When it comes to buying the perfect pair of Bluetooth headphones for running, things just got a lot smarter. The latest models can check heart rate from the ear and monitor a host of other fitness metrics, making them powerful training tools.
The focus has very much been on wrist-based heart rate monitors, such as the Garmin Forerunner 35, Fitbit Charge 2, and, of course, Apple Watch Series 2.
However, our testing of the latest biometric headphones has shown them to be incredibly accurate. The thin skin in the ear makes readings easier to take, and we’ve found headphones can be more responsive to changes in heart rate than wrist-based counterparts.
It’s not all plain-sailing. You’ll pretty much need to use a phone to track your workout if you opt for headphones, which is great for music listening, but less comfortable if you need to strap a phablet to your arm. And obviously watches are much more adept at displaying your heart rate in real time, making them more useful, if less accurate, for training.
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