While smartwatches now do a much better job of tracking Sunday runs, swimming, and big bike sessions, a sports watch still seems to be the most reliable companion to buckle up and stay on top of when you're getting your heart beat. heart.

Like smart watches, there are many sports watches and good ones too. Most cover the basics so you can track your runs with GPS, measure stress levels with heart rate monitors, and let you share data with third-party apps.

Garmin, Polar, Suunto and now Coros are really great options in all price ranges. So you can spend a lot or less and get something to keep up with those Parkruns or make sure you can get home when you hit a big hike.

If you're overwhelmed with the options to choose from, we'll walk you through what to expect from the big names in sports watches and what you get by passing Polar at Garmin or even trying something new from Coros.


Garmin is perhaps the best known of all sports watch brands simply because it has comfortably the largest collection of watches available. GPS and location tracking were Garmin's big game when it entered electronic gaming, and its watches definitely aim to offer a more balanced mix of sports tracking and smartwatch features compared to its rivals.

(Image credit: Future)

Sports Watch Brands: Your Complete Guide to Garmin, Polar, Suunto, and Coros 1

Forerunner is possibly their best known line and there are some affordable and expensive options that are packed with features. At the cheaper end, you have the Forerunner 55, which is a small, lightweight watch with those key tracking features like GPS, heart rate monitoring, and software features like Garmin Coach to help you train for days. 5k and 10k.

The Forerunner 55 is Garmin's entry-level running watch with a matching price tag. Paying more for a high-end watch will give you additional features like a built-in music player and more advanced training information.

Spend a little more and you get the Forerunner 245, the successor to the 235, one of Garmin's most popular watches. This gives you everything you get on the 55, but with the addition of smartwatch features like Garmin Pay, a built-in music player, and more advanced training information.

Garmin Venus 2

(Image credit: Future

In the middle of the Garmin line, you have watches like their Vivoactive and Venu series, which look like their smartest devices and both lines share many of the same characteristics. The Venu, Venu Sq square, and Venu 2 are the only watches in the Garmin range to offer color touchscreens.

The Garmin Venu 2 is one of the few Garmin watches with a color touch screen.

When you think more about how you train, when you train and train longer, then you'll want to look at models like the Forerunner 745 and 945. These offer a deeper look at Garminsuch as training load and training balance. and begin to veer into the territory of serious athletes. With the 945, you also get full mapping support, where cheaper Forerunner watches will offer simpler breadcrumb navigation support where you can't see full maps, but can download routes to follow in an easier way.

Garmin Fenix ​​6

(Image credit: Garmin)

When you want to spend a lot and want something designed for endurance activities or outdoor activities like trail running, hiking and open water swimming, then there is the Fenix ​​series and the new Enduro. The Fenix ​​essentially takes what you get in the Forerunner 945 and wraps it in higher-quality case materials. There is also a solar charging option if you like the idea of ​​having a watch that can last longer.

The Garmin Fenix ​​6 is essentially the same as a Forerunner 945, but wrapped in a more premium case.

If you want a watch that can go all the way, then Enduro is the one for you. It is capable of running for over a month in smartwatch mode and has 70-80 hours of total GPS battery life. It largely matches the Fenix ​​feature set minus the music player and full topographic maps that you will get in the Pro version of the Fenix ​​6 series.


The Finnish brand's heritage lies in heart rate monitoring and it was the first company to launch a wireless heart rate monitor. It continues to evolve this technology within its sports watches and also provides excellent training and analysis functions based on heart rate and other metrics for those who like to take a more professional approach to training.

Polar Ignite 2

(Image credit: Polar)

That's not to say that it doesn't offer a more affordable option like Polar Ignite and Ignite 2, which are designed for general exercise types and offer features like GPS and precision heart rate sensor technology. Premium fleece to track stress levels during exercise. You also get access to Polar's suggested FitSpark training feature and sleep tracking, which includes nightly recharge metrics to assess whether you're fit to train.

The Polar Ignite 2 is an accessible all-purpose sports watch that offers heart rate monitoring, sleep tracking and training suggestions.

