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HeartMath Institute and HeartMath System FAQs

Question: Why “HeartMath”?

Answer: Although the words “heart” and “math” are rarely used together, HeartMath Institute and HeartMath LLC founder Doc Childre felt their combination reflected the two essential aspects of our work.

Heart: The word heart has meaning to almost everyone. When we think of heart, we think not only of the physical heart but also qualities such as wisdom, love, compassion, courage and strength — the higher emotions of human beings.

Math: Math is commonly understood as a comprehensive system of equations, formulas and ways of understanding the world. In the context of HeartMath, it refers to the stepping stones or nuts and bolts of systematically unfolding the qualities of the heart. It also refers to physiological and psychological equations for accessing and developing the heart’s incredible intelligence.

The name HeartMath represents both of these aspects in our exploration of the heart.

Question: What is HeartMath?

Answer: HeartMath is a unique system of rigorous scientific research, validated techniques, leading-edge products and programs and advanced technologies for people interested in personal development and improved emotional, mental and physical health. HeartMath is internationally recognized for practical solutions that can transform the stress of change and uncertainty and build people’s heart coherence and energy reserves.

Question: What is the HeartMath organization?

Answer: We’re three organizations, one system. The HeartMath System of performance enhancement, stress relief and mental and emotional self-management lies at the core of three companies with complementary missions: the HeartMath Institute (HMI), an innovative nonprofit research and education organization; HeartMath LLC, a cutting-edge performance and consulting firm providing unique programs, products and technology to boost performance, productivity and health while reducing stress; and Quantum Intech, a licensing and development company that focuses on biometric and emotion-regulated technology products.

Question: Why did you change your name from Institute of HeartMath to HeartMath Institute?  

Answer: We made this change because most people refer to us as HeartMath Institute. They also search for and write checks to HeartMath Institute, so we filed a doing-business-as amendment.

Question: Who uses HeartMath?

Answer: The HeartMath System of techniques and technologies is used by hundreds of thousands of individuals worldwide, thousands of health professionals and hundreds of companies, health-care systems, educational institutions and government agencies. We deliver services and training programs to organizations and all levels of staff, including leadership and management-team training and employee wellness and professional development programs. Train-the-trainer programs commonly are provided to expand the HeartMath program rapidly through an organization. We offer consumers and health professionals a variety of products and programs, including emWave® interactive technology, one-on-one coaching sessions, phone-based, e-training and audio programs, e-booklets and books.

In the HeartMath Institute’s educational training programs, we work with educators, students, and administrative staff, and we certify educators to integrate HeartMath programs into their student curricula.

Question: Is HeartMath’s founder Doc Childre a doctor?

Answer: No. Doc is his actual name, passed on to him from his father. Doc is a self-educated researcher and author who has dedicated his life to caring for people through his work and the development of the HeartMath System. He founded the nonprofit HeartMath Institute in 1991. His goal was to research and develop a simple, step-by-step system of scientifically validated tools everyone could use to help them listen to and follow their hearts as a source of intelligence. That research has yielded important new understanding about heart-brain communication and the impact of emotion on health, performance, and productivity. Doc has assembled a team of world-class researchers, doctors and health professionals to research and validate the HeartMath System. He has more than 20 years of experience in developing and introducing new concepts and technologies into numerous markets, including healthcare, business, personal development, education, military and government. Doc has achieved a high level of credibility and influence among thought leaders in these and other area.

Question: What is meant by personal, social and global coherence?

Answer: Personal coherence, also known as psychophysiological coherence, refers to the synchronization of our physical, mental and emotional systems. It can be measured by our heart-rhythm patterns: The more balanced and smooth they are, the more in sync, or coherent we are. Stress levels recede, energy levels increase and our brain and what HeartMath calls the “heart brain” work together. It is a state of optimal clarity, perception and performance. HeartMath tools and technology have been scientifically proven to help us achieve personal coherence.

Global coherence refers to the mental, physical, emotional and spiritual well-being of the greater community of human beings acting in concert with their own hearts, each other and nation to nation in harmony with the living earth. HeartMath believes coherence is highly achievable globally when large numbers of people focus heartfelt intentions on a common goal.

Question: I’m interested in learning about HeartMath for self-improvement. Where should I start?

Answer: The most comprehensive work about the science and research of HeartMath and the HeartMath System is the e-Booklet Science of the Heart, by the HeartMath Research Center staff. This comprehensive monograph gives fundamental and detailed summaries of the HeartMath Institute’s many years of innovative research. It contains an overview of heart-rate variability, entrainment, coherence, head-heart interactions and the scientific discoveries that shaped the HeartMath System’s tools and techniques, which were developed to empower heart-based living. Science of the Heart.

The HeartMath Solution, by Doc Childre and Howard Martin, includes cutting-edge science, practical information and easy-to-learn HeartMath techniques. You’ll learn about the heart as the control tower of the body’s systems and health. The techniques will show you how to deepen your heart qualities of wisdom, compassion, strength and joy and increase your higher intuitive, creative and heart-centered aspects. The HeartMath Solution.

