Wahoo TICKR Heart Rate Monitor
Fitbit Versa Lite
Fitbit Charge 3
|4.||Withings Steel HR Hybrid|
How We Tested
Assessing indoor cycling trackers involved extensive smart trainer and power meter testing.
- Tested with real rides: I rode over 25 hours using 9 wearables while referencing direct power meter measurements for accuracy. Chest straps tended to track closest for high-intensity interval training, while several wrist models impressed with responsiveness.
- Compared Metrics: Those within 5% of control power and heart rate figures scored highest. I also factored ANT+, Bluetooth, and app connectivity for syncing trainer resistance data.
Best Fitness Trackers for Indoor Cycling in 2023
There are thousands of fitness devices for spinning out there, so it can be hard to pick the best. But worry not. Today, we’ll share with you a list of the best fitness trackers for indoor cycling to help you make the right choice.
1. Wahoo TICKR Heart Rate Monitor Chest Strap
The Wahoo TICKR chest strap is known for its accuracy in heart rate tracking. This slim sensor band sits right against your skin and syncs your real-time BPM to your favorite fitness apps and devices via Bluetooth and ANT+.
The dual-band tech means you can connect the TICKR to your phone and GPS watch simultaneously. I loved being able to monitor my heart rate zones in real-time during runs and having all that data auto-upload to the Wahoo app for post-workout analysis. The strap fits securely and comfortably with no sliding around or repositioning needed, even during intense HIIT classes. With visible status lights and long battery life, the Wahoo TICKR takes heart rate tracking to a whole new level.
- Highly accurate heart rate monitoring from chest band
- Syncs wirelessly to phones and GPS devices
- Connects via Bluetooth and ANT+
- Visible LED lights indicate the status
- Secure fit with no sliding around
- Integrated, slim sensor/strap design
- Long battery life
- Chest band can feel uncomfortable for some
- Difficult to put on by yourself
- More expensive than wrist monitors
- Occasional connectivity glitches
2. Fitbit Versa Lite
Can Fitbit track indoor cycling? Yes, it can, and the Fitbit Versa Lite Edition is one proof of this. Before testing the Fitbit Versa Lite Edition, we had initial concerns about whether its display would work well indoors.
After testing, we can now confirm that the display will work for you whether you’ll be spinning in a low-lit or high-lit room. The build quality of this watch is awe-inspiring, and the materials make it very light but very durable.
Tracking your fitness routine on this unit is also pretty straightforward and works in the same way as on other Fitbit smartwatches. It also utilizes Fitbit’s most recent sensors and tech, so you can be sure that your data will be accurate and displayed in real-time.
Aside from tracking your indoor cycling, Fitbit Versa Lite can track other workouts such as weights, etc. However, we noticed that it had some difficulties tracking the treadmill running if the arms were not moving.
3. Fitbit Charge 3
We loved the Fitbit Charge 3 because it felt comfortable and lightweight, and did a decent job tracking our spinning routines. That said, we still think the Versa is the best Fitbit for cycling.
The Charge 3 has a better battery life and a slightly larger display than the Charge 2. Our charge 3 lasted for a solid five days after charging. Charge 3 can be a good option if you are looking for the best budget fitness tracker for cycling.
This unit offers a variety of sports and workout tracking modes along with energy level, blood oxygen level, HR, and sleep pattern monitoring. It also has a high waterproof rating, which means you can use it to track your swimming.
And like all other Fitbits, it works with both Android and iOS. This unit has no pressable buttons and has only touchscreen controls. This is great, but the touchscreen sensitivity should be improved. It sometimes took to long for the device to register a touch.
4. Withings Steel HR Hybrid
If you are looking for a smartwatch that’s gorgeous and unique, the Withings Steel HR Hybrid can be a great option for you. The Withings Steel HR Hybrid combines a classic, unique design with exercise tracking features.
This unit tracks HR, energy levels, steps as well also the number of calories burned. The watch is also designed to be worn 24/7. Are you worried about your wrist size?. There is a 36mm Withings Steel HR for people with small wrists and a 40mm Withings Steel HR for people with large wrists.
There were complaints about things’ silicon straps, but we didn’t notice any problem with the straps on this unit. The menus can be irritating. Even checking the battery life is a little complicated compared to other smartwatches.
5. Suunto 7
It may not have the tracking capabilities of a premium smartwatch like the Apple series 5 or 3, but it does an outstanding job tracking cycling and other indoor workouts.
