Best Cadence Watches


If you’re a serious runner, you might be concerned with your cadence. It is the frequency in which your foot strikes the floor in a given period of time. Typically, this is measured in minutes, and an ideal cadence pattern is around 90 strikes per minute (or 180 strikes per minute if you count both feet). If you’re looking to improve or monitor your cadence, counting in your head might not cut it, so a good piece of equipment is required to get the job done. In this article, we look at the best cadence watches. Since a lot of these watches have almost limitless capabilities, we focused on the cadence and measurements along with some of the key features.  Read on and make your tracking top-notch!

Garmin Epix

This one is a pricey affair, but it comes in at the top in terms of cadence tacking. It measures cadence at an extremely accurate level, using a footpod to get the perfect reading. Other features include decent GPS accuracy, a heart rate monitor and a load of interesting, innovative navigation tools.
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Quality/Accuracy of Stats
The accuracy with this watch is fantastic. The heart rate monitor is top-notch, while the footpod produces very accurate statistics, including brilliant measurement of cadence. It navigates in a huge range of ways, including way-points, a compass, colored maps and more. It’s a very good quality watch and with a decent-sized screen and a pretty good battery life. The screen resolution is also decent.

Ease of Use
This has a decent screen resolution, though you could maybe expect a little more for your money. It has good waterproofing of up to 50m, the battery life is pretty good and it has a huge 8gb of storage to give you immediate access to plenty of GPS maps. The GPS tracking isn’t as good as some other models, and it is a little heavy, which can make it cumbersome at times. But other than that, it is very simple and easy to use, with great functionality.

This is a very steep option, and it certainly isn’t even remotely cheap. That said, if you’re in the market for good cadence measurements, it doesn’t really get any better than this. If you’re willing to pay a high price for accuracy, it’s worth the effort, but you may otherwise want to look elsewhere.
  • Fantastic measurements with great tracking.
  • Great cadence reports.
  • Good heart-rate monitoring.
  • Lots of good navigation tools.
  • Excellent storage for plenty of maps.
  • The GPS could be slightly better.
  • Very much on the expensive side.
  • A little heavy on the wrist.

Garmin 920 XT

Again, you have fantastic cadence measurements here, with a footpod for total accuracy. Again, it’s a little pricey, but it’s a fantastic piece of equipment and would make a good addition to anyone’s running arsenal. It measures a huge amount of interesting stats, which makes for good monitoring and improvement, and can be used for swimming and cycling.
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Quality/Accuracy of Stats
The accuracy of stats here is absolutely great, and you’ll get measurements including cadence, vertical oscillation, ground contact time, speed, distance, ascent, descent and more. The quality is also very good, with an accurate heart monitor, good battery life and a ridiculous amount of fantastic GPS mapping settings and displays, with a compass and more.

Ease of Use
The GPS tracking here is decent, but could perhaps be slightly better. It’s slightly more lightweight than some other options, which is good if you’re looking to run long-distance, and the battery life is fairly impressive. Considering it works for other sports, this may be a good option if you like to change up your workouts while keeping things serious. It is waterproof at up to 50m, which is great.

Again, it’s a little pricey due to its high quality and impressive technology, but it’s not as expensive as some other options on the market. It’s definitely worth the investment if you’re prepared for the outlay.
  • Fantastic tracking and monitoring.
  • Brilliant cadence monitoring.
  • Loads of GPS settings and displays.
  • Decent battery life.
  • Pretty lightweight.
  • Can be used for other sports.
  • Somewhat pricey.
  • The GPS tracking could be slightly better.

Garmin Fenix 3

Another Garmin, and another watch with a footpod for absolute accuracy on cadence. It has good measurements and good stat monitoring along with great GPS features. You’ve probably begun to notice the prevalence of Garmin stuff on here, and they do indeed excel on the cadence front.
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Quality/Accuracy of Stats
Yet again, the stats here are excellently accurate and you can really get to grips with a whole range of stuff, including elevation data, cadence, oxygen use and plenty more. It also tracks stats for golf, swimming, rowing and other sports, which is good if you like to stay versatile in your exercise regime. If you want to stay well monitored, this is another good option and performs similarly to the other Garmin options above.

Ease of Use
The accuracy of the GPS is pretty great with this, arguably more so than the other two Garmin options listed above. It has 100m waterproof ability, which is useful if you like to scuba dive or something similar, and there are many GPS options yet again. This isn’t as advanced as some other options, but it’s still a brilliant buy.

