Skip to Content

Does Apple Watch Count Calories While Sleeping?

As an owner of an Apple Watch, I’ve often wondered if it counts calories while I’m sleeping. Frustrated with not being able to find the answer, I decided to do some research and testing to determine the answer. Now that I’ve found the answer, I’m here to share how I solved this question, as well as some other solutions I discovered. So, does Apple Watch count calories while sleeping? Let’s find out!

The Apple Watch can track calories you’ve spent during the day as well as at night. During sleep, the calories your body burns are called resting calories or resting energy. If you’re wearing your Apple Watch while sleeping, it’ll calculate your resting calorie burn.


  • Wear your Apple Watch while sleeping to have it track resting calories
  • The Apple Watch will run a series of algorithms to calculate the estimated number of calories burned while sleeping
  • You can view your resting calorie count on the Health and Activity apps on your iPhone
  • Make sure to subtract your active calorie count from the total calorie count to get your resting calorie count
  • Resting calorie count is only an estimate and not 100 percent accurate
  • Your Apple Watch won’t track resting calories if you’re not wearing it while sleeping
Feature / QuestionAnswer / Explanation
Does Apple Watch count calories while sleeping?Yes
How does it track calories during sleep?Using personal data, heart rate, movement, and algorithms
Are resting calories accurate on Apple Watch?They are an estimate but highly dependable
Can Apple Watch count resting calories while charging?No, it needs to be worn while sleeping
Where can I view resting calories?Health and Activity apps on iPhone
Does the watch need to be worn during sleep?Yes, for tracking resting calories and other metrics

Does Apple Watch Track Calories While Sleeping?

During sleep, your body spends energy to keep breathing, digest food, and perform multiple other basic functions. This passive demand for energy ends up burning a bunch of calories.

On average, a 125-pound person burns around 38 calories per hour while sleeping. If we consider a sleep period of 7 to 9 hours, the resting calorie count would fall between 260 and 350 calories.

So, does the Apple Watch track this type of calorie burn?

The answer is yes.

The Apple Watch can calculate the calories your body uses up during the day and at night. However, you must be wearing your Apple Watch while you’re sleeping to allow for this feature.

How Does Apple Watch Track Calories During Sleep?

Upon setting up your Apple Watch, the device asks you to provide personal data regarding your body and lifestyle such as your gender, age, height, and weight.

At the same time, the watch itself is equipped with various types of sensors that detect and track your heart rate, movement, and other activity metrics.

With all this information collected, your Apple Watch runs a series of algorithms to process it and then give you an estimate of the number of calories you’re burning at any given time.

The same thing happens whether you’re working out or tucked in bed. The watch picks up on your movement and heart rate, combines this information with your body data, runs an algorithm, and finally calculates a calorie burn estimate.

Are Resting Calories Accurate on Apple Watch?

Now that you know your Apple Watch can track calories while you’re sleeping, you’re probably wondering if the number it calculates is accurate.

Well, if you read what we explained in the previous paragraph carefully, you’ll notice we keep saying the word “estimate”.

This is because the calculations made by Apple’s algorithm are ultimately an estimate. Real talk — it’s not possible to get a 100 percent accurate count of calories burned unless you’re in a very controlled environment.

That said, Apple Watches do use a set of powerful and advanced sensors and algorithms to ensure their estimates are as accurate as possible. So in the end, the resting calorie count on your Apple Watch should be highly dependable.

Read more: can you use Apple Watch on Google Fi?

Can Apple Watch Count Resting Calories While Charging?

As we mentioned earlier, you must be wearing your Apple Watch while sleeping to have it track your resting calories.

This is true for any data or metric, resting or active. No information will get recorded if you’re not wearing the watch simply because the sensors won’t have any signs to detect.

As such, when you take off your Apple Watch to charge it while you sleep, it won’t track your resting calories. It also won’t monitor your sleep or heart rate.

Read more: Does Apple Watch have its own phone number?

Where Can I View the Calories Burnt While Sleeping on Apple Watch?

If you’ve been wearing your Apple Watch while sleeping and you want to view how many calories your body burnt during your slumber, you can do so via 2 apps follows:

Health App

  • On your iPhone, open the Health app.
  • Open the Health Data tab.
  • Tap Activity.
  • View Active/Resting Energy.

Activity App

  • Open the Activity app on your iPhone.
  • Tap the Activity ring at the top right side of the screen.
  • You’ll see the total calories burned during the day just below the move data in the bottom left corner of the screen.
  • Subtract your active calories (shown in your Move goal) from the total calories burned to get your resting calorie count.

Wrap Up

So, does the Apple Watch count calories while sleeping? The answer is yes, but you have to be wearing your Apple Watch while sleeping.

This enables the watch to detect your movement, heart rate, and other activity metrics as you sleep, and consequently, calculate your resting calorie burn.