This Suunto unit is also good-looking. In fact, it has a look only a premium smartwatch can match. The materials used to make it are lightweight, and this helps make the watch one of the most comfortable watches out there.
The watch also has pressable buttons that make it easy to navigate the menus and apps. The buttons also have a unique design that makes the watch even more gorgeous. However, the buttons can sometimes fail to work. It’s too expensive.
6. Garmin Vivomove
If you are looking for a smartwatch for cycling that seems more of a traditional timepiece than a smartwatch, you can never find a better option than the Garmin Vivomove. This watch packs stable fitness tracking features and will be able to track your activities accurately and in real time.
The design is also good. We did not like the battery life, but it’s decent compared to smartwatches that fall in the same category. The screen is great, but it’s not clear when subjected to bright conditions.
Other Top Fitness Devices for Indoor Cycling – Honorable Mentions
Yes, we have cool fitness products in this review, but we thought to include a few more that really caught our attention. Take a look:
How to Choose the Best Fitness Tracker for Indoor Cycling – Buying Guide
Indoor cycling, whether it’s a spin class or riding your own stationary bike at home, is a great way to boost cardio and strengthen your lower body. However, maximizing the benefits requires tracking your performance and progress.
The right fitness tracker paired with your indoor cycling can capture a great deal of data to help you ride stronger and smarter. But with countless trackers and smartwatches on the market, how do you choose the best device for your indoor cycling needs?
When choosing a wearable for indoor cycling, look for these top features:
- Built-in heart rate monitoring – Essential for tracking effort and calorie burn. Optical sensors on the wrist are convenient but may be less accurate than a chest strap.
- Cadence tracking – Measures your pedaling speed (in revolutions per minute or RPMs) to help optimize technique.
- Cycling-specific tracking modes – Lets you easily record cycling workouts and analyze performance.
- Customizable data screens – Display the stats you care about most during your ride like speed, distance, cadence, heart rate zones, and more.
- Automatic syncing – Seamlessly transfers your workout details to smartphone apps.
- Long battery life – Crucial for endurance training and back-to-back cycling classes.
- Comfortable, secure fit – The tracker shouldn’t bounce around or slide during intense cycling.
How Do You Track Miles on a Stationary Bike?
Your fitness tracker will measure the distance you have cycled (in miles) by tracking your legs, arms, or body movement.
Does Riding a Stationary Bike Count as Steps?
Yes, it does. Riding a stationary bike has the same impact as walking, running, or riding a real bike.
What is the best fitness tracker for spinning or pushing a stroller? If you’re planning to buy a smartwatch, we hope this list of the best fitness trackers for Indoor Cycling shared above answers your question. Remember to keep the guide in mind when shopping for a fitness tracker for indoor cycling; it’ll help you make the right choice.
What key features should I look for in a cycling tracker?
Look for trackers with built-in heart rate monitoring, cycling-specific tracking modes, cadence tracking to measure pedaling RPMs, customizable data screens, automatic syncing, and long battery life for extended rides.
Do I need a smartwatch or will a basic fitness band work?
Smartwatches allow you to view all your workout metrics in real time on your wrist. Fitness bands only show basic data on the band but sync detailed stats to your phone. Choose based on your budget and needs.
Which provides more accurate heart rate monitoring – chest straps or wrist devices?
Chest straps generally offer the most precise heart rate tracking because they’re directly against your skin. However, wrist-based optical HR sensors have improved accuracy and are more convenient.
What fitness data can I monitor with a cycling tracker?
Top cycling stats include heart rate zones, calories burned, elapsed time, pedaling cadence/RPMs, speed, distance covered, and custom metrics like power output if paired with a smart bike.
How important is cadence tracking for indoor cycling?
Monitoring your pedaling cadence is extremely useful for improving technique and finding your optimal RPM range to boost endurance and efficiency. Tracking cadence helps prevent overstraining.
Do I need to bring my phone on rides to track data?
If your tracker or smartwatch has built-in GPS, you can track your workout without your phone. Otherwise, you’ll need your phone to map the route/distance. Most sync data to your phone after your ride.
How long does the battery last on cycling trackers?
Battery life ranges from 5-10 days on fitness bands to 10-15+ hours with GPS running on sports watches. Look for a device with longevity suitable for your typical ride duration.