The image of a trainer waiting at the finish line, stopwatch in hand, is becoming obsolete. Today, fitness technology is a booming business, with market research group ON World estimating that tech wearables will grow to a nearly $50 billion industry in the next five years. As a consumer, the options from wearable tech companies continue to expand.
Each wearable tech item on the market has its own unique advantages and disadvantages. Before buying, think about your lifestyle and the types of activities you want to track. Do you run, bike, or swim? Lift weights? Or are you simply looking for a way to keep track of your daily steps as you run errands? Keep your lifestyle and fitness routine in mind when shopping for tech wearables, and you’ll be sure to find a device that integrates seamlessly into your life.
FitBit Charge HR
FitBit is one of the leading wearable tech companies, and for good reason. Its devices have a reputation for being intuitive and easy to use. The FitBit Charge HR is a sleek wristband with a built-in heart rate monitor. The device tracks your workouts as well as activity throughout the day. It can provide information about your distance, calories burned, active minutes throughout the day, and number of steps.
One of the FitBit Charge HR’s most attractive qualities is its built-in heart rate monitor. A small display can show you your real-time heart rate, allowing you to track your heart rate zone as you work out.
If monitoring your fitness over time is important to you, the FitBit Charge HR is a great option. It automatically syncs your fitness stats to your smartphone or computer, meaning that you can keep track of your progress.
The Apple Watch is designed to be more than just a fitness tracker — it will revolutionize your overall lifestyle. The Apple Watch assesses your movements throughout the day, from playing with your dog to climbing a flight of stairs. Its build-in activity app provides a simple graphical display of how you’re doing each day, including times you’ve stood up to take a break, active calories burned, and minutes of brisk activity. This feature is perfect for the office dweller who wants an easy way to track basic activities for health.
During a workout, the Workout app tracks your pace, speed, distance, and elapsed time. You can choose from a number of fitness activities that are trackable by the watch. Or, use your favorite third-party app to track your progress.
Its fitness features are just the tip of the iceberg, so if you’re looking for a versatile product, the Apple Watch may be for you. It allows you to view notifications from phone or social media, use Apple Pay, play games, monitor the news, or check your grocery list.
The Jawbone Up2 is perfect for the stylish, with its thin, sleek bracelet-like appearance. This device holds a charge for up to 10 days, meaning that it’s always on when you need it. The Jawbone Up2 is a good option for those who want to easily track both physical activity and dietary intake. The device scans food barcodes, searches restaurant meals, and has a database of commonly eaten meals. Plus, the Smart Coach feature continuously learns about your preferences and routines, creating smarter recommendations tailored just for you.
The Misfit Flash is impressive for its sheer versatility. This device is a small clasp, meaning that you can connect it to your wrist, waist, pocket, shoe, shirt, or even your key ring. The device has slightly fewer fitness metrics than some other tech wearables, counting only calories burned, distance traveled, and steps taken. However, its interactive user interface allows you to set goals or to compete with friends through a social feature.
The Misfit Flash also stands out from the competition by including metrics about your sleep health. The device assesses the duration and the quality of your sleep, allowing you to track progress and set goals for good sleep health.
Called a “super watch,” the FitBit Surge monitors your activity during the day as well as your sleep at night. This sleek watch offers GPS tracking to give you accurate information about your pace, distance, elevation change, and route. Plus, you can play songs as you work out and receive notifications through the watch. With a built-in heart rate tracker, this device is among the best fitness watches on the market.