What are the pros and cons of wrist-based heart rate and heart rate with a chest strap?
Polar uses two different methods in measuring heart rate: chest strap with a heart rate sensor and wrist-based heart rate measurement. They are also technologically different: chest strap sensor detects your heart rate by electric signal and wrist-based method uses optical heart rate measurement.
Both methods have their upsides and downsides, but each have to be worn correctly to get accurate results.
|Wrist-based heart rate
- convenient all-in one solution
- you can quickly check your heart rate or start a training session without wearing a separate chest strap
- not necessarily accurate in sports where you move your hands vigorously or flex the muscles and tendons near your wrist
- not so reliable in interval type of training with quick sprints
- more likely to be worn incorrectly: either not tight enough or too tight
|Chest strap with heart rate sensor H6 or H7
- very reliable in various sports
- based on reliable and accurate Polar technology for heart rate measurement
- connectivity via Bluetooth Smart with various other devices, like mobile phones with apps, and other training devices
- have to remember to carry along and wear the strap beside your wrist unit
- some experience it uncomfortable around the chest
- requires regular washing to keep the textile strap functional (washing also gradually wears it down and you'll have replace it with a new one)
To get the benefits of both technologies, you can use a chest strap HR sensor like Polar H7 as an accessory with a wrist-based heart rate measuring device like Polar A360.