Health Check Heart Monitor: When to use it: Use when you are not riding. It is handheld. How to use it: If the horse is dry, then spread some electrode gel on the textured rectangle parts of the monitor that go against the horse. If the horse is sweaty or wet from bath, you should scrape off the dripping water, and then apply the monitor to the horse’s side. Press the monitor lightly on the horse’s side, near his left elbow for 8 – 10 seconds. The monitor will calculate the horse’s heartbeat based on that 8 – 10 second time. You will see the readout on the wristwatch that comes with the monitor. The watch needs to be within 3 feet of the monitor to read the output from the monitor. You’ll know that the watch is working if the heart icon on the watch is blinking. Battery life: The watch batteries last for 18 months. Use a qualified jeweler or send the watch back to Polar for a new battery. Don’t try to replace it yourself because you’ll harm the waterproof nature of the watch. The monitor batteries last for 7 years. You can send the monitor back to Polar for a new battery, but most people just but a new monitor after 7 years. When to use: Use to measure horse’s heartrate when he is standing in one place. Most people use it to measure the horse’s resting heartrate first thing in the morning, or to measure the horse’s heartrate after he works and he is standing still. Resting heartrate for most horses is 25 – 35 beats per minute. Polar recommends measuring the horse’s resting heartrate for 5 days in a row to establish that horse’s baseline normal heartrate. Then you can tell if the horse isn’t feeling well if you measure his heartrate one day and it’s more than 10 beats per minute above normal. Handy storage hint: Wrap the watch around the handle of the monitor so you don’t lose the watch.