While I have given due attention to the Leg recovery test and Running performance test the past 2 weeks, the more crucial benchmarks of any performance wearables is the accuracy of the heart rate monitoring sensors. Specifically, Polar Vantage V2 heart rate accuracy.
Polar has hedged heavily on their Precision Prime sensors and rightly so. The measurements will go on to feed crucial data for cardio load pro, nightly recharge, fitspark, and even leg recovery test to a certain extent. Compared to the competition like Apple or Garmin, Polar has stuck to its guns and modeled their wearables for performance use.
Having used the watch for nearly a month now in sunny Singapore where it can be rainy and sunny on the same day, I like to think I have gotten a decent grasp of the Polar Vantage V2’s heart rate performance in our humid climate.
I did 3 types of activities which I believe most people who run will do.
Outdoor runs, intervals, and strength workouts.
And here are the results of three separate outdoor runs.
Not too bad for outdoors run though I did notice that the Polar Vantage V2 heart rate graph tend to exhibit HR spikes periodically, especially in the higher heart rate range. This is a common occurrence.
Next, we have two sessions of outdoors hill intervals where I would tackle a 300m, 18m elevation upslope repeatedly.
Again, you observe the tiny HR spikes recorded by the Polar Vantage V2 versus the smooth blue graph recorded by the H10. The result isn’t bad but for a $499.95USD piece of wearable, I expected more.
Lastly, this is the strength workout which consists of 3 circuits of bicep curls, Romanian deadlifts, push ups, reverse lunges. In that order, with about 2 mins rest in between.
The results shown below are not surprising. Wrist worn wearables cannot compare with chest strap HR monitors especially during activities that involves flexing of the area where the HR is being read – specifically the forearm region in this instance.
I usually have good experiences with lightweight wearables so I was surprised this time round to see those iffy HR spikes whenever I review my data after training. I can’t say I am impressed.
I’ll continue to update the HR comparison graphs when possible so you get to see at least 3 incidences of each type of training to get a sense of the trend of accuracy.