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Heart rate monitors >> Sports Instruments (USA) >> ECG 5
Producer: Sport Instruments (USA)
price: 37.65 €
Packing: 1 un.
Discount: Only for register users
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Just as every person has a different body, each individual has different exercise habits and goals. Choosing a heart rate monitor is an important step. For me, it was the commitment to a serious exercise regime -- "training" toward a goal, versus just casual exercise. But you don't have to be a serious athlete for a heart rate monitor to be useful; rather, there are dozens of different heart rate monitors available for differing needs. For me, the one I chose was the Sports Instruments ECG 5.

Product Description and Specs
This is the top of the line in the current Sports Instrument line of heart rate monitors. If you've never heard of Sports Instruments, maybe you've heard of Freestyle Heart Rate monitors. The ECG line is actually made by Sports Instruments but is also sold under the Freestyle label for specific channels; nonetheless the watches are identical and are both incredible quality for your money.

The ECG 5 is a serious heart rate monitor. Frankly, it's probably a little overpowered for me but like most people, I didn't want to have buyers remorse. I'd rather have a watch with too many features (within reason) rather than one that I ended up saying "I wish I had XXX..."

The first thing you notice about the ECG 5 is that it's big. This is no delicate wristwatch; this is a serious watch for people who want serious information. With a dark grey strap and a silver/black face, the watch dwarfs my wrist (bear in mind that I have absolutely tiny wrists). Luckily the strap is adjustable and they anticipated that athletes come in all shapes and sizes, because the strap actually does fit snugly on my wrist when tightened to the maximum setting. Some other brands I tried had not anticipated that extremely small-boned people might want to exercise, I guess, and some of the (competing) brand watches just hung on my arm!

There is also a chest band. This is a black rubber strap that goes around your chest, just below the xiphoid bone (that bony prominence in the middle of your rib cage). This is supposedly the most comfortable chest strap in the industry (per two different cycle shop sites). It attaches with latch mechanisms (hidden once it's on) on the sides of the larger flat plate that crosses over the center of your rib cage, the thinner strap goes around your chest. This is the band that has the electronic sensor in it to pick up and transmit your heart rate to the watch. For obvious reasons, persons with heart irregularities and/or pacemakers are not advised to use heart rate monitors. If you hate wearing a watch while you work out, you can use a treadmill, cycle or other piece of equipment that has a heart rate monitor built in and it will display (and track)the data from your chest strap right on the equipment's display. This works on most newer models of heart-rate monitoring exercise equipment.

On the watch face itself, you have a large display. While the watch may appear clunky, especially on someone with small wrists such as myself, the fact is it is incredibly functional. Smaller watches may look more stylish but honestly if you have ever tried to check your heart rate while your body is in motion, you'll understand the need for a large display with a very easy to use readout. On the ECG 5, you see the time and your heartrate, plus the date. You can toggle to switch between the time and your heartrate as to what is the primary display, depending on your mode at the time. If you have the chest strap on, it will also show a little flashing heart that indicates it is taking your heart rate as you exercise.

The ECG 5 has the following features, divided between what is a heart rate function and what is a clock function:

Heart Rate Functions

• ECG accurate HR display - displays the user's heart rate in a large, easy to read format.
• Quickview™ time in target zone display - Tells you how long you have been working at your target zone level
• Upper/lower limit settings - lets you set the upper and lower range on your target zone.
• Time in, above, below zone memory - retains information on your workout for later reference.
• Average heart rate memory - retains your average heart rate for the workout (this is great for those of us who can't remember or don't check it as often as we intended to)
• Audible/visible out of zone alarm - if you select this the watch will tell you when you've dropped below (or gone above) your upper or lower limits. Actually alarms (beeps) when you go out of the zone (if you want it to!) to help keep you on the right pace.
• Calorie counter - counts energy used based upon your age, sex and weight.

Clock Functions

• Clock with day and date display - can set between 24 and 12 hour clock, great for timing workouts as well as for general functionality when worn as a watch. Big display makes it very easy to check during exercise.
• 50 year calendar - great for alarming for future events
• Daily alarm - can set to remind you to work out, wake up or for whatever you want it to do!
• 100 hour/48 lap stopwatch - long stopwatch function for serious athletes, works well for triathalons or personal usage. Toggles between time and laps with a single button.
• 20 hour countdown timer - great for reminding you of future events, time remaining until event/deadline occurs.
• Ultra-Nightglow™ backlight - Unlike some heart rate monitors or watches, this one's display is clearly visible when nightlight is lit.

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