It’s another expensive one, and is in fact the priciest on the list. It’s not a bargain buy by any means but it’s another good investment.
  • Great stat management.
  • Very good GPS accuracy, with lots of cool features.
  • Good cadence tracking.
  • Useful for lots of sports other than running.
  • Waterproof up to 100m
  • It’s very pricey, but this is the only real catch.
  • The battery life isn’t quite as good as some other Garmins, but it’s still decent.

Suunto Ambit3 Run

The cadence in this isn’t quite as good as the options above, but it’s still way better than most other running watches out there, and it comes with lot of other handy features. The battery life is really fantastic, the GPS is good and the interface is nice.
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Quality/Accuracy of Stats
Once again, this one has a footpod to help you measure your cadence. When using this, your stats are going to be pretty on the mark, but if you rely on the internal counter without utilising the footpod, you’re going to get an inaccurate reading, which isn’t the case with the Garmins above. That said, the footpod is great, and the stats for how far you’ve ran and your altitude are very accurate. It doesn’t measure quite as many variables as some other watches, but it still has plenty to keep you tracking.

Ease of Use
The GPS tracking in this is great, and you really can rely on this to track you and keep you updated on your whereabouts. The battery life is also absolutely brilliant, with up to 200 hours of life, which you’ll struggle to find elsewhere. It’s a little bulky and slightly big, but not obnoxiously so. It’s also pretty comfortable, which is always good, and it’s not hard to manage or navigate the interface.

Like any good watch, this is going to cost you a fair amount of money, though it is one of the cheapest options on this list.
  • Good interface.
  • Fantastic battery life.
  • Really great levels of GPS tracking.
  • The footpod is good.
  • A little cheaper than some other options.
  • Comfortable.
  • For accurate cadence readings, you have to use the footpod.
  • A little big and bulky.

Polar V800

The cadence on this one isn’t as good as some of the others on this list, so if this is your absolute priority, you may want to look elsewhere, but it’s still much better at tracking cadence than most other options on the market. Again, this is a high-tech piece of equipment with many great tracking features. And its GPS tracking accuracy is some of the best that money can buy. You won’t get lost with this one!
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Quality/Accuracy of Stats
This is a little patchy in terms of results – while it is accurate in measuring distance ran, and pretty good for cadence, it’s not great at measuring pace. The GPS tracking is really good, perhaps the best on this list on that front, so if this of importance, this might be your pick.

Ease of Use
Again, the GPS makes this very easy to use. You can also use it for cycling and swimming too. Unfortunately, it has a very big screen, which makes it a little bulkier than some may like, and the way it fastens to your wrist is a little impractical and unreliable. Other than that, it’s simple to use.

Another pricey one! Considering that this brand is less well-known that most others on this list, the cost might surprise you, but it’s a good investment and it is indeed worth the money.
  • Very good GPS accuracy, perhaps the best on this entire list
  • Multi-sport applications
  • Great distance measuring ability
  • Pricey given its relative lack of reputation
  • Quite bulky and heavy
  • The wrist strap is a little impractical.
  • Not the best for cadence

Suunto Ambit 2

This one measures cadence with a footpod. It’s not as accurate as some of the options higher on this list, but it’s still absolutely one of the best options on the market for accurate cadence. It is perhaps the most basic option on the list which also makes it the best bargain if you’re looking to save a buck or two. It has great GPS accuracy and a nice design.
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Quality/Accuracy of Stats
It’s fantastic at measuring distance and the cadence tracking is pretty good. It doesn’t track some of the more complex stats like the other watches on this list, but it does the track the basics pretty well. The GPS accuracy is pretty good and out performs GPS tracking in some of the more expensive options. However, the navigation functions are a little simple, but they should prove sufficient for most runners. The heart rate monitor isn’t as good as some pricier alternatives.

Ease of Use
It is very simple to use. Also the strap is very soft and comfortable. The watch itself is a decent lightweight option. It’s one of the more attractive watches on this list, which might be of importance to some people.

This is absolutely the best option on this list if you’re price-conscious, which is completely justifiable given the hefty price tag of many running watches. As a compromise between quality and cost, this is maybe the top pick, even if the cadence tracking isn’t perfect.
  • Price
  • Decent cadence tracking
  • Great at measuring distance
  • Very good GPS
  • Incredibly comfortable
  • Doesn’t come with as many features and stats as more expensive options
  • It’s the most basic option here.

So there you go – the best watches for effective tracking! Although this list may seem small,  all of the options listed will help you keep an eye on your cadence, and all come highly recommended.

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