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The New Apple Watch Series 4 Has Some Fun Upgraded Health and Wellness Features

Photo: Apple / Background: Shutterstock.com

Apple has set the bar crazy high after announcing what's to come with their new iPhone X models and Apple Watch. For starters, they debuted three new iPhones that are being added to the family: the iPhone XS, the iPhone XS Max, and the iPhone XR. But, it's the latest upgrade to the fitness capabilities with the new Apple Watch Series 4—with features you didn't know you needed until now—that really stand out. Each of the new devices is available for preorder September 14 and available for sale a week later. Still not sure you need to update your beloved Apple Watch Series 2? Here are some of the coolest tricks from the new version that Apple is calling "the guardian of your health." (Related: ClassPass Launched a Free Audio Training App Called ClassPass Go)

It detects when you've fallen.

ICDK, falls are one of the leading cause of injuries, and no, they don't just happen to your grandparents. From an unexpected sports injury to a surprisingly slippy surface, things could take a bad turn real quick. That's why the Series 4 comes with a built-in accelerometer, which detects the manner in which you're moving forward, and a gyroscope, which detects stability. Together, these mechanisms help determine when a user has taken a fall, prompting the watch to automatically ask if you need emergency assistance.

If it detects immobility for 60 seconds or more, the Series 4 will send out the user's information and location to emergency contacts and responders to make sure you get the help you need as quickly as possible. All good? Just tap the notification to alert Apple that you're fine. This is an awesome added sense of security when you're heading out on a trail run or another potentially hazardous situation.  (Related: 8 Essential Safety Tips Every Trail Runner Should Know)

It can act as an electrocardiogram (ECG).

The Series 4 has a new FDA-approved heart-rate sensor which can administer an ECG that you can later share with your doctor. To perfect their sensor, Apple conducted a study in 2017 with Stanford Medicine to learn more about irregular heartbeats and how users could benefit from having an ECG on tap. The sensor can also detect if your heart rate has increased or decreased more than usual (as it begins to learn your "normal" rhythm) and looks out for signs of atrial fibrillation (AFib). Currently, AFib is the leading cause of stroke in the U.S. and is responsible for approximately 130,000 deaths and 750,000 hospitalizations a year, according to the Apple study. Plus, many people don't have symptoms before experiencing AFib, so having a heart-rate sensor to detect warning signs has a huge potential to save lives. (This wouldn't be the first time an Apple Watch heart-rate monitor saved a life, actually. Plus, the watch was even responsible for saving a woman and her baby after a car crash.) 

 

Photo: Apple/Background:Shutterstock.com

You can make the watch face all health everything.

Until now, it was a bit of a nuisance to stop your workout and scroll through your Apple Watch to get the health-related information you're looking for. But now, new options are just a swipe away from the watch face, so all your health stats will be accessible with just one touch. Plus, with a bigger display and more customizable graphics, you can clearly identify what stats are most important to you.

It offers a built-in breathing guide.

Apple's meditation app called Breathe is now available as a watch face, so taking a moment to center yourself is more convenient than ever with this screensaver of sorts. The beautiful new graphics will guide you through three breathing exercises, tying mindfulness with physical well-being. Although this was an already existing app that could be downloaded to the iPhone or the Apple Watch, it is now part of the watch as a face, making it so much easier to quickly chill TF out when needed. (Related: 3 Breath Work Techniques That Can Improve Your Health)

 

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