Best fitness trackers 2023 | Live Science

The best fitness trackers can be invaluable tools for hitting your health and fitness goals. Whether you want to keep an eye on heart rate, count your daily steps or train for a marathon, these clever gadgets can give you personalized feedback to get you where you want to be.

What the expert says:

“Wearables are a low cost, convenient tool for boosting your daily activity and achieving additional weight loss, fitness trackers not only encourage exercise and weight loss, but may also help lower blood pressure and cholesterol in people with Type 2 diabetes and other health conditions.” – Nathan Kennedy, qualified personal trainer and representative for sports nutrition specialists Bio-Synergy.

Gone are the days of fitness trackers being glorified heart rate monitors. These days, the best models are like pocket-sized personal trainers. Modern smartwatches offer a range of impressive features, with the likes of sleep tracking, stress management and workouts becoming the gold standard across models at all price points. 

Some premium fitness trackers, such as the top-rated Garmin Forerunner 965 or Apple Watch Series 8, can even help you navigate your way around thanks to an in-built GPS system.       

To help you find the best fitness tracker possible, the Live Science team has spent countless hours putting some of the top models through their paces. Below, you can find the results of our thorough testing processes. For even more options, check out our roundups of the best Fitbit and best Garmin watches too.

Best fitness trackers

Apple Watch Series 8

(Image credit: Andrew Williams)

Our favorite fitness tracker overall

Specifications

Screen: 1.6in/1/34in and 1.77in/1.49in OLED

Water resistance: 5ATM

GPS: Yes

Compatibility: iOS

Battery life: 18 hours

Reasons to buy

+

Good GPS and heart rate accuracy  

+

Ovulation tracking

+

Supports a lot of third parties 

Reasons to avoid

One-day battery life

Not worth the upgrade if you own Series 6 or 7

Not for Android users 

If you’re looking for great GPS and heart rate hardware, The Apple Watch Series 8 is a fantastic health and fitness watch and our favorite of all the watches we’ve tested.

Apple really does offer best-in-class when it comes to health and safety features. In the Series 8, you’ll find an ECG monitor that can detect abnormal heart rhythms, a blood oxygen monitor and sleep tracking too. There’s also an advanced gyroscope for fall detection, as well as ovulation tracking for those with a menstrual cycle. These are all features that you can find in other trackers, but in our experience the heart-tracking capabilities of Apple outstrip its competitors. 

On top of that, the watch has an app library that’s bigger than all of its rivals put together. You can find second-party apps that will improve your yoga flows, help track your workouts and guide you on meditations. Compared with its predecessor, the Apple Watch Series 8 also offers more in-depth data on activities like running, including heart rate zones. You can even create custom workouts and save them to

Read More... Read More

The 10 best fitness trackers in 2022

Fitness trackers have come a long way from the simple bands that tracked steps and little else. Modern trackers can monitor everything from your heart health to how well you’ve recovered from a hard bout of training. They’ve got sensors galore and, in some cases, can give smartwatches a run for their money. Whatever your fitness goals are, there’s probably a fitness tracker that can help you achieve them.

Compared to some other gadgets, wearables are incredibly personal. That means there are a few extra considerations you’ll have to take into account before reaching for your wallet. It makes it hard to say that any one fitness tracker is the best for everyone. Thankfully, the best thing about fitness trackers in 2022 is that there’s enough variety to fit into every kind of lifestyle.


The Fitbit Versa 3 is a versatile tracker with a reasonable mix of features for the price.
Photo by Victoria Song / The Verge

Best fitness tracker overall

There’s a reason the Versa lineup is so popular. While it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles, it’s got everything you need in a basic fitness tracker for a reasonable $229.95. Plus, you can frequently find it on sale for under $200.

In terms of sensors, you get continuous heart rate monitoring and SpO2. It supports NFC payments and has a microphone for taking phone calls on the wrist. Plus, you can have the option of both Alexa and Google Assistant. Unlike previous iterations of the Versa, this one also comes with built-in GPS. The Versa 3 also gets you about a week of battery life and the ability to get a day’s worth of charge in just 12 minutes.

Fitbit’s platform is also among the most user-friendly, especially for folks just getting started in the world of fitness trackers. It’s got a large community for competitions and one of the more streamlined companion apps. There’s no lack of data, especially if you opt for Fitbit Premium. The Versa 3 also comes with a 90-day trial of Fitbit Premium, so it’s something you can mull over before deciding to shell out.

Sure, you don’t get EKGs or the flagship Fitbit Sense’s electrodermal activity sensor — but I’d argue most people won’t end up using these features regularly anyway. Like the Apple Watch SE, the pared-down Versa 3 makes more sense for the average person.


Fitbit Versa 3

This Apple Watch doppelganger features built-in GPS, Voice Assistance, and heart rate monitoring.


The Amazfit Bip S offers more features than you’d expect for $70.
Photo by Victoria Song / The Verge

Best budget fitness watch

If you’re looking to save a little moolah, the $69.99 Amazfit Bip S is an excellent choice. It’s not the most attractive tracker out there, but it gets you a lot of features you wouldn’t expect on a tracker under $100. For example, it has built-in GPS, in-depth sleep tracking, continuous heart rate monitoring, an always-on display, and about two weeks of battery life.

Read More... Read More

The 14 Best Fitness Trackers, Watches and Bands In 2021

Staying in shape is hard work (and honestly, that can feel like a humble brag to anyone trying to get into shape in the first place). It’s especially hard to do on your own, without any help, coaching or encouragement. That’s why a lot of people turn to tech to keep themselves active and engaged in their personal health and fitness journey. A fitness tracker—whether it’s a fitness band or a smartwatch—can remind you to exercise, monitor your activity level during and after each workout and track your progress over time. The best fitness trackers are the next best thing to having your own personal trainer.

Choosing the right tracker can be daunting. Fitbit, the company that singled-handedly popularized the concept of fitness tracking, sells no fewer than seven different models on its own. And then there are fitness trackers from Samsung, Garmin, Amazfit and a dozen other companies. It pays to shop carefully, because not all trackers are designed for the kinds of exercise you want to do, and some have extra features, like smartphone notifications, heart rate monitoring, stress tracking and blood-oxygen level sensors.

No matter which fitness tracker you choose, there’s a good chance it’ll cover all the basics pretty well, but you might want extras like water resistance (great if you’re a swimmer), the ability to track stairs and built-in GPS so you don’t need to bring your phone along on a long run. We’ve rounded up 14 of the best fitness trackers you can buy today; no matter where you are on your fitness journey, there’s a model here for you.

Best Fitness Tracker Overall

Fitbit Inspire 2

The Fitbit Inspire 2 captures the flag as the best overall fitness tracker because it represents, in many ways, the template from which all other trackers are created. The Inspire 2 represents the culmination of everything Fitbit has learned about making wearables over the years, and includes pretty much everything the average person needs in a fitness tracker. It counts steps, distance and has sleep tracking features. It automatically recognizes when you’re doing a variety of common workouts and starts tracking—over 20 kinds of workouts in all. It’s waterproof to about 150 feet and you can wear it into a pool to track swim workouts.

The Inspire 2 replaces the older Inspire HR and, like most modern wearables, includes a full-time heart rate monitor. You also get an impressive 10-day battery life, but the coolest change in the new Inspire 2 is the lack of any buttons. You control the sleek, streamlined fitness monitor by squeezing the touch-sensitive side of the band.

It comes in three color colors and has some smartwatch-like features. It doesn’t have an always-on display, but the display is bright when you activate it and the screen can show the time and fitness info, as well as receive notifications from your phone. So not only can you monitor your

Read More... Read More