It's the little continuous changes that make the difference. Whether you consider yourself active or want to start leading an active lifestyle, having the best step tracker will make the whole process easier.
The fitness product industry is extremely competitive; hence it's no wonder that the best fitness trackers must find ways to stand out constantly. When shopping for your best step tracker, it's essential to consider your fitness and health goals. Each tracker boasts various features, and some may not be completely relevant to you. Hence before investing in one, it's advisable to assess what you're looking to achieve, track and record.
With so many brands and features to choose from, it can seem confusing to settle on one. That's why we created this guide that outlines 5 of the best fitness trackers in the market and features to consider when buying them.
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Best Fitness Trackers - Reviews
The Fitbit Inspire 2 boasts many health and fitness features.
Firstly, the fitness tracker has a super sleek design and comes in three distinct colors allowing you to choose what works.
The Fitbit Inspire 2 tracks your steps, heart rate, calories burned, active zone minutes, and sleep status. It does this all while keeping you up to date on texts and call notifications. You can set silent alarms that buzz your wrist to wake you up. This is a great feature if you want to avoid waking up a partner or roommate. ( or generally hate loud ringing alarms)
The fitness tracker provides goal-setting capabilities and complementary app access. The battery life is up to ten days, and the device comes with a convenient charging cable.
What's pretty cool about the tracker is that you can use it for a wide range of workouts, including walks, swimming, and bike rides. It also includes over 20 exercise modes.
When you activate the device, it unlocks a full year of Fitbit Premium.
If there's one thing Apple always gets right, it's their design. The Apple Watch features a stunning and minimalist design that stands out.
The Apple Watch Series 6 is pretty similar to its predecessor, series 5; however, this new series is all about the small details that matter. The series is focused on ensuring that you can monitor your health and always be on tabs with what's going on. This is extremely relevant, especially with the current situation.
The biggest change is the new blood oxygen level function. The Apple Watch also features an ECG (electrocardiogram) app so you can measure your heart rate. You can additionally track your sleep, daily activities and choose from various workouts.
The Apple Watch allows you to stay connected; hence you can receive calls and texts, listen to music, use apple pay and use Siri. All at the convenience of your wrist.
Finally, the Apple Watch Series 6 features a vibrant Always On Retina Display that's been designed to be 2.5x brighter outdoors when your wrist is down; that way, you can see your watch face without waking your screen. You can also customize your watch face to make it more personalized.
Whether you're looking for the best step tracker for hiking, running, or cycling, the Fitbit Charge 4 can be considered a worthy contender as it has a lot to offer.
What makes it stand out is its addition of the built-in GPS, which gives it a huge boost among those looking to exercise outdoors without the location tracking assurance of their smartphone.
The fitness tracker features Active Zone minutes offered when you reach your target heart rate while exercising. In addition, the fitness band gives you buzz signaling your status.
The Charge 4 also has a SpO2 sensor, which helps estimate your blood oxygen levels. It also tracks your skin temperature each night to see how it varies from your personal baseline.
The Fitbit is water-resistant up to 50 meters and swimproof, so you can track swimming, wear it in the shower, etc. The fitness tracking is real-time with 20+ goal-based exercise modes. You can also track sleep.
Lastly, the features also include Fitbit Pay and Spotify control. In addition, the companion app lets you log meals, water intake, check your weight, and so much more.
The Fitbit Versa 2 boasts various fitness tracking capabilities. However, its compatibility with Amazon Alexa stands out, especially for those who value smart home tech.
The Fitbit Versa 2 tracks your heart rate, steps, calories, and sleep quality. In addition, you can download music apps like Spotify, Deezer, or Pandora and listen along whilst your watch is busy recording your health data.
The battery life lasts for up to 6 days.
The Amazfit Band 5 offers a great choice if searching for a cheap fitness tracker with good features.
The tracker features built-in Amazon Aleza; hence you can ask questions, set alarms and timers, create shopping lists, check the weather, control your smart home devices and more.
The fitness band allows you to measure your blood oxygen saturation, stress monitoring, track real-time steps taken, all-day heart rate monitoring, distance traveled, calories burned, and sleeping patterns.
The estimated battery life is 2 weeks on a single charge which is great, especially if traveling. Another great feature is the female period tracking system that records and predicts the female menstrual cycle and sends smart notifications reminders.
