If one of your goals is to get fitter this year, a fitness watch could be your new best friend. Fitness watches from the likes of Fitbit, Huawei, Garmin, Apple and Samsung aim to make our lives healthier by tracking our activity and wellbeing. Whether you want your running miles counted with GPS, a waterproof watch for swimming with the kids, or a wristband for women to track your yoga flow, a fitness watch is a great way to motivate you on your journey.
Our buying guide will teach you all you need to know, plus we'll provide some fitspo with our reviews of the top 10 buys from Argos, Amazon, John Lewis and eBay, including cheap and affordable Android designs and high-end smartwatches, designs with extra-long battery life, trackers, and models for beginners.
A recommendation service that carefully researches each product and consults with experts across many disciplines. We are constantly creating new content to provide the best shopping experience from choosing ‘cosmetics’ to ‘food and drink’, ‘home appliances’ to ‘kids and baby’ products, reaching users all across the United Kingdom.
Table of Contents
The range of fitness watches abilities is vast, going from basic step trackers to smartwatches with capabilities to rival any phone, and unsurprisingly, the price tags are similarly varied to match. This guide will help to decipher which ones are worth your attention.
First and foremost, a fitness watch should track the main pillars of a healthy lifestyle. If you're focusing on exercise, think about which sports or activities you participate in most. But don't feel limited to this: fitness watches are getting more holistic in their fitness approach.
The origin of fitness watches can be traced back to the humble pedometer, and although technology has moved on massively in the last few years, step-counting remains a central function of these bits of kit.
More basic watches will focus just on steps and meeting a daily goal, but some can provide much more data: Were the steps done running or walking? How quickly were the steps completed? If you're a keen runner, you want as much detail as you can get, so you may wish to look for extra functions like these as well as the staples.
If you prefer cycling or hitting the weights to pounding the pavement, you're going to need some extra features to help track these activities and their unique movements. Fitness watches now measure an array of fitness pursuits from HIIT and cardio to yoga – so make sure your watch tracks your favourite workout.
Most of the fitness trackers these days are waterproof, but this doesn't automatically mean that they'll be able to track your strokes. If swimming is one of your preferred types of activity, look specifically for a watch that tracks your strokes, not just one that can go in the shower or survive the rain – although this can be advantageous too!
You know that you're working hard to reach your fitness goals when you've broken a sweat, and you're a bit red in the face! Heart-rate monitors now come as standard in most fitness watches, but they do differ in their levels of analysis. If this is important to you, assessing the specs of each model to find exactly what you need is wise.
Although some watches can give you detailed information about your heart's rhythms, it is worth noting that you shouldn't trust them entirely as they are not entirely medically accurate.
In recent years, more of a fuss has been made about the often overlooked importance of sleep. For those who want to know whether they're getting a good eight hours of shut-eye, fitness watches now tend to offer sleep tracking as a feature. They can tell you how deeply you were sleeping and for how long, although this does mean wearing your watch overnight.
The tracking of health and wellbeing is clearly the first consideration for fitness watches, but choosing a watch doesn't just come down to this. Today's fitness watches have more and more functions, and it's worth considering which ones are essential for you.
For those keen on documenting exactly where their fitness pursuits have taken them, GPS is a must. Some watches have GPS built-in – the better option if you want to go out with just your watch – whilst others require you to connect and bring your phone along too, so pick whichever fits in with your activity style best.
Music can provide a welcome distraction when exercising. Luckily, many watches these days can connect to wireless headphones so you can have the tunes blasting whilst bringing minimal equipment with you.
The amount of capabilities a watch has comes largely down to the style and shape of the watch. Therefore, when choosing your preferred look, it's also worth weighing up which features you'll need in addition to a watch's appearance and how practical it is for your needs.
Some fitness trackers resemble bracelets or bands more than traditional watches. These have the screen built into the strap. As a result, they look elegant and are not too imposing on your wrist, but they do often end up having a smaller screen.
This means they are not the best option if you want to use your watch to read emails and messages, but they still perform all the basics such as tracking movement and telling the time.
