Tracking the progress of your fitness is one way to set new goals and gain renewed motivation. Also, considering the time of the year buying a fitness tracker could be a sensible way of ensuring your gym buddy or a fitness loving friend has a present they’ll be excited to open on Christmas Day.
There are hundreds of different tracking devices on the market. Some are more specifically designed for individual sports whilst others are for regular gym users or those who like a bit of everything. Below we’ve rounded up five of the most popular fitness tracks currently on the market.
Nike+ FuelBand SE
Nike has been producing fitness tracking applications and equipment for some time now – encouraging sportspeople to become even more engaged with their brand. The latest model of their FuelBand is the SE. The FuelBand is possibly the most popular and best known fitness band on the market as it gives the wearer an indication of their steps through colour coding. It’s like an enhanced pedometer and it utilises new technology to modify the quantity and intensity of your steps to ensure you meet your daily goal. The SE is updated from previous models due to the fact it’s waterproof and also can be synced to Bluetooth – therefore can easily be connected up with the Nike+ app. This means you can keep an eye on your progress and alter your goals accordingly. You can even compare your scores with other users on the app if you fancy a bit of competition.
FitBit is another well-known fitness brand with a range of tracking devices on the market. The Flex is their wrist fitness band and is far more simply designed than the FuelBand and the Pulse which we’ll discuss later on in this list. Rather than having the LED display of these other devices the Flex simply utilises a line of lights to indicate how close to your daily target you are. It can be connected up easily to a range of devices including Apple iPads and Android smartphones via USB. The Flex also monitors your sleep and has a handy in-built alarm so if you did want to use it as an alarm clock you could. This is a feature you won’t find on any of the other devices highlighted in this list.
The Misfit Shine is a lesser known product but this doesn’t detract from its quality. It tracks your activity and sleep and unlike the others utilises a watch battery for power which means it only needs charging once every few months. You can wear the Shine wherever you like with the wrist, ankle and even neck possible. It shows you how close you are to your daily steps goal with a ring of lights much like a clock face. It can be synced up to related apps on both Apple and Android devices which gives you the opportunity to collate your data and start making sense of where you’re headed. You can set separate goals for walking, running and swimming and this device is water resistant to 100m.
Jawbone is another major fitness brand that most readers have probably heard of. It’s one of the most interesting fitness tracker designs currently on the market which definitely contributes to its popularity. The Jawbone Up offers the same sleep and movement tracking features as the other trackers and the information tracked can be synced back to your smartphone or tablet device. It also has the additional facility of being able to add in extra information such as your diet and mood so the software can analyse you fully as a person and give an insight of your overall wellbeing and fitness. The Up doesn’t have any display screen or readout at all – you have to just keep going and the only way to find out how things are is to check your phone. When you go to bed you can simply flick your Up from day to night mode and it will record your sleeping pattern.
Unlike the other trackers in our list the Pulse isn’t a single piece wristband. It’s a small rectangular box which you can clip to your belt or you can attach it to a wristband. As standard it will track your walking and running but it can also be programmed to record your heartbeat, sleeping patterns and there are a wide range of partner applications it can be synced up to. An added bonus is that you can connect the Pulse up with the Withings wireless weighing scales (one of our top Christmas gifts for fitness fans). The Pulse can be connected up to your smartphone and tablet via Bluetooth. Withings are usually pipped to the post by Nike in most charts but they do have the bonus of being slightly cheaper and Android compatible in their favour.
If you’re considering a fitness tracker as a Christmas present or for your fitness kick in the New Year then these are the best ones on the market.
by Jessica Ward
by Laura Briggs
by Jessica Ward
by Jessica Ward
by Jessica Ward