Measuring our heart rate during exercise is one of the most effective ways of knowing if we’re working hard enough. It shows us when we’re “in the zone,” if you’ll excuse such a hateful phrase. It may sound like only something pro athletes will use, but it’s equally helpful for regular people too. Sports tech company Polar knows this, and wants to make understanding how our heart rate affects the way we exercise easier. It’s doing so with a newly updated version of Polar Beat, its dedicated fitness app for use with a heart rate tracker.
The Polar Beat app is now more beginner-friendly, with an updated menu system, more features, and crucially, a series of tests and challenges to make sure you’re getting the most from the app, heart rate monitor, and your exercise program. If you’re just starting out, Polar has added a Fitness Test setting to help the app understand your current fitness level. With this complete, you can start training.
Using a Bluetooth Smart connection, the Polar Beat app tracks the distance of a run, cycle, or other activity, plus it’ll map routes using GPS. Best of all, it uses audio guidance to keep you on target. Additionally, a real-time data feed shows if your heart is working hard enough to burn fat, or increase overall fitness.
Polar actually does something with all the data too, using it to help set targets, then providing advice on how to meet them. The app now covers 100 different sports, making it far more comprehensive that a normal fitness tracking wrist band, and wearing a heart rate monitor on your chest gives more accurate readings than one on your wrist.
To use the Polar Beat app, you need to strap on a Polar H7 heart rate monitor first, which will cost around $80. The app is free to download for iOS and Android, and connects to Polar’s Flow platform, where exercise data is stored, collated, and analysed.
- The best iPhone apps (October 2021)
- The 100 best Android apps (October 2021)
- The best Wear OS apps for your Google-powered smartwatch
- The best shows on Apple TV+
- The best fitness trackers for 2021