Heart-Rate Monitors

The latest


The latest fitness bands are smarter and svelter than ever

Thanks to smartphones and watches, athletes can track more data than ever. But is HRV all that really matters?

The days of counting steps are over. The Mio Slice looks at your heart rate to give you an overall health score based in science.

Tracking HRV has emerged as one of the best ways to quantify recovery. But it’s also one of the most misunderstood and misused fitness tools around.

Heart-rate apps bring Olympic-caliber recovery to everyone

There are countless watches, bracelets, headbands, and foot pods on the market promising to record every little thing you do. But can any of it make you a better athlete? The author wades through the muck and the mire to data-mine his best self.

An increasing number of well-designed tools help rock climbers train more effectively

New gear for more informed—and more fun—training

A flashlight, a fitness tracker, a GPS...the list goes on.

Because a world without internal-frame backpacks, bike derailleurs, and wetsuits would be a darker place

Music to your ears, training for your heart

Introducing the first helmet on the market that measures your heart rate.

Some people might be built for speed and others for distance, but everyone benefits from running faster. This is how you do it.

Creating a food journal to help you lose weight just got a helluva lot easier.

How do we put this nicely? If you’re anything like the participants in a recent Canadian study, you’re probably wrong about your workout intensity. (And yes, you probably are like them, considering that the group contained both men and women of different ages, ethnicities, and BMI classes.)…

No fancy equipment needed — just your finger, a notebook and one minute a day

The avalanche of data generated by fitness tech has science zeroing in on some surprising performance recommendations.

Avoid these errors and you will be well on your way toward getting the most out of your heart-rate monitor

I'm starting to get more serious about my training. What heart-rate monitor should I buy?

I am looking for a reasonably priced heart rate monitor/watch that tracks calories burned. It should also be able survive water sports, like stand-up paddling, swimming, and flatwater kayaking.

Our five favorite gadgets for everything from recording splits to rocking out, including the New Balance Tri-Viz with four built-into-the-brim LEDs that can operate in three different settings; the Timex Ironman Run Trainer With GPS; and the Motorola Motoactv, a lightweight wristwatch that packs music and heart-rate tracking.

Still fumbling around with wires and a prehistoric bike computer? It's time for a performance boost. Here are six ways to enhance your next ride, from the headlight-taillight combo Light & Motion Urban 500 to the data-collecting Garmin Edge 200 to the iBike Sports iDash Phone Booth, which you can buy as an all-in-one bike computer.

I spend a lot of time exercising outdoors and I need a new heart rate monitor. What should I look for?

Training with a monitor can be daunting to master, but it’s the best way to make the most of your workouts.

A combined heart-rate monitor and GPS watch will supercharge your training. Motorola's Motoactv is one of the best on the market.

Outside reviews the best gear in the 2012 Winter Buyer's Guide, including the Casio ProTrek PRW-5000Y-1 watch.

Seven performance-boosting devices to give you an edge.

Whether you need to capture, connect, or just sit back and relax, the newest portable gadgets are ready to serve.

The GT3 helps track recovery times and adjusts your zone alerts quickly midrun—great for fartlek training and intervals. The manual is a little puzzling, but the payoff is worth the decoding time. cardiosport.com…

Looking for high performance at a low price? The N5 tracks lap times, stores data for 30 workouts, and offers the usual gamut of zone alarms, calorie counting, and percent of max—and doesn’t require a Ph.D. to use. nbmonitors.com…

Lose the chest strap. With a touch of the finger, the 10M takes accurate readings in four to five seconds, twice as fast as other strapless monitors. Don’t look for lap features or data storage, but you do get the usual zone alarms, a stopwatch, and a calorie counter.

Not sure if you need a heart-rate monitor? End the debate with this bargain: It has basic functions (percent of max, calorie burn, and vibrating or audible HR zone alarm, but no lap splits or data storage) in a reasonably low-profile design. www2.oregonscientific.com…

Heart Matters A heart-rate monitor should be both intuitive and powerful. This affordable one does well on both counts, automatically telling you what heart-rate zone you should be aiming for and uploading your workouts to training software with an optional $55 FlowLink cradle. polarusa.com…

If you’re in training mode, try this low-profile, watch-style monitor, which can track up to nine runs. Moving on up to a triathlon? It’s water-resistant down to 50 meters. Plus the sleek interface is so intuitive that I wore it—and got it—right out of the box.

Along with having every other feature you can imagine (PC connectivity, workout logs, and more), the t3 can detect over- or under-training and help you adjust on the fly. It’s the sleekest model here, but its chrono settings can be tough to read midlap. suunto.com/training…

Is there a heart rate monitor watch that doesn't look like a HR monitor/watch. I am in the market for a new everyday watch and HR monitor and was wondering if I could kill two birds? –Craig (Pittsburgh, PA)

Can you recommend a heart rate monitor? I'm looking for a do-it-all model, that a ten year old or adult can use. I want a model that constantly monitors heart rate, downloads to a computer, and doesn't cost a mint. Dave Sierra Vista, AZ

When collapsed, Black Diamond‘s ultrabright Orbit Lantern is the size of a cell phone ($30; bdel.com). Black Diamond Orbit Lantern             Train: Oakley Radar Sunglasses Oakley Radar SunglassesBecause the Oakley Radar‘s photochromic lenses quickly adapt to changing light conditions and repel almost…

Looking for more information than just your weight? Transparent electrodes on Tanita‘s BC573 Body Composition Monitor also measure body fat, water retention, and muscle mass ($109; thecompetitiveedge.com).

I cycle long distances, run, backpack, use my bike trainer, etc. And I’d like some type of GPS that has it all so that I don’t have to use three or four different tools. I want something that can map a route whether I’m on my bike or hiking around Mt. Rainier. I want something that will show my cadence, heart rate, miles, elevation, average speed, and time, play my music, and set up tent (OK, not that last thing). Can you suggest a tool that does it all? Rich Spanaway, Washington

Got any suggestions for a good heart-rate monitor that is reasonably priced? Jeanna Princeton, New Jersey

What happens when training goes digital? Your workouts get real.

A lot of training guides I consult for my running and cycling training talk of heart-rate "zones." I have been looking at the wide range of heart-rate monitors and wondering if you could suggest one that's reasonably priced and good for running and cycling? Michael Providence, Rhode Island

I'm dumbfounded by all the choices with regard to heart rate monitors. Should I stick with the well-respected Polar or try other brands? Tracy Los Angeles, California

Calling all fitness Luddites and low-tech aerobic warriors—it's time to change your ways. Let us unlock the mysteries of heart-rate training and help you maximize your workouts.