So, you might have heard people talking about GPS (Global Positioning System) watches, or maybe you just saw one online and thought it looked kinda cool. But you’re not sure what exactly they are. Ask yourself this. Am I regularly involved in sports or a form of fitness? Do I struggle to identify where I could improve? Could I see improvement in the sports I’m involved in if I knew the exact details of my performance? A GPS watch is linked to all of those questions. If you answered yes to any of them, then keep on reading. If I’m being completely honest, I don’t know the science behind them and how they first came about, but I can certainly explain what they are used for.
How are GPS watches used and what are they used for? Typically, a GPS watch will be used as a device to help track and improve fitness or help you improve in certain sports, while still being used as a normal watch. Take the Garmin Fenix 5 as an example. The Fenix 5 has all features you would expect to come with a watch (only really the clock I know). But it also has a whole host of other features. I’ll list some of these below:
- Heart rate monitor
- Tracking metrics in loads of sports such as Swimming, Cycling. Running, Golf and more.
- Smartwatch features such as answering calls, setting alarms, selecting music to listen to and more.
So, you can probably start to get an idea about what GPS watches are all about now. Of course the above is only an example and different GPS watches will provide different things, but it just gives you an idea. Below I’ll go into more detail on the types of GPS watch you can get, as well as outlining why you might choose to buy one.
Golf GPS watches
A golf GPS watch is, as you probably guessed, a GPS watch designed with only golf in mind. If you’re a regular golfer or generally just enjoy the sport and what to get better, then a GPS watch could be of use to you.
If you are looking to get a golf GPS watch then the first thing you should do is take a look at your game. Try to figure where you need the most help or encounter the most problems. If you encounter issues such as poor club choice, consistently in hazards or generally struggle to gauge distances on the course, then a GPS watch could be a beneficial piece of equipment. The area where I had the most issues was club choice. I often find it difficult choosing a club when approaching the green. I could play a lovely shot down the fairway but then fall short of the green due to poor club choice. So, that’s something that I was keen to find a resolve.
I can’t decide if I need a golf GPS watch or if it will help improve my game?
It can be difficult identifying where you need improving. If this is the case, then here’s something that can help. The next time you play a round of golf, note down where you had the most trouble.. The places where you encountered the most issues. Also, check your scorecard to see what holes you had the most trouble with and try to pinpoint the main reason/s you struggled. Doing this will help you to decide if a GPS watch can be beneficial. It can be beneficial to do this over a few rounds of golf to see what is consistent.
Golf GPS watches tend to come with an extensive amount of course data, which is perfect for anyone who plays golf all over the place. In my opinion, the extensive course data that comes with golf GPS watches is enough to potentially knock some numbers off anyone’s handicap. Of course, if that’s something you are looking to do.
You can check out my most recent gold GPS watch review here > TomTom Golfer GPS Watch Review.
Multisport GPS watches
The multi-sport GPS watches caters for a whole variety of sports, which does usually include golf. Are you looking for in-depth analysis and tracking on your chosen sport, or if you’re involved in various different sports.
So, as mentioned above, the sports that are typically catered for are running, swimming, cycling and golf. Although, you can expect to see various other sports all get a mention in the watches metrics. A couple examples of one these sports would be hiking and climbing. I’ve seen in a couple of GPS watches that these two sports have had some tracking available for them.
It’s worth mentioning that you probably aren’t going to get one of these on the cheap. Some of the watches I’ve reviewed such as the Apple Watch Series 3 and the Garmin Fenix 5 are both in the £400/$600 range. Although, if you’re serious about your sports and fitness, then you shouldn’t have any worries about getting your money’s worth.
Should I buy a GPS watch?
Ultimately, it all comes to down to what you plan on using it for. If you’re just looking for a watch with some basic features, a GPS watch is probably not for you. That’s my honest opinion and I think you may just end up getting more annoyed with the watch. Simply because of all the features that come with it, which could get annoying for someone who just wants a simple, but good looking watch.
Now, if you’ve read the above where I talk about the types of GPS watches out there, then you may well have an idea as to whether a one would be suited to you. For the most part, you’ll be buying a GPS watch to help you with fitness or some kind of sport. So, I really couldn’t tell you if you SHOULD buy a GPS watch, but can say that it is a very nice little gadget to have.
If you are interested, take a look at the many reviews that I have posted on here. I reviewed some more expensive GPS watches, which come packed with features. But also some cheaper ones, for those who aren’t looking to spend 100’s and only want the basic features. I’ll leave a link below for you to take a look.