A Normal Pulse Rate for a 4-Year-Old


Your child’s pulse rate, or heart rate, is a measurement of the number of times her heart beats in 60 seconds. The pulse rate is typically highest at birth, when the tiny chambers of the newborn’s heart beat rapidly to supply oxygen to the body organs. As your baby gets older and her heart grows larger, her pulse rate will slow and the range of normal values for her age will narrow, according to “Essentials of Pediatric Nursing” by Theresa Kyle and Terri Kyle.


You can measure your child’s pulse at any point where an artery runs close to the surface of his skin, according to Medline Plus. The most common site is the radial artery on the inside of his wrist, but you can also palpate the carotid artery at either side of the front of his neck. Some other sites for pulse measurement include the femoral artery on the inside of the groin, the popliteal artery behind the knee and the tibial artery on the top or side of your youngster’s foot.

Correct Procedure

You can easily measure the pulse in children over the age of 2 years by placing two fingers over one of the arteries near the skin and counting the number of times it throbs in one minute. According to Medline Plus, you can also calculate your child’s heart rate by counting the beats for 30 seconds and multiplying that number by two.

Normal Range

According to data from eMedicine Net, the range of a normal pulse rate for a 4 year old child falls somewhere between 65 to 140 beats per minute.


Your child’s pulse rate at any given point in time is influenced by a number of factors, including his level of fitness, recent activity level, emotional state, body size, body position and medication history, says Dr. Edward R. Laskowski, a physical medicine and rehabilitation specialist at the Mayo Clinic. Montana State University notes the ideal time to measure your child’s heart rate is first thing in the morning. If you’d like to check his pulse later in the day, select a time that’s at least two hours after a meal and four hours after vigorous physical activity. Have him sit or lie down while you count heart beats.


Whenever you seek medical attention for your child, the health-care professional will measure her three vital signs: pulse rate, blood pressure and respiratory rate. These results give the doctor a good idea of the youngster’s overall health status.

About this Author

Sandy Keefe, MSN, RN, has been a freelance writer for five years. Her articles have appeared in numerous health-related magazines, including Advance for Nurses and Advance for Long-Term Care Management. She has written short stories in anthologies such as A Cup of Comfort for Parents of Children with Special Needs.