The best swim watch 2020: what you should be wearing in the pool

Health trackers and smartwatches could now be home goods, however there are only a few devoted swimming trackers available on the market. That mentioned, swim monitoring is alive and effectively in wearables in 2020 – you simply have to know the place to seek out it.

Whereas there aren’t many trackers that solely report swimming periods, swim monitoring is constructed into exercise bands and smartwatches as one among their many options. In reality, that’s the case of all of the merchandise on this checklist.

Each one will report your swim information, however the totally different designs and costs are all the way down to how a lot else a product can do and what materials it’s fabricated from. Whereas the Moov Now could be very low-cost it doesn’t also have a display screen – however when you add one the worth creeps up.

Which swim tracker is finest for you depends upon your finances and desires. The Apple Watch 5 is our present high decide, however swim monitoring is simply one of many few issues it does extremely effectively – therefore the worth.

When you have an Android cellphone then something however the Apple Watch will do for you. Costs on this checklist vary from £50 / $60 / AU$79 all the way in which as much as £450 / $500 / AU$700, so there’s a swim tracker that’s proper for everybody.  

Best swim watch: Apple Watch 5

(Picture credit score: Amazon)

1. Apple Watch 5

The very best smartwatch for iPhone is ideal for swimmers

Case Weight: 30.1 – 47.9g | Battery life: As much as 18 hours | Waterproof ranking: 5ATM

Auto stroke detection

Simple multi-sport transitions

Costly for simply swim monitoring

Higher for informal swimmers

With every technology, the Apple Watch turns into a extra critical health gadget. Together with its up to date coronary heart charge abilities, the mixture of Apple Watch 5 and watchOS 6 has improved swimming smarts. 

Constructed for each pool and open water swimming just like the Apple Watch four, the Watch 5 boasts auto stroke detection, computerized units and detailed splits that you may filter for 25m, 50m and 100m all within the Exercise app.

You may as well use third celebration swim monitoring apps if you happen to really feel such as you’re not getting sufficient from Apple’s providing. We like the very fact it has a useful little characteristic to eject water from the speaker, simply flip the Digital Crown and it will ship a burst of sound.

The addition of an always-on show can be good to see. It’s an awesome swimming all-rounder, however we predict there are higher choices for extra critical swimmers who hit the pool day by day. 

Learn the total Apple Watch 5 overview.

Samsung Galaxy Watch

2. Samsung Galaxy Watch

A daring new identify with just a few new options

Case Weight: 49 – 63g | Battery life: three – four days | Waterproof ranking: 5ATM

Spectacular 4 day battery life

Nice core software program

Proprietary wi-fi charger

Bixby is not nice

The Samsung Galaxy Watch is a good all-round health tracker and swimming is among the actions it will possibly monitor due to the very fact it is water sealed and has a 5 ATM ranking.

You may customise the data inside the swim monitoring display screen, together with your goal, what information you wish to show as you swim, pool size (25m is the default) and information frequency. 

Like plenty of comparable smartwatches, it disables contact sensitivity so you could use the buttons on the aspect to regulate it as your swim. And, just like the Apple Watch four, you possibly can press the button to reactivate the touchscreen and a bit sound performs to filter the speaker. 

When you’re achieved swimming the information is pretty detailed, you possibly can see your quickest size, length, energy, tempo, coronary heart charge and extra, all assuming you’ve got set the suitable pool size. 

It might not be as superior as some trackers constructed solely for swim monitoring, however for informal swimmers it is a stable possibility.

Learn the total Samsung Galaxy Watch overview.

Best swim watch: Fitbit Versa 2

(Picture credit score: Fitbit)

three. Fitbit Versa 2

A light-weight smartwatch that is pleased within the pool

Weight: 38g | Battery life: four+ days | Waterproof ranking: 5ATM


Simple to grasp monitoring

Too easy for fanatic swimmers 


The Fitbit Versa 2 is filled with health options and means that you can monitor them in a very intuitive and easy method. 

Due to 5ATM waterproofing, the Versa 2 can monitor your swimming and shows the lengths and meters swam alongside the time taken.

It precisely tracks your laps in a pool, recognizing in real-time if you’ve reached the opposite aspect and kicked off to begin your subsequent lap.

What actually took us unexpectedly was that the Versa 2 was in a position to supply clear and concise on-screen info with its brightly-lit show below the water. 

Though the information it collected from our swims wasn’t actually detailed, it introduced greater than sufficient information for informal swimmers and you’ll dig deeper by opening up the Fitbit app. Simply keep in mind there’s no GPS, so you possibly can’t monitor your route if open-water swimming. 

