The 10 Best Fitness Watches for Women 2016 – Time for Fitness
Let’s get one thing straight: the best fitness watches for women on this list here aren’t all necessarily designed with women in mind. We’re not trying to play up any stereotypes here — you know the ones — or suggest that women need a more sparkly and less techy piece of equipment on their wrists.
On the contrary, the ten wearables listed below are best for women because of size, subtlety, and functionality. Nine out of ten would be just as appropriate on the wrist of any man (and that tenth one is really a matter of taste), and you’ll notice that there’s nothing even a little bit pink here.
Best Fitness Watches For Women
So what makes a fitness watch a great women’s device?
- First of all, it can’t be too clunky; like it or not, women’s wrists are typically smaller than their male counterparts, and the large faced watch that looks good on a masculine arm feels overwhelming on a feminine one.
- Next, it should be sporty without looking like something you’d leave in a gym bag, appropriate for all day wear and able to coordinate with just about any attire.
- Finally, a women’s fitness watch should offer lots of useful features to help the wearer meet her (or his) health goal. Again, no pink.
Do keep in mind that we’re looking at fitness watches here and not just ordinary fitness trackers. Trackers are fine if you’re looking for that sort of thing, and there are a number of them that are aimed specifically at female buyers. Fitness watches are typically more robust in their functionality and look more like a traditional wristwatch and less like a piece of equipment.
So what are the best fitness watches for women? Here are the ten that we like the best, in order from most affordable to most expensive.
1. MOOV NOW
Don’t go looking for the time on your wrist if you wear a MOOV NOW — there’s no actual watch face. Instead, what you get with this device is an impressive fitness tracker with integrated smart coaching. The shape of it is similar to that of a wristwatch, but the real emphasis is on fitness.
Whatever exercise you’re doing, whether it’s running, swimming, cardio boxing, or whatever, the MOOV NOW’s nine-axis omnimotion sensor will measure your motion and give you real time audio feedback so you can improve your form and performance. There’s no advanced features like built in heart rate monitoring or GPS, but for a budget fitness watch, it can handle your workouts with (pardon the pun) no seat.
The MOOV NOW is waterproof up to three meters and has a six month battery life. It’s certainly not professional looking, but it does offer up a sporty and cool aesthetic. Priced affordable at £59.99, it’s a great fitness watch for the woman on a budget.
2. Withings Activité Pop
Upon first glance, you’d never know that the Withings Activité Pop was a fitness watch. It looks just like an ordinary casual watch: analog face, simple design, no visible bells and whistles. Under the hood, though, it’s a whole other story.
Beneath the unassuming exterior is a complete fitness tracker. Sync it to the Withings app via BlueTooth, and the Activité Pop can track all sorts of activity: running, everyday walking, and even swimming. Plus, it has sleep tracking and a silent alarm, as well as goal setting; an inconspicuous small hand shows you your progress toward your daily goal.
The Activité Pop doesn’t have any in-depth capabilities like heart rate monitoring, GPS, or coaching (though there are regular motivational messages in the app). What it lacks in smart features, however, it more than makes up for in looks — oh, and in battery life, which is about eight months. Priced well at £119.95, the Activité Pop is a fitness watch incognito, and lots of women will like for precisely this reason.
3. Misfit Swarovski Activity Crystal
While the other fitness watches on our list could work well for both men and women, the Misfit Swarovski Activity Crystal is probably not going to appeal to anyone with a more masculine identity. We’re calling it a fitness watch on account of its watch like shape, though honestly, it fits more squarely in the smart jewelry category. It genuinely looks like a costume gem, and it’s designed to fit into a handful of watch-type wristbands available from Misfit. (It also fits into a pendant, but we’re talking about watches here.)
There’s no true watch face on the Swarovski Activity Crystal, and beneath the sparkly facade, this collaboration between Misfit and legendary Austrian glass manufacturer Swarovski can do quite a lot. It’s a comprehensive activity tracker, able to gather data on a number of exercises, like running, cycling, swimming (yes, it’s waterproof), and everyday walking around. It’s also a sleep tracker, and the Misfit app gives you full analyses of your progress over time as well as a social component.
The big appeal of the Swarovski Activity Crystal is that no one will even suspect it’s anything other than a flashy wristlet. It’s priced at £138 to £162, depending on the ornateness of the wristband you order.
4. Garmin Vivomove Sport
This latest offering from Garmin looks like an ordinary watch but has full tracking capabilities. The company bills its Vivomove Sport as a classic time piece, and going on looks alone, that’s about right: an analog exterior masks a digital interior, and it’s executed quite nicely.
The Vivomove Sport tracks daily activity as well as sleep, and it’s totally waterproof. When synced with the Garmin Connect app, you can get all sorts of insight about your days and nights. It’s one big smart feature is goal setting: the Vivómove can learn what you are able to accomplish and sets harder goals to challenge you. On the watch face itself, there are two subtle bars: one to show you how close you are to your daily goal, and a reminder bar to show you how long you’ve been sedentary.
A lot of fitness watches are moving away from rechargeable batteries, and the Vivomove Sport is no exception: it has a one year battery life. And while there are also classic and premium models available, you should know that these are made from upgraded materials like stainless steel, stainless steel, and rose gold. You should also know that they cost a lot. The Vivómove Sport retails for £139.
5. Polar A360
What makes the Polar A360 so ideal for women’s wrists is its low profile. It’s not like it’s totally slim, but its oblong shape provides an illusion of narrowness, and it therefore, doesn’t look overwhelming on a smaller arm.
This is actually a really sleek product, complete with a full colour touch screen, 24/7 activity tracking, heart rate monitoring, smart coaching, and smart notifications. In addition, you can set a daily goal, and there’s an activity guide to help you meet that goal; it may tell you to, say, walk for another 15 minutes, or run for another half mile.
