Most people who exercise will tell you they want to lose weight or simply get fitter. Not many people, however, know what their heart rate is, or where it really should be.
This means that often, they are not training in the most efficient way to achieve their goals. Also, the only way to actually know how many calories you’re burning while you’re exercising is to have a heart rate monitor that is consistently hooked up and tracking your heartbeats. All top athlete’s heart rate train, as they know this will help them to reach their top potential in the shortest amount of time possible.
There are currently two different types of heart rate monitors on the market. The chest strap style and the wrist band style.
A wireless sensor on a chest strap detects your pulse electronically and sends that data to a receiver which displays your heart rate. This is similar to what you can see in hospitals with patients who have sensors strapped to their chest. These type of monitors tend to be highly accurate.
Many fitness trackers claim to be able to monitor your heart rate without the chest strap. They operate by shining a light into your wrist, which is then reflected by blood vessels passing through your veins. When your heart pumps, the blood moves through your veins at a quicker rate, causing less light to be reflected back. The tracker will then calculate your heart rate using an algorithm.
The current trend may be to move heart-rate monitoring away from the chest and over to the wrist but accuracy at these new locations is still questionable. Particularly for high intensity workouts. If you are very serious about heart rate training, a chest rate heart rate monitor is the way to go.
MyZone has been in the chest strap heart rate monitoring business for a while now, mainly dealing with gyms and health clubs. The company’s latest device, the MZ3, aims to add a level of competition to regular heart rate training.
As the name suggests, everyone has different fitness zones that change over time. The MZ3 identifies, rewards and adapts those zones and displays that information in five tiles based on the intensity. It then uses a points based system to turn fitness into a fun exciting game.
The company claims that their chest straps deliver readings with 99.4% EKG accuracy.
We spoke to president of MyZone who told us “Wrist based monitors can accurately track resting heart rate, but when it comes to vigorous activity, wrist based monitors have a more difficult time keeping up.
Moderate and especially vigorous and non-rhythmical activity throws off readings in wrist based monitors. Some wrist monitors need time to catch up; wearers must wait 10 seconds for the wearable to recover and continue to track movement.”