Garmin HRM Fit - HR chest strap not just for women

A worn-out chest in the areas where the chest strap is tightened is the most common reason why some users (especially women) suffer or completely stop using the chest strap for heart rate monitoring during sports.

Garmin has now introduced an innovation targeting this specific group of users. It's the HRM Fit chest strap, which isn't tightly secured around the entire chest but needs to be attached to a piece of clothing (a sports bra - but it also works for men on t-shirts, and you don't have to pull it up above the belly button… Heart rate is measured accurately even at the waistline). Three clips on the HRM Fit strap ensure that the strap moves within the range of your clothing's movement, but it doesn't rub or chafe.

This innovation will be appreciated by women who have issues with an HRM strap similar to the one in the picture below. And not just them. For instance, as soon as my daughter saw the strap, she packed it and diligently uses it during workouts. 

The HRM Fit is very similar to the previously introduced HRM Pro heart rate monitors.

Garmin HRM Fit offers a wide range of features for monitoring heart rate and its analysis during various activities. Some of the main features of Garmin HRM Fit include:

  • Precise heart rate sensor (based on ECG)
  • Measurement of running dynamics (similarly to HRM Pro)
  • Long battery life
  • ANT+ and Bluetooth technologies: Support for communication via ANT+ and Bluetooth enables synchronization with various devices, such as sports watches, cycling computers, smartphones, or other compatible devices, as well as sports apps on mobile, tablet, or PC.
  • Similar to HRM Pro, HRM Fit has internal memory and can download data to compatible watches even after activity. This is useful if you don't want or can't have a watch on your wrist during activity (e.g., in the gym or for men during combat sports when attaching the heart rate monitor to shorts :-). Although Garmin doesn't officially state it, HRM Fit can also be used for swimming, but it would really work properly only for women wearing two-piece swimsuits (on the upper part of the swimsuit… obviously) – so it doesn't make much sense. Additionally, only a very small percentage of athletes use heart rate data during swimming training.


The strap is easily attached to clothing using clips. They are not extremely robust, but with normal use and if you don't twist them, they should last long.

The Garmin inscription in the middle of the strap looks like it's written with phosphorescent paint, but… it's not. It's more of a reflective color, although it's not luminescent - at least not on my sample. Nevertheless, it looks great because the inscription is very legible and serves as a nice advertisement for Garmin. When you see a woman in a sports bra at the gym or during sports, the Garmin inscription will be the second (or first - depending on the person) thing to catch your attention.

It should be noted that Garmin isn't the first to come up with a similar idea. Suunto had a sports shirt years ago where their Suunto Smart sensor could be clipped. However, it was clothing. Products from third parties even appeared where you could just clip on this heart rate sensor... but it wasn't successful. I think HRM Fit will be successful. It's portable between clothes, easy to maintain, and comfortable to wear, thus eliminating problems with chest straps.

It's currently the only ECG-based alternative to optical arm-worn heart rate monitors (such as Polar Verity Sense, etc.).

The only potential disadvantage for prospective buyers (with shaved body hair) could be the higher price ($149.99USD).

Product info here.


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