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The 7 Places to Check a Pulse

by
author image Bill Dowis
Bill Dowis was the founding editor of "The 316 Journal," a theology and poetry journal. He covers health, fitness, food and photography, among other topics. Based in southern New Jersey, Dowis also works in banking.
The 7 Places to Check a Pulse
The 7 Places to Check a Pulse Photo Credit Rafael Suarez/Demand Media

The pulse is most commonly checked on the wrist or neck, but there are other places on the body where a pulse can be examined. The pulse can be felt anywhere an artery runs close to the surface of the skin. Use two fingers to apply slight pressure to the site and you should be able to feel the pulse. When you find your pulse, count the number of beats for a minute, or count for 30 seconds and multiply by two.

Wrist

The 7 Places to Check a Pulse
Photo Credit Rafael Suarez/Demand Media

Run your fingers along the outside of the wrist, just under the thumb. This is the position of the artery that runs from your heart to your hands. Along with the neck, the wrist is the best place to check the pulse since the artery runs close to the skin and the bones create a firm place to feel the heart rate.

Neck

The 7 Places to Check a Pulse
Photo Credit Rafael Suarez/Demand Media

Apply pressure to the side of the neck, just under the back of the jaw. This is the location of the artery sending blood from your heart to your head and brain. This is another easy-to-reach place to check your heart rate.

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Knee

The 7 Places to Check a Pulse
Photo Credit Rafael Suarez/Demand Media

Check behind the knee. This artery sends blood to your lower extremities. It can be difficult to find the pulse in this area. If finding the pulse here is too difficult, go to another location on the body.

Groin

The 7 Places to Check a Pulse
Photo Credit Rafael Suarez/Demand Media

Find your pulse where the leg meets the pelvis. The artery here sends blood to your lower extremities. The amount of muscle and fat in this area can make it difficult to find the pulse.

Temple

The 7 Places to Check a Pulse
Photo Credit Rafael Suarez/Demand Media

Press firmly to the side of and behind the eye. The thin layer of fat and muscle usually allows for the pulse to be easily felt at this location.

Foot

The 7 Places to Check a Pulse
Photo Credit Rafael Suarez/Demand Media

Check along the top and inner side of the foot. Pressing against the bones in the foot should reveal your pulse rate.

Elbow

The 7 Places to Check a Pulse
Photo Credit Rafael Suarez/Demand Media

Test your pulse rate on the Inside bend of the elbow. Fully extend your arm and feel inside the bend of your elbow, close to your body.

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References

Demand Media