MyZone, a company that plans to ‘the facebook of physical activity‘launched a new heart rate monitor that uses two types of sensors to take accurate measurements on your chest, arm or wrist.
There are two ways to track heart rate: photoplethysmography (PPG) and electrocardiogram (EKG). PPG sensors are inexpensive and used in typical watch style Fitness tracker take a reading from your wrist.
They project a light onto your skin and then measure changes in the way it is absorbed caused by the volume of blood.
Chest belt monitors measure your heart rate using an EKG, which uses electrodes on your skin to record the electrical impulses sent by your heart. They work best when you’re a little sweaty as this creates less impedance.
Both types of sensors can provide accurate results (using algorithms that take into account signal noise caused by movement), but have their advantages and disadvantages. This is where the MyZone MZ-Switch comes into play, offering both types of sensors, so you can switch locations as you wish without having to invest in multiple devices.
EKG sensors detect changes in heart rate faster, which means chest straps are a better choice for heart rate training. They are also the best choice for gripping workouts, which can affect wrist PPG levels.
However, not everyone likes to wear a strap around their chest, especially if they’re new to the sport or just doing a light workout. In these cases, you can wrap the MZ switch around your wrist instead – or higher on your arm to get it out of the way.
Location, location, location …
If you wear the MyZone MZ-Switch on your wrist, you may be disappointed to find that there is no screen. Instead, you’ll need to use the companion app on your phone to check your stats. However, the lack of a display means the MZ-Switch offers an impressive three to six months of battery life on a single charge.
The device can be ordered immediately directly from MyZone for $ 59.99 for April delivery.
If you are looking for a flexible heart rate monitor for swimming in the market, then you should also check out the newly introduced one Polar Verity Sense. It only has a PPG sensor, no EKG, but can be worn on the upper arm or forearm on dry land or attached to your goggles for sessions in the pool or open water.