- In medicine, the number of times the heart beats within a certain time period, usually a minute. The pulse can be felt at the wrist, side of the neck, back of the knees, top of the foot, groin, and other places in the body where an artery is close to the skin. The resting pulse is normally between 60 and 100 beats a minute in a healthy adult who is at rest. Measuring the pulse gives important information about a person’s health. Also called heart rate.