Starting with the Ignite series, you have the Vantage M2 which increases the training and analysis features you have at your disposal over the Ignite. This includes Training Load Pro, which allows you to pay more attention to the intensity of your efforts during workouts.

Then you get the Vantage V2 and Grit X, which are at the top of the Polar watch family. The Vantage V2 is designed for serious athletesThink marathon runners, ultrarunners, and dedicated triathletes. Provides access to features like Training Load Pro and Training Recovery Pro to drill down into your training data to better define your training plans and when to take days off.

Polar Grit X

(Image credit: Polar)

It also includes tests to better assess how well your leg muscles are recovering after training. Offers 40 hours of total GPS battery life and the smartwatch features you'll find on the Vantage M2such as music controls, weather forecasts, and notifications.

The Polar Grit X is a heavy-duty sports watch that offers turn-by-turn navigation and refueling tips for long-duration events.

The Grit X is Polar's first outdoor watch to have all the features of the Vantage V2 and put it indoors with a more rugged design. It offers features like the ability to download routes for detailed navigation and its FuelWise recommendations, which intelligently remind you to eat during endurance activities based on heart rate and data such as age, weight and gender.


Like Polar, Suunto is based in Finland and although it is a great manufacturer of dive watches, it also has a great collection of multisport watches in its collection.

Suunto 7

(Image credit: Michael Sawh)

Their watches are clearly designed for outdoor adventurers and built with rugged and durable designs, offer rich environmental data, and generally promise great battery life. They're a bit light in terms of smartwatch functionality, although the recent arrival of the Suunto 7 has signaled a shift in offering to something that's a more robust sportswatch and smartwatch combination.

Suunto 7 powered by Google Wear OS, is the company's first true smartwatch, with additional fitness features

The Suunto 3, which is clearly a Suunto intended for beginners, offers basic sports tracking modes and includes built-in GPS, an optical heart rate monitor, and 24/7 sleep and fitness tracking. week 7. It also offers adaptive training plans generated from your fitness level and logged workouts and will adjust the plans if you miss a session.

At the top of the Suunto family is the Suunto 9 Peak, which takes the Suunto 9 and gives it a slimmer and lighter design. The 9 offers you everything Suunto has to offer. This includes up to 170 hours of GPS battery life with smart battery modes for those who want to track for days, as well as the ability to monitor blood oxygen to assess acclimatization to altitude. This makes it a good option for climbers.

Suunto 9 Peak

(Image credit: Suunto, Shutterstock, Easy Camerse)

It also has 80 sport modes and can download routes via GPS files to access navigation functions such as real-time navigation tracks.

Suunto 9 Peak is designed for serious outdoor training, with extra-long battery life and real-time navigation lanes

Somewhere between these two watches is the Suunto 7, the company's first proper smartwatch. It runs on Google's Wear operating system, although it is not yet clear whether it can be upgraded to the next version of the operating system, which Google is building with Samsung.

Right now, it gives you all these basics like payments, app download, and access to the Google Assistant. You also get some of Suunto's own sports tracks, including the ability to access color maps that can be stored for offline use, and use heat maps to find jogging or riding routes. Unlike other Suunto models, you will have to deal with battery life of about a day when you use it in full smartwatch mode.


Coros is new to sports watches and has designed all of their watches to be primarily designed for triathletes with certain designs that may be more attractive to runners or those who enjoy trails, hiking or climbing.

Choirs Pace 2

(Image credit: Future)

Unlike Garmin, it offers less on the smartwatch front, instead prioritizing powerful sports tracking features, great battery life with GPS and in standby mode, connecting to third-party apps like Strava and it gives you lots of stats and analysis to dig into after you've finished training. It also tries to offer much of the same software functionality across all of its watches.

The Coros Pace 2 is an affordable sports watch that offers a lot for your money with many training modes and advanced running metrics

The Coros Pace 2 is the most affordable option in the small Coros family of watches, but it still packs a punch for the price. It is the smallest and lightest option and offers basic tracking modes for running, cycling ...

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