LIFESTYLEGear & TechChoosing the Best Fitness Watch

Choosing the Best Fitness Watch

By: Luke Vandermeer

Even before COVID-19 hit, our world was rapidly becoming more digital on an annual basis. The pandemic has sped this up to record levels and the world of fitness technology has been no exception. With the entry of home gyms and the need for portable and reliable fitness technology, the competition between fitness watch devices has gone more global than ever. 

With your home gym all set up how do you plan on tracking your results? It’s time to go out and buy a fitness tracker, but where do you start? One look at a big box store website gives you an overwhelming amount of selection, all boasting the same amazing features but still claiming to have an edge on their competition. Given the vast amount of selection, what is truly the “best”, or “best for you” option? We’ve done our research so we can give you some popular opinions. 

Here is what our survey results found: 

Results are compiled from 75 individual fitness technology users

Looking at this data, Fitbit brand technology comes out on top for overall preference based on our surveyed feedback. However, there are still strong votes for the competition. What makes Fitbit, Garmin, Apple or any other the “best for you” option? Let’s dig a little deeper into the top four. 

Samsung 

A proven, reliable and household name, Samsung offers a wide variety of technology for your life, and their fitness products live up to their name. Incorporating many staples of the fitness

tech world including step tracking, sleep cycle info, and heart rate monitors, Samsung offers upper-level features on their devices including stress level tracking and irregular heart rate notifications. Add these options to a watch that syncs with your Samsung phone for texts, calls and a sleek looking design to look more like a watch and you have a device that checks off a lot of the boxes for needs across the board. 

Affordability comes into play for Samsung, as you will pay this level of comfort. While there are cheaper options for more basic wearable trackers, most of Samsung’s products will run you anywhere from the mid $300.00 range to a sizable $800.00 + for your fitness tracking device. 

Apple

Another proven brand, Apple technology successfully incorporates many of the necessary options you’d look for in fitness tech. Running, swimming, ECG reports and blood oxygen levels – Apple has a product that can cover all your needs. They even have an option now to warn you that you’re in a loud environment. Add the compatibility to many of your other household Apple products and this fitness product can easily measure up against their competition. 

Pricing is comparable to Samsung, however, don’t expect to pay less than $400 for this watch. While older versions are still available for less, the newer versions, especially those with the cellular data option, can run you close to $1000.00. 

Garmin 

While compatible with many phones to bring your calls and texts to your wrist, Garmin seems to be more focused on hardcore results than anything else. Offering a wide variety of devices based on your individual fitness routines, Garmin tweaks their devices from recording a golf workout to barometric readings for adventurers and even diving stats for water fanatics. With a beefier, more rugged design available, the Garmin brand offers fitness tech for more elite athletes. If you’re looking for a brand that could hold up to a firefighter’s active lifestyle, this could be your pick. However, if that’s why you want to go with Garmin, be prepared to pay up – there are options with comparable pricing to Samsung and Apple, but devices specialized for adventuring or diving run up as high as $1,300.00. 

Fitbit 

It is clear that Fitbit offers many of the desired options for fitness technology, while doing so on a budget. There are options out there for all members of the family, and with an expansive community forum you can go head-to-head with friends, co-workers or even your kids in one of many available challenges. Fitbit’s designs look more like a wearable health device than an actual watch and they won’t offer all of the cutting-edge options some of the competitors do, but if you’re looking for a reliable fitness brand to provide results in a clear, concise way Fitbit is a great choice. 

With many options ranging in the $100.00 to $300.00 level, Fitbit offers much of what’s needed and won’t break the bank while doing it.

The takeaway – while many brands offer individual features that make them preferable to different users out there, Fitbit offers a popular variety of devices to get you what you need while saving some cash for that next set of dumbbells for your new home gym.

Photo by Christine Sandu

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