The Fitbit brand blazed (no pun intended) the trail for fitness trackers. With the Fitbit Blaze, the company has advanced beyond counting your daily steps. This device allows you to track your runs and rides, follow a workout, monitor your heart rate, and even gives you golf course specs. In addition to telling the time (it is a watch, after all), you can even receive text message and phone call notifications on the Fitbit Blaze.
With so many fitness watches available on the market today, the specs can be overwhelming. Keep reading this review of the Fitbit Blaze to help you decide if it is the right fitness tracking watch for your needs.
- Many basic and advanced features
- Multi-sport tracking
- Band options
- Bluetooth connectivity
- Data saved for 7 days
- Fashionable design
- FitStar fitness app
- May be too large for some users
- Does not store music
- Accuracy of heart rate monitors dwindles as workouts increase in intensity
- Not waterproof
Don't take the Blaze for a swim, however, Even though it is sweat- and splash-proof, it isn't water proof.
This data can be viewed with the tap and swipe of the watch's touchscreen display. It also sends this data to the Fitbit app, if you choose to download and sync it on your smart phone.
As do most fitness trackers and smart watches, the Blaze has a pedometer feature to track steps taken daily. It also counts how many steps you take per hour, how many miles you have traveled, the number of floors you have climbed, and the calories you have burned. If you have been inactive for a little while, it even send reminders to get you up and moving.
The Blaze tracks your current heart rate as well as your average resting heart rate. While engaging in physical activity, this watch measures not only your heart rate, but also your distance, pace, lap pace, calories burned, and total workout time.
If you wear the Blaze while you sleep, the watch measures your sleep patterns and helps you analyze whether you had a restful or fitful night's slumber. More specifically, software called Sleep Stages tracks your heart rate and data from its accelerometer to determine the type of sleep you are having: light; deep; or REM.
When it comes to running or biking, the Blaze most accurately tracked distance when connected to a phone, because it can use its GPS feature. However, it is overly generous when used alone, because it uses your arm movement to track distance.
For heart rate monitoring, the Blaze is extremely accurate, especially in the areas of 24/7 and resting heart rate. While exercising, the Blaze was less accurate when compared to a heart rate monitor that used a chest strap. The harder users worked out, the less accurate the Blaze's measurement became.
This device syncs fairly quickly, within a matter of seconds. Data is saved instantly to the watch, and is sent to the Fitbit app on your phone when your sync the devices manually or according to a set schedule.
The Blaze can connect with over 200 types of devices to make sure you receive regular updates and reminders to get you moving.
Your Blaze will share its data with the app, which stores it so you can analyze your performance and health metrics at any time. The app not only keeps track of your workout performance, but also your sleep patterns, eating habits, and water consumption. These last two features require you to input data into your phone or your Fitbit website (which will automatically sync to the app).
The Blaze also connects to FitStar, Fitbit's workout app. There are free workouts available on this app, and paid ones as well. You can run the workouts via your Blaze or your smartphone, which allows you to watch a video demonstration of each exercise.
While running or performing other physical activities, the watch is very comfortable. It moves with your body because of the flexible band material. It is also lightweight, which doesn't impede performance or speed. The one area in which the Blaze could improve is band breathability. After a run or workout, my wrist is often sweaty and wet underneath the band. I have to wipe the watch down so it doesn't develop an odor.
The large face isn't the greatest for small wrists, however, It can look overwhelming, even though it is actually a very lightweight watch. It can also impede the movement of small wrists during physical activities. For example, I wore my Blaze during a yoga class. It wasn't very comfortable because the face prevented the full movement of my wrist while flowing through poses.
Although the perimeter of the face and its frame are larger in size, the stainless steel face frame is thin and lightweight. This helps makes the face less noticeable, even on a small wrist.
Other bands can be ordered for the Blaze, including those made of leather or stainless steel links. A nylon band has also been made available for the Blaze. These help foster the notion that the Blaze is not just a fitness watch, but a lifestyle watch that is meant to be worn during any occasion.
A slim band and frame was recently released by Fitbit to accommodate wearers that may want a sleeker profile from their watch. It is plated with 22k gold and is available with a black or pink band.
The watch bands have 12 buckle holes that allow you to customize the fit of the watch.
Ease of Use
The Fitbit online portal and app are both easy to use. Data can be inputted with the tap of your smart phone screen or the click of your mouse.
The app alerts you when there is an update for itself or for the actual watch. The watch software updates can be installed with one click and the whole process takes 5-10 minutes to complete.
The Blaze is not compatible with other accessories like heart rate monitor chest straps.
Fitstar, a workout and fitness app, can be purchased for your smartphone to increase the amount of workout available in your repertoire. There is a free version of this app, but it does not give you full access to the workouts available.
Accurate 24/7 and resting heart rate
Fitbit and Fitstar apps
Lifestyle watch, not just for fitness