Best Wrist Worn Heartrate Monitor?

Discussion in 'Product Recommendations - Other Training-Related' started by LoneRider, Jan 18, 2019.

  1. LoneRider

    LoneRider More than 300 posts

    Per some recent dialogue via PM I've had with Al Ciampa I'm now curious about heartrate training. I'm looking for a user friendly arm mounted heartrate monitor I can use for my roadwork (running and rucking) so I can get some good measurements.

    Any recommendations?
  2. kenaces

    kenaces Triple-Digit Post Count

    I have a Garmin vivosport that I like but the HR monitor isn't nearly as accurate as my chest strap. I have read this is a consistent problem with most if not all models of wrist HR monitors.
  3. Daveywhit

    Daveywhit Double-Digit Post Count

    I use a farming fenix 3hr. It has built in heart rate monitoring on the wrist, but I also use a chest HR monitor that talks to the watch. It provides more run diagnostic information and also lets me not wear my watch while doing KB work.
  4. Bret S.

    Bret S. Quadruple-Digit Post Count Certified Instructor

    I have a Polar H10 (chest strap) and a Polar OH1 (forearm strap), I use the OH1 almost always, it's worn on the upper forearm and reads as well as the H10 as far as accuracy and reliability.
    It's LED, highly recommend as I was concerned about accuracy and reliability when I ordered it, not any more...
    This comes from one who hates wearing a chest strap.
  5. mprevost

    mprevost More than 500 posts

    The wrist sensors are optical sensors and the wrist is not a good location for optical sensors. Most wrist based sensors will have some accuracy issues. The closest I could find to a workable solution is the Scosche Rhythm. You can wear it on the forearm and it works great. The chest mounted sensors are always going to be the most accurate but the Scosche was pretty darn good. It doesn't work great on your wrist, but on your forearm or upper arm is works really well. It transmits the signal to your phone or watch and I think the new models might store data. The best review on it is here: Hands-on: Scosche’s New Rhythm 24 Optical HR Sensor Swiss-Army Knife
    Bret S. likes this.
  6. offwidth

    offwidth More than 5000 posts

    Is there any reason for not wanting a chest strap?
  7. Bret S.

    Bret S. Quadruple-Digit Post Count Certified Instructor

    I'll have to try the Scosche unit when my OH1 bites the dust..
  8. thegoldengod

    thegoldengod Triple-Digit Post Count

    I use an Apple Watch worn on the inside of my wrist. I haven't compared it against other heart rate monitors (like a chest strap which will be the most accurate), but it has been giving me consistent readings for the last 4 years.
  9. mprevost

    mprevost More than 500 posts

    Only a couple of issues to be aware of. As an optical sensor it is not very good with heart rate variability measures. Also, it seems to do 5 second (approximately) averaging for heart rate. As a result, it responds with a short delay to intervals. I never found either to be an issue and gladly traded those issues for being able to wear the thing on my forearm instead of a chest strap.
    Bret S. and Daveywhit like this.
  10. mprevost

    mprevost More than 500 posts

    Some people don't like them because they can slide down while running or working out. Also, if you run outside, you can get a stripe tan.
    Bret S. likes this.
  11. offwidth

    offwidth More than 5000 posts

    So non-issues in other words...:)
    Daveywhit likes this.
  12. Jim Lauerman

    Jim Lauerman More than 300 posts

    I must confess that I simply don’t understand the problem folks have with heart-rate monitor chest straps. I’ve been wearing them while training for over 25 years.

    I must be missing something.
    Bro Mo, Bret S. and offwidth like this.
  13. Bret S.

    Bret S. Quadruple-Digit Post Count Certified Instructor

    My problem is due to body shape, the strap slides down to the bottom of the lats and feels like it's going to come down at any moment, I don't know why that bugs me so much.
    Another thing is I don't like to have anything wrapped around my neck or body, wearing a tie I feel like I'm being choked, luckily I don't wear them much. I'm claustrophobic in that way it seems.
  14. Jim Lauerman

    Jim Lauerman More than 300 posts

    Ah, that expains it. You guys have hourglass physiques. Mine is more of a triangle.(Pointy end up, unfortunately).
    Michael Scott and Bret S. like this.
  15. ClaudeR

    ClaudeR Triple-Digit Post Count

    No wrist HR will work reliably enough in all conditions.
    The apple watch was probably the best I used so far, but ALL wrist sensors fail in cold conditions (when cold blood flow to the extremities gets diminished, resulting in more difficulty to register a pulse, on an already difficult position (wrist))

    If you can’t use a chest belt (btw they suffer in cold also but very easy to remedy), get a scosche + as suggested. Although I could never get that to work reliably either. I must have very dense skin ROFL
    Bret S. likes this.
  16. Bro Mo

    Bro Mo Quadruple-Digit Post Count

    Same here. I tighten my strap a bit and have found that even at the bottom of the lats, readings are not affected - especially if I use an electrode spray like Parker.
    Bret S. likes this.
  17. banzaiengr

    banzaiengr Quadruple-Digit Post Count

    I believe what some folks like about the wrist sensors like a fitbit is they can wear it all day and it tracks energy expenditures, sleep, and steps (if you're into that). Most folks I've talked to say the charge doesn't last as long as advertised.

    You can always rely on a chest strap to be pretty darn accurate. But you probably don't want to wear it all day if you want the other add ons above.
    Bret S. likes this.
  18. Bret S.

    Bret S. Quadruple-Digit Post Count Certified Instructor

    My girl bought a fitbit, it lasted for a week and wouldn't charge. I suggested she return it but she just threw the $100.00 away.. shame it went that way
  19. LoneRider

    LoneRider More than 300 posts

    I'm currently looking at the Wahoo Fit chest strap, actually. Looking for accurate readings so I can train in the right heartrates when running/footmarching.
  20. Michael Scott

    Michael Scott Quadruple-Digit Post Count

    I have a FitBit Charge HR 2 that is going on 2+ years of activity tracking with no issues. I use it to roughly track my sleep, step tracking for events here at work, and I haven't had a problem other than the strap breaking. I was looking for something else, for KB work, but the only time I really need to take it off for now is TGU's.


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