Features To Consider When Buying Best Fitness Trackers
a) Battery Life
One of the essential features to consider when shopping for the best fitness trackers is the battery life. Ideally, you want a device with long battery life as this means you can use it for a longer period. You also need to check how the device needs to be charged as some require to be connected to an electrical outlet and others via a USB port. It's always advisable to read customer's feedback vis a vis manufacturer's claims to get a better idea of how long the fitness tracker's battery life is likely to last.
b) GPS Tracking
Many of the best fitness trackers usually have a built-in 3 axis accelerometer to track movement. However, built-in GPS can be useful depending on the type of activity your carrying out. For instance, if jogging or walking through unknown areas, a GPS tracker navigation system may be advantageous.
It is worth noting that the best fitness trackers with built-in GPS tend to cost more than those without. Hence, it only makes sense to purchase one if you really need it. The advantage of GPS functionality is that it does tell you exactly how far you ran, biked, hiked, etc., and it will also track your vertical gain. It can also track big-picture data like many vertical feet you skied in the winter or climbed on a bike in the summer.
In addition, by looking at GPS routes, you can discover new routes or get a new perspective on the location and scale of where you were. You can also compare the metrics on social fitness platforms like Strava to your personal bests it those of your friends.
c) Design and Style
While shopping for the best fitness trackers, you'll notice that they come in different shapes and styles.
Brands continue to make their designs more functional and attractive, making one feel like they are spoilt for choice.
However, when choosing, remember that the fitness tracker will be worn most of the time; hence it's essential to choose a comfortable design on your wrist.
Most fitness trackers come with rubberized bands that are simple in design. However, some models come with sports bands with vibrant colors and fancy designs. It's an excellent choice for someone with a sporty lifestyle.
d) Display or no Display
Choosing a fitness band with display or not is dependent on your personal choice. Most of the best fitness trackers feature an LED display, while others have LED lights on them. Some people prefer the best fitness tracker with a display as it allows them to keep track of tasks.
There are also fitness trackers with colored and touchscreen displays. They tend to be more appealing, and you can control them with a swipe of your finger.
The best fitness tracker without a display will let you sync your phone and check your progress. However, there's not much you can do directly on it.
e) Measuring of Steps
One of the main reason reasons people search for the best step tracker is actually to measure steps. The idea behind steps is to generally increase your activity and incorporate healthy behavioral habits into your lifestyle gradually. With a step tracker, you're able to measure and record easily. These devices can be worn on the hip or wrist and track each step you take throughout the day.
Ideally, with the best step tracker, you can track and measure the steps. Some fitness trackers take this a notch higher, allowing you to share it socially, working in some competition into your step counting. This can be helpful if you need that to get you motivated. The best fitness trackers can also measure how many calories you're burning, monitor your heart rate, etc., thus encouraging you to keep going in your healthy journey.
f) Heart Rate Monitoring
Heart rate monitoring sounds pretty awesome, but there are different types of heart rate monitors. It's also worth noting a built-in heart rate monitor can increase the value of a fitness tracker.
Optical heart rate monitors are those built into the fitness tracker itself. However, you'll actually find that some of the best fitness trackers don't have a heart rate monitor but can pair with a chest strap.
If interested in knowing your resting heart rate, you may not need to buy a fitness band with an optical heart monitor. Many smartphone apps can take your heart rate in about 15 seconds using the phone's camera. You can also check your pulse once or twice a day, and you're good to go.
g) Sleep Tracking
Sleep tracking is another feature that most people look out for searching for the best fitness trackers. This is ideal especially if you've been having trouble sleeping and would like to track your sleeping pattern. Many of the best fitness trackers do feature sleep tracking. They usually watch for movement using a three-axis accelerometer to a more sensitive degree than they do during the day.
The best fitness tracker will often offer graphs in its companion app showing your light, deep, and REM sleep duration. Some also track your overnight respiration (the number of breaths you take per minute).
h) Dedicated Fitness Trackers
These trackers are designed to cater to specific activities.
Swimmers require the best fitness trackers that are waterproof. However, it's crucial to keep in mind that not all water-resistant trackers are actually for swim tracking.
On the other hand, runners require the best fitness tracker that will show time, distance, pace, lap time, etc.
Cyclists require the best fitness tracker that supports their abilities. Serious cyclists may require fitness tracking devices to elevate their biking experience and pair them with additional bike equipment. If cycling is a hobby, then searching for the best step tracker to track how many calories you burn while pedaling would be the goal.
Something worth noting is the display and how you want to control the tracker. For instance, if you run in the cold while wearing gloves, you may want to steer clear of the best fitness trackers that only have touch-enabled displays.
i) Fitness App
The app of a fitness tracker is key. Whether it's on your phone or the web, the app is vital as it's where all the information that's tracked is recorded. Ideally, you want the best fitness tracker that lets you record all types of health metrics and data: your weight, calories, stress level, etc.