The only odd thing about the Polar A360 is sizing the band: you literally have to snip off part of it for a customised and secure fit. You only have to do this once before you start wearing it, and once it’s done, it’s done, but there is definitely some anxiety over the initial sizing. One wrong cut, and you’ve rendered this lovely and expensive device useless.
The Polar A360 comes in four colours, and there are additional colour bands that you can buy separately. The plain black or white bands, though, are the least conspicuous. Priced at £149.50, the A360 is an impressive mid-range fitness watch for most budgets.
Relevant: The Best Polar Watches, Trackers And More For Your Active Lifestyle
6. TomTom Spark Cardio
The TomTom Spark Cardio is a powerhouse of a fitness watch in a sleek package, and it comes complete with a price tag that won’t give you sticker shock. It’s nothing super exciting to look at just a small sports watch that’s black and unassuming. However, what it can do is quite impressive.
In addition to all day activity tracking with goal setting and all night sleep tracking, the Spark Cardio has multi sport modes for activities like cycling, swimming, running outside, or running on the treadmill. There’s also a built in heart rate monitor for zone training, and there’s built in GPS for highly accurate distance data. It’s designed to collect tons of data about your workouts, and it does that well.
The rechargeable battery on the Spark Cardio will last about ten hours if you have the heart rate monitor and GPS running; it lasts much longer if you switch those features off when you’re not actively using them. It retails for £149.99, and you get quite a lot for the money.
7. Fitbit Blaze
If you’ve been drooling over the Apple Watch but simply cannot stomach the lofty price, a Fitbit Blaze might be a decent consolation prise. It’s from Fitbit, so you know it’s made by a respected company, and really, this is a fitness watch that has a lot going for it.
Like other Fitbits, the Blaze is an all day activity tracker and all night sleep tracker. It has built in heart rate monitoring for zone training, as well as connected GPS — it’s not onboard GPS, but it can use the GPS on your smartphone for distance and route information. The Blaze also integrates with FitStar workouts, which is great if you want to start tracking some in-home cardio routines (or if you are already a FitStar users). Oh, and you can get smart notifications and control all of your music right from your wrist.
Plus, the Blaze looks awesome. It boasts a full colour touchscreen display, which is beautiful and has a lot of attractive watch faces for when you’re not actively working out. Also, because it’s thin, lightweight, and low profile, this is a perfect fitness watch for women. It retails for £159.99
8. Pebble Time Round
All Pebble watches can function as a fitness watch thanks to the Pebble Health platform, which handles all of the devices’ activity and sleep tracking. Pair a Pebble with your smartphone, and you’ll find tons of in-depth analysis on the corresponding app. More than that, Pebble smart watches are fantastic devices: the always-on full colour e-paper displays are easy on the eyes, they can be controlled with just your voice, and the interface is super easy to use.
For women, we like the Pebble Time Round out of all the available models. The round watch face feels a bit more elegant and versatile in terms of coordinating with active wear, office wear, and casual wear. Plus, a squared off watch face just screams “sports watch,” which may not be a look that a lot of women are after.
There is the matter of price, and the Pebble Time Round’s £179.99 price tag may seem steep to some. But it’s important to remember that this is a fully fledged smartwatch and not just a fitness watch. For a device that looks as good as the Pebble Time Round and does as much as it does, the cost is mostly justified.
9. Samsung Gear Fit2
There’s a lot about the Samsung Gear Fit2 to like. For starters, it looks great: a stylish cuff that will keep tabs on all your activity. Plus, because the screen is slightly curved, there are no protruding edges to get in the way.
As for what the Fit2 can do, well, it can do everything. It’s intended to be a fitness band that you can use without your smartphone in the immediate vicinity, and that’s exactly what it is. There’s all day tracking with auto activity detection for everything: running, cycling, a workout on the elliptical trainer, or whatever. There’s also built in heart rate monitoring and built in GPS.
The Fit2 has a bright and crisp colour display. Additionally, when you’re not working out, it can show a plain watch face on its screen. This device is one of the more expensive ones on our list at £200, but if you’re serious about your exercise and want a fitness watch to reflect that, the Samsung Gear Fit2 is a solid choice.
10. Apple Watch Sport
We’re sorry, but we cannot make a list like this without including the Apple Watch. It’s a smartwatch and a fitness watch, it’s a fashion statement and a functional statement, it’s for men and for women. (It’s probably not for children, though children with exorbitant allowance money to burn may pick one up anyway.) It’s perhaps a little big for smaller wrists, but if you splurge and go for the Apple Watch, you’ll make up for any awkward fitting with the fact that dude, you have an Apple Watch!
It’s all ready to go with Apple’s Health platform, which handles all of the device’s tracking capabilities, plus it has the ability to store all sorts of other health data. There’s a built in heart rate monitor, but there’s no GPS (an omission that will hopefully be corrected in a future iteration of the device). Plus, it runs all kinds of other apps and syncs with your phone for notifications, messaging, and more.
While there’s no inherent sleep tracker on the Apple Watch, it can run third party sleep tracking apps. However, this is a device that should really be charged overnight, every night. Unless you charge your Apple Watch during the day, trying to track your sleep will likely lead you to wake up to a dead watch.
The Apple Watch is priced at £259 to £299, depending on the size of the full colour touch screen; the smaller is 38mm, the larger is 42mm.
Is it expensive?
Is it a splurge?
But is it worth it?
If you’ve got around 300 quid to burn, absolutely.
What’s on Your Wrist?
There are lots of activity trackers on the market today, and there is an increasingly large number of fitness watches available, but how many are made specifically for women? Not too many, but that’s OK. We’ve shared our ten best fitness watches for women, but that’s just our opinion. Did we leave anything out? Leave us a comment and tell us about it!