Design a personal heart monitoring system

Programme the system using the accelerometer and LED display

This is one of a series of resources to support the use of the BBC micro:bit in Design and Technology lessons

There are many reasons to monitor heart rate. For example:

  • There are 2.7 million people in the UK currently suffering from heart problems. The quicker these problems can be found and treated the better the chance of a full recovery.
  • Athletes measure their heart rate during training to ensure that they are training in their optimum physical range.

In this unit, learners will use the BBC micro:bit to develop a prototype for a personal heart monitoring system.


In this activity, learners will develop their programmable system using the BBC micro:bit’s inbuilt accelerometer to detect motion created by the pumping of the heart.



Heart rate monitor - Exploring how the accelerometer function within the BBC micro:bit can be used to measure your heart rate.



  • Activity overview - Design a personal heart monitoring system activity description, teachers' notes and curriculum links
  • Presentation - Using an accelerometer and programming the system
  • Handout - Programming the system
  • Hex programming file - Example programming file using the JavaScript Blocks editor
  • Py programming file - Example programming file using the Python editor
  • Audio - Connected health - Podcast produced by Fun Kids Radio as part of the Techno Mum series