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Polar FT7 Heart Rate Monitor Review

The Polar FT7 heart rate monitor is fun and simple to operate. It has all of the basic tracking features to keep you on the path to better fitness. Read my review to find out more.

In today’s environment it’s very easy to suffer from information overload. We have too much information flowing in and not enough time to process it or decide how to act upon it. The same can be said for heart rate monitors. Some people love knowing every detail about their training, like what was their heart rate when they were at an altitude of 1,000 feet above sea level on a Tuesday at 7:00am after running an uphill sprint. They can then incorporate such data into their training regiment to shave 53 seconds off their 10K time. For elite athletes such precise information is essential to their training and continued improvement. For the rest of us though, simply knowing what your average heart rate was over a workout and being able to compare that to how you were doing last week or last month is all you really need. The Polar FT7 gives you that information and more for a very economical price when compared to other more sophisticated heart rate monitors out on the market. Here’s what you can expect from the FT7.

The Polar FT7 Heart Rate Monitor is one of the more popular heart rate and fitness monitoring watches available today. Polar has packed a number of features into this device designed to help users maximize their workouts. If you are looking for a fitness watch which includes a heart rate monitor and other important features, the FT7 is the device for you.

Polar FT7 Heart Rate Monitor
Polar FT7 Heart Rate Monitor

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The Fine Features of the FT7

Though this product is essentially a heart rate monitor, it includes many more useful features designed to help users track their fitness goals and maximize the effectiveness of their workouts. Many fitness watches similar to the FT7 use fingertip sensors to gather data from users’ bodies. While many people find this setup to be convenient, the fingertip sensors are not able to gather data as accurately and richly as chest strap sensors. Fortunately, the FT7 features a chest strap sensor so that users can be sure the watch is recording and displaying the most accurate and useful information. Though it can take some time for users to become comfortable with wearing chest strap sensors, these sensors are superior to their fingertip counterparts. Also, it is easier to monitor the watch during workouts when the data is being supplied by a wireless chest sensor instead of cumbersome fingertip sensors.

Track Your Heart Rate Over Time and Stay Motivated

One feature of the FT7 that many users find to be helpful is its ability to store past training files. These files contain information related to previous workouts. By allowing access to this data, the watch gives you an opportunity to track your progress on the way to your fitness goals. This is especially helpful when you have reached a lull in your motivation to work out. Simply looking at how far you have come can be motivation enough to get out and engage in some physical activity.

People often do better at achieving their physical fitness goals when there is some sort of competition involved. By allowing you to view the data associated with your previous workouts, the Polar FT7 Heart Rate Monitor gives you a chance to compete with your past self. There is no better feeling than knowing that you are making serious progress in your fitness goals, and when you see how far you have come in your progress, you will be motivated to work out even harder.

Track Calories Burned to Meet Your Weight Loss Goals

The wireless chest sensor sends data to the watch which you are able to monitor during and after your workout. In addition to heart rate information, the FT7 also keeps track of calories burned while engaged in physical activity. If the purpose of your exercising is to lose excess weight, this is a very important feature to have.

Many people work out without knowing how many calories they are burning. When you have access to this type of data, it is easier to plan your meals and keep track of your ideal caloric intake throughout the day, as well. Because many individuals go through the day without having any conception of the calories they are burning, their workouts are not as effective as they could be. By using the FT7, you can continuously monitor the calories you are burning. If you are attempting to lose weight, this feature can be incredibly motivating.

This video shows some of the features of the Polar FT7.

Measure How Long You Work Out In A Particular Heart Rate Zone

Although the Polar FT7 does not include all the features found on other more sophisticated heart rate monitors, it includes the basic features most users need to keep track of their fitness progress. In addition to tracking calories burned and heart rate, the unit also monitors the durations of your workouts. This may not seem very important, but it can help you push yourself or break your workout up into segments.

Additionally, the FT7 can display your target heart rate. This data allows you to tailor your exercise sessions so that you are operating at maximum efficiency. The FT7 also displays data indicating whether your workout intensity is best for fat burning or general fitness. This is terrific information to have if you want to get the most out of your training sessions, or if you wish to alternate between fat burning and fitness-type training sessions.

Some More Pluses For the Polar FT7 Heart Rate Monitor

A common complaint about heart rate monitors is how uncomfortable the chest strap is. That is not the case with the FT7. The FT7′s chest strap is very comfortable for most users, which is good news for those wary of using an awkward strap around their chests. Also, the watch includes a handy backlight which is very useful during night time or early morning training sessions. Moreover, the FT7 is capable of operating underwater at depths up to 30 meters. This is terrific if you want to add water sports to your cross training regimen and it is ideal for triathletes.

This Polar heart rate monitor does not include some features that might interest a few users. For instance, the FT7 does not include an altimeter; nor does it come with a barometer. These features are fun to have, but they are certainly not necessary for most users to monitor their training sessions.

More Cool Features

  • Coded transmission – You won’t have to worry about interference from other devices including other Polar FT7′s.
  • Will communicate with other training devices – The Polar FT7 links up to other training devices you may be using in the gym, like steppers, elliptical, and bikes. Your heart rate will be displayed on the screen of devices that are compatible with Polar heart rate monitors.
  • Good size – Many heart rate monitor watches are very large and bulky. That is not the case with the FT7. It is about the same size as an average watch.
  • Multiple color options – You can choose from a black base with a silver, gold or red stripe, or a red base with a silver stripe. All look pretty sharp in my opinion.
  • Easy to change the battery yourself – You can access the battery on the back of both the chest strap and the wrist monitor. Just unscrew the cover to remove and change the battery.
  • Great price – The FT7 is much cheaper than many of the other Polar monitors out on the market because it offers just the basic features you need in a monitor.
  • Comfortable chest strap – The strap fits nicely and is washable which is good because it can start to stink after a while from sweat build up.
  • Download data to your computer – Even though the FT7 is one of the more basic monitors, you still have the ability to download data to your computer for further tracking and analysis. You will need to purchase the Polar FlowLink which will allow you to hook up the monitor to your computer and download data.
Polar FT7 Heart Rate Monitor
Polar FT7 Heart Rate Monitor

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What’s Included In The Box

  • Polar FT7 heart rate monitor
  • Owner’s manual and quick start guide

Best Place To Shop

There are a number of fitness stores online as well as a few offline retailers that offer the FT7. After some searching I found the best price at Amazon.com. They also carry all of the different colors you can choose for this model as well as all the accessories that you may want to add on, like the Polar FlowLink. Click here to get the best pricing on the Polar FT7 Heart Rate Monitor.

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