Validity of a wearable sweat rate monitor and routine sweat analysis techniques using heat acclimation

Rebecca Relf, Gregor Eichhorn, Kirsty Waldock, Melanie Flint, Louisa Beale, Neil Maxwell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: the aim of this study was to assess the validity of a novel wearable sweat rate monitor against an array of sweat analysis techniques which determine sudomotor function when exercising moderately under heat stress. Construct validity was determined utilising a 5-day short-term heat acclimation (STHA) intervention. Methods: Nineteen healthy individuals (age: 41 ± 23 years, body mass: 74.0 ± 12.2 kg, height: 174.9 ± 6.9 cm) [male; n = 15, female; n = 4] completed nine trials over a three-week period, in a controlled chamber set to 35 °C, 50% relative humidity for all sessions. The pre and post-trials were separated by five consecutive controlled hyperthermia HA sessions. Sweat analysis was compared from pre and post-trial, whereby whole body sweat rate (WBSR) was assessed via pre and post nude body mass. Local sweat rate (LSR) was determined via technical absorbent patches (TA) (weighed pre and post) and a novel wearable KuduSmart® (SMART) monitor which was placed on the left arm during the 30-min of exercise. Tegaderm patches, used to measure sweat sodium chloride conductivity (SC), and TA patches were placed on the back, chest and forearm for the 30-min cycling. Results: Sudomotor function significantly adapted via STHA (p < 0.05); demonstrated by a WBSR increase of 24%, LSR increase via the TA method (back: 26%, chest: 45% and arm: 48%) and LSR increase by the SMART monitor (35%). Finally, SC decreased (back: -21%, chest: -25% and arm: -24%, p < 0.05). Conclusion: All sweat techniques were sensitive to sudomotor function adaptation following STHA, reinforcing their validity. The real time data given by the wearable KuduSmart® monitor provides coaches and athletes instant comparable sudomotor function feedback to traditional routinely used sweat analysis techniques.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102577
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Thermal Biology
Publication statusPublished - 29 Mar 2020


  • Sweat analysis
  • Short-term heat acclimation
  • Sudomotor function
  • Validity
  • Heat stress


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