preview image showing workout do not disturb toggle

If you’re in the middle of a hard run or chill yoga session, you probably don’t want your phone to ring (unless it’s really important). By automatically enabling Do Not Disturb on your Apple Watch when you start a workout, you can make sure you don’t get interrupted. Here’s how.

What Is Do Not Disturb Mode?

Do Not Disturb is one of the (many) modes you can put your Apple Watch in. It stops notifications and alerts from appearing and playing sounds, although it doesn’t stop any apps you’re using from playing audio. Here are two key things about Do Not Disturb mode:

You can put your Apple Watch or iPhone into Do Not Disturb mode at any time using the Control Center:

  • To access it on your Watch, swipe up from the bottom of the screen.
  • To access it on your iPhone, swipe down from the battery icon in the top right of the screen.

In either case, tap the “Moon” icon to turn on Do Not Disturb.

The Do Not Disturb icon on the iPhone and Apple Watch.

How to Automatically Turn on Do Not Disturb Mode When You Workout

You can also have Do Not Disturb automatically turn on whenever you start a workout, either in the Workouts app on your Apple Watch or in any other app you use for tracking workouts, like Strava, Intervals Pro, and the like. This means it works with Apple Fitness+ workouts, too.

To do so, open the Watch app on your iPhone and go to General > Do Not Disturb.

image with general setting highlighted image with do not disturb setting highlighted

Activate the “Workout Do Not Disturb” option.

image showing workout do not disturb on

Note: If you want your iPhone to go into Do Not Disturb mode when your watch does, make sure “Mirror iPhone” is toggled on, too.

Now, whenever you start a workout, Do Not Disturb will start, too. And when you finish a workout, your watch and iPhone will go back to whatever mode they were in before.

If you want to, you can also turn off Do Not Disturb mode from the Control Center. If you’re waiting for a phone call or text message, you don’t need to worry about missing it. Just start a workout and turn off Do Not Disturb whenever you like.

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Harry Guinness is a photography expert and writer with nearly a decade of experience. His work has been published in newspapers like The New York Times and on a variety of other websites, from Lifehacker to Popular Science and Medium's OneZero.
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