Fitness gizmo for swimming
October 27, 2013 11:47 AM   Subscribe

Trying to find the perfect birthday present for my husband, and I'd really like to get him something like my Fitbit Flex, as we are both working on being more active and losing some weight. However, his major form of exercise is pretty hardcore Masters swimming; I'd love a gadget that will track his swimming plus all the other activity in a day-chasing kids, playing soccer, walking, etc. Any thoughts? Any experience with the new Misfit Shine, for instance?
posted by purenitrous to Health & Fitness (8 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
It's not really analogous with a Fitbit, but the Tom Tom Multisport is designed specifically to track swimming, running/walking and cycling - so worth a look.
posted by MuffinMan at 1:14 PM on October 27, 2013

I don't have any personal experience of it but the Swimovate poolmate watches seem like they might be the sort of thing you are looking for. They count laps, measure stroke efficiency and in the case of the HR model also measure heart rate.

If he mostly swims in open water you can get GPS trackers designed for swimming - I know Garmin makes some.

Less in the serious fitness range, I love love love my Speedo Aquabeat - under water mp3 player. I used to swim for 35-40 minutes and then get out, now I happily swim for hours. Not quite what you asked for but I thought I'd mention it. Literally one of the best birthday presents I have ever had.
posted by *becca* at 1:18 PM on October 27, 2013

Have you seen the Instabeat? It's slated for release in December with pre-orders available now, and it's been getting some decent buzz around here.

From their page:
Instabeat is the first waterproof heads-up monitor that tracks, stores, and displays instant feedback of your heart rate during your swim to optimize your training and allow you to achieve your peak performance.
So basically a Fitbit with a hud to display the info in your goggles as you swim.
posted by xqwzts at 4:00 PM on October 27, 2013

I have the Misfit Shine, and I've tried various Fitbits in the past as well. I don't really like it - it looks great but the syncing with iOS was fiddly (unlike the super-easy Fitbit) and the app too simple.
posted by adrianhon at 4:41 PM on October 27, 2013

FWIW I have also heard murmurs from my Industrial Design co-workers that the Misfit is not a great product (I can't remember on what basis exactly).

Also it doesn't seem like you are considering a Flex, but if you are, several people I know including myself have had their Fitbit Flex fail after water exposure (although it claims waterproof).

Instabeat looks pretty interesting, but I think it's often safer to go for a gen 2 product so the bugs are worked out (see issues with Jawbone Up gen 1).
posted by gillianr at 8:32 PM on October 27, 2013

Response by poster: Man, this is apparently harder than I'd think it would be. The Flex is a no go due to the swimming issue...I haven't had any problems with mine doing things like washing dishes or showering but instructions are pretty clear not to use it for swimming. Instabeat does look cool, though only would capture swimming data and not anything else.

Tomtom multisport...maybe that's the way to go. Twice the price.
posted by purenitrous at 9:31 PM on October 27, 2013

I am not sure a general activity tracker will have enough detail to make it useful to a Masters level training. Depending on what he wants, you may want to look into a swimming specific watch or a multisport watch.

For a swimming watch: Garmin Swim

For a multisport watch (including swimming): Garmin Forerunner 910XT

Check out Ray has tons of independent, in depth reviews on various fitness devices. He also has a product comparison calculator here.
posted by TinTitan at 8:56 AM on October 28, 2013 [1 favorite]

What time frame are we looking at? The Amiigo is due to ship sometime before Christmas; it was an Indiegogo campaign and was originally due to be released in June, so there's a lot of slippage (hopefully for the better, as it now looks like it will be lighter and smaller). But, it's waterproof to be used for swimming as well as other activities. Maybe something to consider for a future gift if it doesn't meet your deadline, once you can see what kind of reviews it actually gets when it's released.
posted by sascha at 10:07 AM on October 28, 2013

« Older What can I do to use this heating vent under my 7"...   |   I somehow got red wine on this rented tuxedo. Help... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.