how to take blood pressure

When Measuring someone’s  blood pressure you need the right equipment, these days its common to use electronic blood pressure readers, but the reading is not always correct. It’s better to obtain the blood pressure measurements manually as you always get a more accurate readings.

When taking blood pressure manually you need three pieces of equipment.

  • Stethoscope
  • sphygmomanometer *
  • Cuff *

* Often these items are combined.

The reason for using this equipment, is so that you can record the systole ( heart contraction) and diastole (heart in relaxation) measurements from the clients arm . Someone’s blood pressure can give you an accurate reading of their health, normally readings for blood pressure outside the normal range can indicate a person with poor health, and a higher chance of cardiovascular disease. This is the reason why fitness and medical professionals want to gain a accurate recording of your health, so they have an idea of persons cardiac output for any health related issues.

First make sure you are in a quiet and comfortable room, without distractions.

Make sure the client is rested and relaxed

Apply the deflated cuff around the bare upper arm, make sure no clothing our tubes are in the way, as when hearing through the stethoscope will be very sensitive and any slight noise will disrupt the reading.

 Normally there are three sizes of cuff,

Children 12-20 cm

Adult 16-26 cm

Large adult 32-42  cm






  1. The client should be seated with arm extended  at the elbow and supported at with the palm laying upwards at heart level.
  2. Inflate the cuff, raise the pressure 30mmHG above the anticipated systolic pressure. Then gently release  the pressure at 3mm per second.  Be Careful not to over inflate the cuff as it can cut the circulation of the arm.
  3. The first sound you want is the systole, this sounds like a clicking noise. Start recording as soon as you hear the first taping. This sound is often faint and hard to hear, so it can take a few times to master.
  4. diastolic pressure  is the next reading, you start this is taken when  as soon as the sound to disappears.
  5. Always stay calm and if you cant hear it, do the process again the recording  will soon be heard.
  6. Always take two measurements, to ensure readings are the similar. Remember to wait 60 second between measurement readings.
  • 120 over 80 mmHg is normal for blood pressure,
  • athletic people often have a lower reading such like 90/70
  • Anyone who has a reading of 140/90 is in the high normal region
  • 160mmHg and above would indicate someone in the high risk

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