Best Fitness Watch for Paddling?

1 week 6 days ago #36277 by TomWalsh
I see that people are using the Garmin (and other) watches on foot straps. 

Has anyone just used an older (and bigger screen) bike "computer" instead, like an Garmin Edge 130. They are pretty cheap, have big screens and some of them tout good water protection or resistance.

The Garmin Edge 130 says it is IPX7 waterproof (which should suffice in theory) but is the reality different?

https://buy.garmin.com/en-US/US/p/596828#specs

For reference the SpeedPuck is IPX8 (but more expensive).

Tom

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1 week 6 days ago #36278 by tve
'been using an Edge 130 for about a year now, about 3x/week in the ocean. Works well, absolutely love the large highly visible screen. I use a syringe to add some grease around the USB charge connector every now and then, so far no issues, and yes, it definitely gets wet! I have a Polar HR strap paired and for a while had a cheap bike cadence sensor paired as well with a calculated SPM or distance per stroke field displayed. Right now my favorite calculated field is average speed over the past minute shown as minutes:seconds per mile. Gives me a good idea of my "recent" pace.
The following user(s) said Thank You: TomWalsh

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1 week 6 days ago #36280 by TomWalsh
Ah-ha, glad I am not mad.

Can I please check how you have attached it? Is it with one of the usual Garmin mounts?  I guess  one of the quarter turn mounts with a  band might even work?

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1 week 6 days ago #36281 by tve
On my Nelo I use a gopro adaptor for the quarter turn thing. On a V12 I use the provided quarter turn mount with rubber bands going around the footstrap (just half of the footstrap thickness as it's in 2 layers). I attached a short lanyard to the device and clip that to a loop on the footstrap in case both bands break (hasn't happened so far).

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1 week 6 days ago #36285 by Epicpaddler
I know a lot of paddlers that attach devices to their foot straps. I guess my old eyes aren't that good. I tried it for while with my iPhone in a waterproof case. Even though it was in a waterproof case water droplets would cause it to change screens and I couldn't see it. Now I just use my Garmin fenix 5 GPS watch and pair it with a Wahoo heart rate monitor. Works great and provides decent data.

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1 week 6 days ago #36286 by robin.mousley

Now I just use my Garmin fenix 5 GPS watch and pair it with a Wahoo heart rate monitor

How long have you been using the Wahoo HR belt and which model is it?

I tried the Wahoo Tickr belt and while it worked, it was fantastic - connected much more quickly than the Garmin HR strap and was less affected by water...  except that it leaked.  And died after about three weeks (say 12 paddles).  I went through six of them in about 8 months - I tried everything including o-ring grease to seal it.

I'm back to using a Garmin HR strap and just put up with it giving occasional erroneous readings and lost connections.

Rob

Currently Fenn Swordfish S, Epic V10 Double.
Previously: Think Evo II, Carbonology Zest, Fenn Swordfish, Epic V10, Fenn Elite, Red7 Surf70 Pro, Epic V10 Sport, Genius Blu, Kayak Centre Zeplin, Fenn Mako6, Custom Kayaks ICON, Brian's Kayaks Molokai, Brian's Kayaks Wedge and several others...

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1 week 6 days ago #36287 by Epicpaddler
Hi Robin,

Yes, mine is the Wahoo Tickr.
  www.rei.com/product/112585/wahoo-fitness...rt-rate-monitor-2019
So far it's been great. Much more accurate than the Garmin watch built in heart rate monitor. I've heard mixed reviews, but so far I've been lucky. When I raced in the ocean last fall and spent plenty of time in the salt water it never missed a beat (no pun intended). Most of the water I paddle in is not that salty so I haven't had any leakage or corrosion issues. 

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1 week 6 days ago #36288 by pprin
The Garmin Fenix series has been great.  I use the Fenix 5 with the middle sized screen, if you have difficulty seeing it you can bump up to a larger screen version.  I made a very simple (cheap) custom mount by wrapping velcro around my foot strap.  For heart rate I use a Scosche Rhythm 24 which I can wear on my wrist rather than around my chest.  Also, the Fenix allows me to connect a Vaaka cadence sensor to track cadence and distance per stroke.  

The benefit of the newer Garmins really comes to light if you want to do structured workouts.  I can program a fairly detailed workout plan using the app and then upload it to the watch.  When I want to track progress on a given workout I can search and compare similar workouts across months or years using the compare function.  

-pprin

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1 week 6 days ago #36289 by SpaceSputnik
I use a simple Forunner 25, but lately not on the strap. I attach it in the middle of my paddle shaft. I have a little sleeve made by Stellar that comes over the lock and my watch has a home made vector strap.
I like it and it measures cadence that way too, can clear screen etc.

