Many of our clients use fitness trackers to monitor their heart rate and track their fitness progress. Here’s the latest about fitness trackers and heart rate monitors.
In May, reports about the Fitbit heart rate trackers producing “highly inaccurate” calculations led to a class action lawsuit against Fitbit. Recent reports mention Fitbit devices miscalculate heart rates up to 20 beats per minute on average during intensive workouts, the Fitbit missed heartbeats, marking an average heart rate error of 14 percent. “Calculating a heart rate that’s off by 20 or 30 beats per minute can be dangerous — especially for people at high risk of heart disease,” a report by Ball State University explained.
You don’t necessarily need a chest strap with the Polar A360 because the A360’s optical heart rate monitor does an admirable job measuring both at rest and in motion. To ensure accurate readings with strapless monitors, make sure the tracker fits correctly and tightly. If your tracker shifts during rest or motion, it can cause a misreading. The A360 tracks daily activity, steps, calories, workouts, and sleep. The highlights of this tracker include its battery life, water resistance, comfort and swappable bands. If you’ve already mastered the basics, the Polar A360 is an advanced fitness tracker that gives concrete recommendations on how to improve your health.
If you already have a chest strap monitor, the A360 is a great second monitor for on-the-go fitness fanatics!
The current trend may be to move heart-rate monitoring away from the chest and over to the wrist but accuracy at these new locations is still unclear. The Polar H7 heart-rate monitor takes the traditional chest strap and adds Bluetooth Smart support giving you heart rate data on sports watches, compatible gym equipment and phone app. If you want a reliable heart-rate monitor and can live with strapping onto your chest, the H7 is an excellent option and well worth the money. There’s already extensive app, Polar Beat, and sports watch support available to combine it with.
Garmin Vivosmart HR+
This activity tracker has a wrist based heart rate monitor. A unique feature of the Vívosmart HR+ is that it assigns an attainable daily step goal based on your previous activity. This feature really challenges you to push yourself by adjusting your goal for the next day based on the goals you have achieved from the previous.
The Garmin Vivosmart HR+ is one of the best devices for runners who want more from their fitness tracker, offering serious run tracking along with powerful daily activity stats. The Vivosmart HR+ is a valuable tracker if your primary activity is running.
Garmin Vivoactive HR+
Though it’s built for the fitness-obsessed, the Garmin Vivoactive looks more like an everyday smartwatch. It’s small and light and uses a soft chest strap to track fitness. It has a high-resolution touchscreen that’s clear, colorful and backlit. Best of all, it’s also power-efficient, enabling you to go for up to three weeks between charges. Whether you’re into walking, running, cycling, swimming or playing golf, the Vivoactive can accurately track your activities.