Question: Are HeartMath techniques simply types of relaxation/meditation techniques?

Answer: Although HeartMath techniques produce many benefits for the body, mind and emotions, HMI does not consider them to be forms of meditation because their purpose and effects – the experience they give – ­are quite different from relaxation/meditation practices. Professional meditators say HeartMath actually facilitates their meditation experience by improving their focus, emotional management and self-awareness.

Question: How does HeartMath view breathing in the stress-reduction process?

Answer: Although rhythmic breathing exercises can help control your heart rate and have a calming effect on the body, also shifting your attitudes and emotions can achieve much more. Research shows the key to neutralizing and countering the effects of stress is actively adding a positive feeling such as appreciation, care or compassion to the process. Experiencing positive emotions has a much broader range of potential health and wellness benefits than rhythmic breathing alone. Generating a positive feeling adds a dynamic element to stress management. Using the breathing pacer found in the emWave® technology in conjunction with positive emotions helps synchronize your nervous system and create positive changes in your heart-rhythm patterns – ultimately building and sustaining coherence and reducing stress.

Question: How do I teach my children HeartMath?

Answer: We have a variety of resources to help you teach your children, grandchildren, etc., the HeartMath System and the ways of the heart. On our HeartMath Tools page, you’ll see Tools for Youth and Tools for Children tailored for specific age groups. We recommend Tools for Adults for you because these not only will benefit you in multiple ways, they also will guide you and help set your intention with your children.

Heart-Coherent Parenting has free resources and our heart-focused programs, services, games, music and more for Children ages 2-6, Youth Ages 7-11 and Teens Ages 12-18+. Resources and solutions for special needs children, disciple and home school, Click here.

We also have HeartMath programs and technologies to help students learn and master emotional awareness and self-regulation skills. To learn about the classroom programs we have Pre-K through 12th grade, Click here.

Next, the HeartMath Research Library has a large collection of pertinent papers, studies and other materials. As you become familiar with these resources and the HeartMath Institute website, you’ll discover other helpful ways to teach your children the ways of the heart. Visit the HeartMath My Kids! Facebook page and General Education FAQs  for additional ideas.

Question: Can I visit the Institute?

Answer: As much as we would like to meet all of our friends, we’re unable to receive casual visitors or give tours. We receive visitors by appointment for business or research purposes only. If you are a scientist, doctor, psychologist, teacher, etc., and would like to make an appointment to discuss relative business, let us know. We’ll put you in contact with the right person to meet your needs. Please submit your request to, or call us at (831) 338-8500.

Question: What authors besides those with HMI discuss HeartMath?

Answer: HeartMath is referenced in over 300 books, many of which are written by esteemed bestselling authors such as Dr. Christiane Northrup, Dr. Deepak Chopra, Dr. Barry Sears, Patricia Aburdene, and Stephen R. Covey.

strong>Question: Can I learn HeartMath techniques without taking a class?

Answer: Yes. A great way to learn HeartMath techniques is through any or all of these books: The HeartMath Solution, Transforming Anger, Transforming Stress, Transforming Anxiety and Transforming Depression. Find them in the HeartMath Store.

You also may want to view the HeartMath Tools for Well-Being in HMI Free Resources.

If you want to speed up the process and measure your progress, we highly recommend the emWave2® handheld device, the emWave® Pro system, Inner Balance™ Trainer or all three. Visit emWave and Inner Balance Technology for more information.

Question: Do you have a catalog? Can you send me literature?

Answer: Submit requests for a printed brochure about HeartMath Institute at

Submit requests for a printed educational catalog on specific products and educational literature at For an online version, go to Education Catalog.

Question: How can I use your intellectual property in a presentation? May I use HeartMath’s copyrighted materials in my seminars, workshops or publications?

Answer: HeartMath does permit use of its intellectual property and copyrighted materials for some limited purposes. Click here for further information.

Question: How do I change my mailing and shipping address information?

Answer: Changing your address is easy. Go to the HeartMath Store and click on ‘My Account’ on the upper right side of the page. This page contains an ‘Edit Profile’ link under ‘Support’ that will take you to the mailing and shipping addresses we have on file for you. Click the “change” button beneath either to make modifications. The My Account page also allows you to conduct other personal business such as changing your e-mail address or your password, check your orders and downloads, view billing statements and more.

Question: I had a life-changing experience using HeartMath. Where or how can I submit my story?

Answer: We’d love to hear your story, testimonial or comments. Please e-mail them to

Question: How do I search your site for specific information?

Answer: A search box is located at the top of all our web pages. Basic search functions usually will bring up the desired results. Simply type in the word or words pertaining to the topic or item for which you are searching. Fewer words likely will bring up a greater number of results, but they may not be as specific to your topic as you would like. Using more words usually brings up fewer, but more pertinent results. To do an exact word or phrase search, type double quote marks at the beginning and end – “emWave technology” – of your search string Click to top of page for Website search box.