The alternative option is to go for a fitness watch that looks more like, well, a watch. They usually have a simple strap with a larger face, making it easier to see data. These appeal to those who'd prefer a watch they can match with both office wear and workout gear.
It's also a good option if you want your watch to act as a mini phone, as they tend to have more extra features. For this reason, they are more expensive and therefore may not be within everyone's price range.
We've all been there: you're out all day with no access to a plug, and a key piece of tech dies on you. This is the last thing you want to find with a fitness watch, particularly when it's something that you want to have on you at all times.
The battery life of fitness watches does vary enormously due to their difference in functions. Think about how often you'll be willing to charge your watch as some require daily charging, whereas others will go on for months.
Click to purchase
A Durable, Feature-Packed Watch You Can Rely On
This Elegant Watch Stands Out From the Crowd
Galaxy Watch Active
A Smartwatch With a Sleek Finish
Track Your Swimming at an Affordable Price
Band 4 Pro
Offers a Huge Range of Settings For Every Workout
A Fitness Watch That Doesn't Look Like a Fitness Watch
A Fun Watch With a Face for Every Mood
Well-known in both the GPS and the fitness watch markets, Garmin is a brand that you know you can trust. With a screen made of extra-durable glass, the watch itself is as solid as a rock and made to last, yet it still manages to look effortlessly cool whilst doing so.
The features on this watch are endless - there are so many we couldn't fit them all here! To summarise: it combines the best points of a more basic fitness tracker and a more high-tech smartwatch, and as a bonus, it manages to keep all of this going for up to seven days. A total winner!
The unique detailing on this watch, including the grey band and the on-trend, rose gold finish, make this choice many times more elegant than other fitness watches - ideal for fashionistas or the less sporty in style!
Although pretty, as you'd expect from the brand, it's also practical and boasts the ability to track up to fifteen different sports. It also has the option of setting up contactless payments – very useful for when you're out and about without your wallet or purse.
This smartwatch manages to balance looking like a piece of technology and a stylish fashion piece. As well as this sleek grey, it comes in a range of colours so you can choose one to fit your personality or outfit of the day.
Because it falls into smartwatch territory, the number of functions on this fitness watch is vast, but this does mean it can drain the battery quickly, with the charge only lasting for just over a day.
Do not let the fact that this unassuming watch comes from a lesser-known brand put you off; it has many features of the more known – and more expensive – watches on the market alongside being very affordable.
It also has a large, easy-to-read screen and a relatively good battery life, as well as waterproofing and swimming tracking capabilities. Its slightly basic, functional look might put some people off, but it certainly does what it promises.
The range of extra features that this watch has makes it a great all-rounder. It has the option of recording indoor or outdoor sport – meaning it will work just as well at the gym as in the park.
If long-distance running is your thing, then this watch will have you covered too. The built-in GPS can track your movements for up to seven hours, meaning the only thing you have to worry about is smashing that PB. And if the black look is too plain, you can choose from several other colourways such as red or pink.
It would be easy to mistake this fitness tracker for a regular watch with its classic look and analogue face, but in fact, this watch can track running, cycling and even swimming!
It does this by connecting through Bluetooth to your phone, and because it doesn't display everything, the battery life is phenomenal. It might not be what everyone is looking for in a fitness tracker, but this watch doubles as a fitness tracker and a classy piece of jewellery.
Don't be fooled by this watch's neat, little size; it still has all the functions you would expect from a watch with a bigger face – although the battery life isn't the best for a smaller model. One fun feature of this watch is that you can choose the default time display with different colours and fonts.
On a more practical level, this watch is waterproof up to 50m. It has the exciting addition of measuring your blood oxygen levels, which is particularly useful if you do high-altitude sports.
When you purchase products mentioned in the article, part of the sales may be returned to mybest.
The descriptions of each product is referenced from the content available from the manufacturer, e-commerce sites etc.
PC and cameras
Home appliances and electronics
Cosmetics and skincare
Food and drinks
Kids and baby
Interior and furniture
DIY and tools
Sports and fitness
Books, CDs, DVDs
Cars and motorcycles
Housing equipment and renovation
Smartphones and mobile phones