is. This included how it was founded, and how monitoring/analysis can help improve wellbeing, reduce stress and improve sleep quality.
Then we invited journalists to trial the Lifestyle Assessment. This is provided by Firstbeat and their corporate partners. It includes a 3-5 day assessment in which you wear their HRV monitoring device for 24 hours a day. We offered journalists the option of a face-to-face, or over the phone review.
The review sessions are where the journalist’s lives are changed. It gives insight into exactly the effect their work, lifestyle, late nights and drinking behaviour has on their body.
The Telegraph journalist Jack Rear said: “And that’s the reason my lifestyle assessment has been stuck in my head for weeks… seeing it all laid bare in my own life gave me the motivation to take control of what’s going on in my body and work to improve it.”
He also found when he was late to a meeting and had to power walk to get there, he actually got a moderate effect on his heart. “A nice reminder that not all exercise has to take place in a gym”. The final revelation came about alcohol, when on a pub crawl with his father. “On the preceding two days I’d shown a strong ability to recover and relax even while working, drinking ensured my body was unable to relax or recover at all. Even asleep in bed, I didn’t recover. Over the course of the day, my heart rate was on average 14 beats per minute more than the previous day.”
Everyone who has a Lifestyle Assessment learns something new about themselves. Some people may require drastic lifestyle changes to improve their health, others only minor. When I did my Lifestyle Assessment, I learned that I am in a stressed state during my 2-3 hours of Sunday evening weekly meal prep. If I did this too close to bedtime, my body would remain in the stressed state during the initial phase of my sleep. I never knew I was ‘stressed’ I thought I was relaxed, but I wasn’t. My personal take-away was that if I simply did my meal prep earlier in the day, my body would have sufficient time to unwind before I went to sleep.
We achieved over 53 articles for Firstbeat, and over 20 recorded journalist trials in the sports, tech, trade and consumer press. We successfully educated journalists on what HRV is, and why Firstbeat are the leaders in the field.
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