Current: Think Evo II, Stellar SES 1g.
Past: Epic V7

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1 week 6 days ago #36290 by mattbroad
I've been using a Nielsen-Kellerman SpeedCoach,  The bottom two windows can be programmed for a variety of options.  It has workout options for creating and then running intervals.  Heartrate is one of the options but you need to buy a bluetooth chest strap.  There are mobile apps for uploading the data, which is very rich in intervals per 0.1 miles.    It's not a cheap piece of equipment at $399, but I guess some of the garmin watches are getting up there now. I attach it using a plastic arm for a gopro I got on Amazon.  The only thing it does not do easily is upload to Strava, if that is important to you. I use the Rowing Coach app on an apple watch to do that.  
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1 week 6 days ago - 1 week 6 days ago #36291 by mattbroad
I've been using a Nielsen-Kellerman SpeedCoach,  The bottom two windows can be programmed for a variety of options.  It has workout options for creating and then running intervals.  Heartrate is one of the options but you need to buy a bluetooth chest strap.  There are mobile apps for uploading the data, which is very rich in intervals per 0.1 miles.    It's not a cheap piece of equipment at $399, but I guess some of the garmin watches are getting up there now. I attach it using a plastic arm for a gopro I got on Amazon.  The only thing it does not do easily is upload to Strava, if that is important to you. I use the Rowing Coach app on an apple watch to do that.  
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1 week 5 days ago #36292 by Epicpaddler
Nice.
Pretty sure I could see that screen mounted on the footstrap or forward in the cockpit somewhere.

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1 week 5 days ago - 1 week 5 days ago #36293 by XLV
I wanted to add my personal experience with the apple watch 3: I do not recommend it for surfski. The newer version may be better, but my friend has the version 5 and it still doesn't really address my main issues with it: the software and lack of flexibility. It's too bad because like many apple products, the hardware itself is amazing.

What I do like about it is the "Watersports Tracker" app and the "Tides" app - made by third party developers.

That being said, none of the clocks or apps are as good at keeping time as my casio (with a 3 year battery life) - it can sometimes take up to 5-10 seconds to deactivate a stopwatch application at the end of a paddling session (the screen becomes difficult to use when wet).

But perhaps my biggest gripe with the watch thus far is that there's absolutely no way to display my coordinates on the watch face screen (and I haven't found any watch apps that can add a coordinates 'complication' yet). Siri can open applications, but I doubt it would work well in super windy conditions. Apple developers could easily add a watchface that displays coordinates, but instead they spend their time making novelty faces with disney characters.

There's a few free applications that display coordinates (the "coordinates" app and "GPSCoordinates" app) - but they're not that great and neither of them supports a link to the app from the watch face.

Will be switching to something else in the next year. Are there any other apple watch apps that I should be trying out?

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1 week 5 days ago #36294 by mrcharly

SpaceSputnik wrote: I use a simple Forunner 25, but lately not on the strap. I attach it in the middle of my paddle shaft. I have a little sleeve made by Stellar that comes over the lock and my watch has a home made vector strap.
I like it and it measures cadence that way too, can clear screen etc.


These are pretty cheap now.
Can you program a session into it? Thinking of internal sessions, where you might do 1, 2,3,3,2,1 with 30s rest, or 4x4 with 2min tempo.

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1 week 5 days ago #36295 by SpaceSputnik
They just record your data, they don't tell you what to do. You can program one of the buttons to end a lap which will give you stats for that lap separately but that's about all I can think about.

mrcharly wrote:

SpaceSputnik wrote: I use a simple Forunner 25, but lately not on the strap. I attach it in the middle of my paddle shaft. I have a little sleeve made by Stellar that comes over the lock and my watch has a home made vector strap.
I like it and it measures cadence that way too, can clear screen etc.


These are pretty cheap now.
Can you program a session into it? Thinking of internal sessions, where you might do 1, 2,3,3,2,1 with 30s rest, or 4x4 with 2min tempo.


Current: Think Evo II, Stellar SES 1g.
Past: Epic V7

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1 week 5 days ago #36296 by pprin
The newer Garmins do all you to program in fairly complicated interval sessions in the app and then send it to the watch.  You only need to create the session once.  The watch will then provide alerts when you approach the start and end of a particular piece/repeat/rest.  You can also set it to alert you if you fall outside of a set speed, cadence, or heart rate range.  An example screenshot is attached.   

-pprin
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1 week 4 days ago #36299 by benhar123
Has anyone had experience with the Garmin Fenix 5 or the Forerunner 945?
If so what are your thoughts?
There are currently a lot of reviews on the Fenix 5 charging terminals corroding even without water use.

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1 week 3 days ago #36300 by TomVW
Hi, 
Concerning the Garmin Fenix 5 corroding terminal: I have mine since last fall and did not notice any corrosion even though I have been using it twice a week since then, admittedly mostly on flat water, but I did take it a few times on the North Sea and the Oosterschelde.
Never had any problems in the previous 2 years with a Garmin fenix3 either.
I use them as my daily watch, go swimming, paddling and cycling with them year-round.

In comparison, I had 3 consecutive TomTom sportwatches (forgot their name) before that, where the square button would literally freeze due to salt ingress after a few paddles in saltwater...

I typically wear the watch on my wrist to take advantage of the wrist-based HR (not always accurate when paddling and getting wet!) and stroke rate measurement.

Hope this helps...

Tom

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1 week 3 days ago #36301 by Cerca Trova
I have been very pleased with my do it all Garmin 645. The HRM is as accurate as my Polar with a chest strap.
Right now you can buy one on Amazon for almost 50% off.
And it's bullet proof. 

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1 week 2 days ago #36302 by pnwpaddler
Another +1 for the Garmin 645, love it. Can program complex workouts into it, great battery life and charges quickly. It also looks stylish, so I wear it everyday as a fitness tracker. Paired with a Polar heart rate strap. Connects quickly, no issues there. It has a wrist heart rate detector, but that obviously doesn't work well with the amount of water that gets between watch and wrist when paddling.

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