Garmin Heart Rate

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Jan 2021
8:53am, 23 Jan 2021
11,219 posts
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It I get blips on Optical I tighten the strap a notch, I find it has to tighten enough to leave a indent when taken off to get it working perfectly. Sometimes a strap is better although with the cold it makes everything is a bit rubbish!
Jan 2021
9:40am, 23 Jan 2021
788 posts
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Looby Loo
Always had very erratic data from wrist HR

Think itโ€™s my skinny wrists. Once it went up it never came down so my readings always super high.

It works better if you put the face flat against the underside of your wrist. I changed for a Polar armband and I do now trust the data no spikes and actually goes down when I ease off.
29 Apr
4:00pm, 29 Apr 2022
8,210 posts
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Surrey Phil
A quick question.

I've just got a new Garmin and used it at the Brighton Marathon. I synced it to my phone and discovered that I hit 182 bpm during the race despite running at an easy pace. Charts suggest that I should only be 170 bpm. Should I be worried by this or can these Garmin figures be misleading?
29 Apr
4:12pm, 29 Apr 2022
1,306 posts
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Bowman ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ช
I can be all of the above.
Optical hr on your wrist is not as accurate or trustworthy as hr straps.

Charts or calculation is on a population in average, and doesnโ€™t match individuals all the time.

And it might felt easy, but after hours of easy training hr starts trailing upwards.

So thereโ€™s no easy answer if that was correct.
29 Apr
4:22pm, 29 Apr 2022
17,751 posts
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"Charts" are more likely to be wrong for each individual, whilst being broadly right on average. But it's not unheard of (!) for Garmin wrist sensors to give out incorrect readings.

182 / v50 / "easy pace" doesn't feel like it is within a normal bell curve of where most people would be, so no great surprise that that's outside of the range of where a chart would have you, but its by no means "nuts".

I slightly disagree with Bowman's sweeping statement that optical HR on wrist is not as accurate or trusthworthy as HR straps. I've been bowled over by how good my optical wrist HR in my Garmin 645 has been (and I've tested it side by side with both optical upper arm straps and garmin's own chest strap), and they've been beat for beat the same.

But it's definitely true that a lot of people find that optical wrist sensors don't work well for them; my assumption is that that is about the intricacies of how well the watch "fits" with their wrist, and how tight they wear the watch. The most common complaint is that the optical HR seems to closely match the cadence, so if you do have the Garmin Connect readout of average cadence / HR per mile see if there is a correlation there.

I found when I first started looking at HR that I needed to get to know my own data first. If you've got no points of reference for resting heart rate or maximum heart rate, it's difficult in isolation to know whether 182 is low, medium or high!
29 Apr
5:22pm, 29 Apr 2022
1,307 posts
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Bowman ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ช
What he said ๐Ÿ”
29 Apr
6:16pm, 29 Apr 2022
8,211 posts
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Surrey Phil
Thanks guys. My resting heart rate is around 60-63 which is pretty good hence the concern. I'm intending to go out for a short run tomorrow so I'll see what sort of reading I get.

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About This Thread

Maintained by Homer
Hi, Does anyone else have problems with the Garmin heart rate reading too high? This seems to be a p...

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