Which do you think is more effective?
There are so many factors that can influence heart rate. Medications, stress, fatigue, not to mention that the formulas they use to figure MHR are not considered accurate. Research has shown that RPE/Talk test to be just as effective as monitors although, I do feel that monitoring has a place in training.
I use and teach students to use every means available to monitor clients. Heart rate is very well defined and the most objective way to determine current intensity. Clients that are taking medication that alters heart rate will still have fairly consistent HR for a particular level of exertion. And I always ask their physician for recommendations on HR with specific mention of their medications.
I also find that HR, RPE and the talk test are very much consistent, especially as the client becomes more accustom to exercise.
Along with these I pay close attention to clients at all times. Learning to read a client’s body language, facial experssions, etc. are great tools for not only safety, but also for clues to use in program design. This has been very effective for me and I get similar feedback from past students who use such methods for training their clients.
I teach this to new students looking to become Fitness Instructors and to Fitness Professionals in my CEC courses. Check out my website if you are interested. www.hawaiifitnessacademy.com I only teach in person as an instructor. I do not think that online or distance learning is as effective as an in-person presentation.
I like the talk test mainly because it makes your client pay attention to what is happening with them during their exercise session. HR is fine, but as the previous answers have suggested, the prediction are based on a statistical regression that is most likely not accurate for all individuals. The talk test is very specifically geared of your client right now.