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This study investigates the rate estimation problem encountered in rehabilitation exercise monitoring by using noninvasive portable sensors. The purpose of this paper has two main parts. The first part is to find suitable approaches for the rate detection of tri-axial accelerometer (TA) signals and ECG signals respectively. It is found that the integral type approaches (the average magnitude difference function (AMDF) and autocorrelation function (ACF)) are particularly suitable for TA signal pre-processing, while differential type approaches are very efficient for electrocardiographic (ECG) signal pre-processing. The second part is to develop a square wave matching method to detect the rate from the pre-processed signals. Experimental results indicate that the proposed methods can effectively detect pace rate from TA and heart rate from ECG and remove undesirable spikes.