Learn the total Fitbit Versa 2 overview

four. Garmin Forerunner 935

Probably the most highly effective multisport watch but

Weight: 49g | Battery life: As much as 24 hours in GPS mode | Waterproof ranking: 5ATM

Superior coaching insights

One-button triathlon transitions


Over-specified for informal swimmers

This triathlon watch combines devoted pool smarts with general coaching and efficiency options that make it the best choice for aggressive novice swim-bike-run athletes.

The watch comes with built-in exercise profiles for pool and open water swimming, and you may as well create your personal exercises, or obtain periods through Garmin Join – plus take a look at your SWOLF rating –  AKA your swim effectivity. 

Within the water, the Forerunner 935 mechanically detects stroke kind in addition to lengths, distance, tempo and stroke rely. There are additionally time and distance alerts, a useful countdown begin, superior relaxation timers and open-water swim metrics.

One factor we actually liked, primarily as a result of the opposite trackers failed to supply it, was the choice to enter drills manually. This implies you may as well log all of the onerous work you try this’s not primarily based on stroke alone, for instance kick and single-arm drills.

As soon as your periods are achieved, the Coaching Standing characteristic helps you notice if you happen to’re undertraining or overdoing it by evaluating your current train historical past and efficiency indicators, making this incredible for monitoring coaching, efficiency and restoration.

There’s no coronary heart charge from the wrist within the water however you possibly can pair the Forerunner 935 with a HRM-Tri or HRM-Swim coronary heart charge monitor for added insights. 

Learn the fingers on Garmin Forerunner 935 overview

5. Fitbit Ionic

Common health tracker for many who take to the pool

Weight: 30g | Battery life: As much as 10 hours in GPS mode | Waterproof ranking: 5ATM

Mild and comfy

Simple to make use of

No swim historical past on watch

Accuracy points

Should you solely use swimming as a part of a normal health regime, knocking out just a few lengths every go to, then the Fitbit Ionic’s easy, easy-to-use interface and size, distance and tempo monitoring ought to show greater than adequate to your monitoring wants.

Like most of the all-round health trackers there’s no option to enter drills – so a size of kick gained’t register, for instance – and since there’s no computerized stroke detection, altering stroke in the midst of a size can result in information registering incorrectly.

The swim monitoring operate is self-explanatory; decide ‘train’ from the apps, swipe to swim (sure, swiping labored surprisingly effectively within the water) and go.

There’s a settings button the place you possibly can simply enter the size of the pool for monitoring, and the truth that the display screen stays off until you’ve set a cue – exhibiting you distance, laps and time each 100m for instance – is helpful, as a flashing display screen getting into your eye line if you’re doing all of your finest Phelps impression can show distracting.

You may as well set the tracker to mechanically acknowledge totally different workout routines, together with swimming, so if you happen to do neglect to press go you’re sorted. The monitoring itself, nonetheless, is the place the Ionic swam into hassle. Regardless of inputting the pool size as 25m, we received readings of eight lengths as 100m and 22 lengths as 450m as an alternative of 550m.

Fitbit say that some inaccuracies could come from shorter swims, stopping to relaxation in the midst of the pool and stopping for greater than 60 seconds on the finish of a size, in order that they suggest you need to be capable of swim between 6-12 lengths with out stopping to trace your swims – so it’s in all probability not appropriate for these simply beginning out.

Learn the total Fitbit Ionic overview

6. Moov Now

Most suitable choice for swim-fitness on a finances

Weight: 6g | Battery life: 200 periods | Waterproof ranking: 3ATM

Low cost, very low-cost

Good battery life

Some accuracy points

No real-time efficiency suggestions within the pool

Like most of the different gadgets on this checklist, the Moov Now does far more than simply hold tabs in your pool exercises.

The small, tremendous light-weight tracker suits into a snug comfortable, silicone strap that you just put on in your wrist and makes use of on-board sensors to trace laps, distance, time, velocity, swimming fashion and stroke rely.

We actually liked that Moov breaks session information all the way down to particular person lengths the place you possibly can see what number of strokes you pulled, how lengthy it took, your flip instances, any breaks or pauses you made, and what stroke you have been swimming.

With consideration to element like this, the Moov Now comes near being one of the vital succesful merchandise on the checklist; nonetheless there are some vital drawbacks.

Firstly, it’s a must to begin your session out of your cellphone. Most often this implies doing it in altering rooms the place you possibly can go away your smartphone protected and dry again in your locker. 

We have been typically left questioning if it was really monitoring in any respect, however this apart the outcomes are fairly good for the worth.

Learn the total Moov Now overview