2010 Student Research Conference:
23rd Annual Student Research Conference

Postural Effects on Heart Rate Variability Detected Using Electrocardiography
Alex J. Francisco*, David Lau, and Aaron G. Theby
Dr. Frederic Shaffer, Faculty Mentor

The present within-subjects study examined how subtle postural changes affect measures of heart rate variability obtained from an EKG sensor. Fifty-one undergraduates, 18 to 23 years of age, participated in this study. To gauge heart rate variability, measurements were taken for EKG, respiration rate, and blood pressure. Participants were stabilized for 5 minutes sitting quietly with eyes open and no postural instructions, and then were randomly assigned to one of six orders involving sitting upright, sitting with a forward slouch, and sitting with a backward slouch. Sitting position had no effect on Planned Comparisons pNN50, SDRR was greater when sitting with a forward slouch, and HR Max HR Min was greater when sitting with a forward slouch than a backward slouch. Diastolic blood pressure, but not systolic, was higher when sitting upright. We recommend that clinicians and researchers standardize sitting position when monitoring blood pressure and heart rate variability.

Keywords: Heart Rate Variability, EKG, Sitting Position, Blood Pressure, Respiration Rate, Upright, Slouch

Topic(s):Psychology

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 29-3
Location: MG 1000
Time: 10:00

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