Heart rate monitor?

I do lots of cycling so thought I’d get a reasonably priced heart rate monitor which looks like a watch on the wrist

It says it’s for running however it will still monitor my heart rate right? . I couldn’t find any designed specifically for cycling at a good price. Obviously the calorie and step counter won’t be accurate but all I need it for is a simple heart rate monitor

In the product description it says …
The heart rate sensor technology on the HR 500 is ideal for sports involving repetitive movements such as running, walking or cross-training.
For sports involving unsynchronised movements like fitness sports, weight training, racket sports and team sports, you may observe errors in the readings.

According to google, cycling is cross training so should be ok

I’m in the iOS system so I’d just use my Apple Watch.

I can customise what it shows me on the watch.


I have a Garmin Fenix 6 for heart rate. Did have an Apple Watch but battery wasn’t powerful enough for longer rides / weeks away. Get approximately 7 days with my Garmin.

And to answer your question - if if says it will measure your heart rate it will - it doesn’t really matter what activity it is (except water related ones).


Ok thank you ! Yes all i need it for is monitoring my heart rate

Just to add, the optical heart rate monitors on watches are great and convenient however they can be a little slow to pick up change in heart rate so if you are using it for interval training targeting certain heart rates it may be better to get a chest strap to go along with it. If it’s just for a general idea of your heart rate the optical one should be fine.

but to answer your question, yes it will monitor your heart rate and for the vast majority of people the watch heart rate sensors are great.

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Yeah I’m guessing that’s why it says they don’t recommend it for weight training , team sports etc as heart rate will fluctuate lots.
However I only will use it for cycling at a steady pace and seeing how quickly my heart rate gets back to normal after exercise
Pretty important bit of kit in my opinion

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What are you wanting to achieve by monitoring your heart rate?

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To see how healthy my heart is, and how quickly my heart rate returns to normal after exercise

For cycling I have a Garmin Edge 1000 (a few years old now) paired to a Wahoo Tickr heart rate strap. I used to do fairly regular all-day (200Km or so) rides, so I needed a way to keep recording all day. The Garmin can be powered by an external battery, which you can’t generally do with a watch. The strap will last for months on a single battery though.

Long story short, see what the battery life is like on the watch, as the combination of GPS and heart-rate monitoring will usually rinse the battery. Depending on how long your rides are, it may become an issue.

Watches are really good for monitoring resting heart rate though, which is useful for monitoring your overall health.

I did a full physical evaluation about 18 months ago using the same very expensive kit that Premier League football clubs use (it was a work thing - not something I’d usually do!) M

The very detailed results that came out of this were surprisingly close to what I get out of my Fitbit Charge2. Not identical of course but honestly if all you’re looking for is a reasonably accurate measure of your fitness you don’t need to spend a lot.


Got the hr monitor. Not sure how accurate it is as it’s saying I’m burning calories without even moving
Heart rate seems a tad higher than it is ( measured it manually )

How accurate are Apple watches ?

You do, that’s how your body works. It is burning the fuel you give it in order for you to live.

Otherwise the 2500 calories (or whatever) you consume a day would just constantly increase your weight, aside from the days you exercise.

Now obviously it depends on how many calories it says you’re burning. If it says you burnt 30 walking to the fridge then it’s probably not that accurate.

There have been various studies comparing watches/monitors.


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You are burning calories without moving. If you’re weren’t, you’d be dead!


Ah ok thanks

Would the tattoos on my wrist make any difference?

I would consider an Apple Watch even though paying £200 for something to tell the time and show my heart rate is quite steep

Tattoos on your wrist can indeed cause issues with heart rate monitors.

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Yeah it would seem so.

Don’t know whether to go for the Apple Watch or not then , if it the same technology probably not a good idea

Apple Watch can have the same issues.

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Looks like the only way then would be to get a strap around the torso. However they look rather uncomfortable

I’ll give mine a go later on a lighter part of my tattoo

I could always put in on the inside of my wrist however the instructions say the outside

I believe some of the later Apple watches are able to deal with tattoos better than older ones. Particularly series 4 and 5. Series 5 offers an ECG feature, which won’t suffer the same issue you get with optical sensors in regards to tattoos. I don’t believe this feature passively monitors your heart rate though, it still uses the optical sensor for that. But of course, it’s the ECG feature that will identify irregularities and save lives, not the optical sensor.

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Ok thanks

Charged it, put it on tighter and on an area with less ink and it seems much more accurate

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