Wahoo Fitness TICKR X Workout Tracker

Manufacturer Description

TICKR X is the ultimate workout wearable. Its built-in memory gives you the freedom to train without a phone – it captures heart rate, calorie burn, and duration from your workouts and syncs them to your phone later. Of course you can still train connected to your phone too! The TICKR X also analyzes and captures your every move. Pair with the 7 Minute Workout App for a high-intensity circuit workout and automatic rep counting or pair with the Wahoo Fitness App for indoor cycling cadence. It is also compatible with the most popular fitness apps, making it an incredibly versatile workout tracker for all of your activities. Train Free with the TICKR X.

Workout Summary - Click to See Larger

Workout Summary – Click to See Larger

 

Features

  • Dual Band Technology
  • Real Time Tracking
  • Burn & Burst Training Program
  • Visible Connection
  • Third Party App Compatibility
  • Running Smoothness
  • Treadmill Mode
  • Running Cadence Measurement
  • Additional Running Analytics
  • Built In Memory
  • Rep Counting with 7 minute Workout App
  • Indoor Cycling Cadence with Wahoo Fitness App
  • Vibration Alerts
  • Rapid Double Tap Control
  • Physical Dimensions (LxWxH): 2.75″ x .5″ x 1.5″
  • Battery: CR2032
  • Battery Life: Up to 12 months
  • Sweatproof: Yes (hand washable strap)
  • Water Rating: IPX7 (waterproof up to 5 ft)
  • Strap Length: Adjustable from 24″ to 48″ (stretched)
  • Retail – $99

YMMV Review

Wahoo Fitness is a fitness product company that tries to bridge the gap between expensive fitness devices and the everyday athlete. For most people they already have a highly technical device in their pocket that they can leverage to do all the fitness tracking they need with a little help. Wahoo Fitness provides the products needed to give the everyday athlete the help they need.

I have know about Wahoo Fitness for a couple years now, but since my phone was in need of an upgrade, I was not able to try out the product. This winter I upgraded to a iPhone 5s and with the new phone I could finally see what it was all about. Just in time for the launch of the TICKR X.

7 Minute Workout  - Click to See Larger

7 Minute Workout – Click to See Larger

Testing

I have been putting the TICKR X to the test throughout the Spring. I have used it running, cycling, and working out in my basement. I have been using it both on its own and with my phone, I have also used it with other devices to test the compatibility.

Design ★★★½☆

Construction (45%) ★★★★☆

Features (30%) ★★★★½

Sustainability (10%) ★☆☆☆☆

Weight (15%) ★★★☆☆

At first glance the Wahoo Fitness TICKR X looks like a normal heart rate monitor. If you did not know any better that is what you would think it is, but it is much more. Of course, it is a heart rate monitor too. You can pair the TICKR X with other devices just like a strap from another company, but if you pair it with your phone and the Wahoo Fitness App, you can leverage all the extra stuff. The TICKR X uses dual band technology to connect for better accuracy to more devices.  This means that it uses both ANT+ and BLE capabilities. The TICKR X is able to capture heart rate, calorie burn, and duration in device-free mode and auto-sync the data to a smartphone later on. The TICKR X can record up to 16 hours of data, even cadence on an indoor trainer without a sensor.

LED lights - Click to See Larger

LED lights – Click to See Larger

Now you may be asking, how it can do this? When used in online mode connected with a phone, the TICKR X has advanced motion analytic capabilities and can capture movement. Wahoo Fitness has used this technology to really build on the capabilities of this device. The TICKR X can detect the cadence of a cyclist as well as many metrics for running like the TICKR Run can do. Those include Running Smoothness, a sophisticated algorithm that assigns varying levels of importance to a runners vertical, side-to-side, and front-to-back axis, and combines them into a single, easy-to-understand index. It also measures vertical oscillation and ground contact time which can help a runner get a good view of their running form and make tweaks to improve efficiency if they deem it necessary. If the runner then uses the Wahoo Fitness App then all this data can be viewed in the athletes workout history.

A newer feature that also uses this technology was just released by Wahoo Fitness. This is the 7 Minute Workout App. The TICKR X is able to track movement so Wahoo has been able to use it to track reps when doing certain exercises. The 7 Minute App puts together a high intensity 12 exercise workout with a timer and rep counter to track and push an athlete through a short, but proven workout. The main workout contains exercises such as jumping jacks, bench dips, push ups, plank, wall sit, and more. Some exercises focus on reps and others on staying still, both taking advantage of the movement technology. each exercise is done for 30 seconds with a break between. It is a high intensity workout, but since it is short, it can be done even on the busiest days.

Since the TICKR X also tracks heart rate, the Wahoo Fitness app can also guide the user through heart rate based workouts of its own. Wahoo calls this their Burst and Burn workouts. The Burn workouts are based on staying in the proper heart rate zones to burn fat while the Burst program is made to improve performance and aims for a higher heart rate zone. Both of these are eight week programs that simplify heart rate training. There is even a guided workout at the beginning to set up the proper zones and get even the most novice user off on the right foot.

Bike Compatibility - Click to See Larger

Bike Compatibility – Click to See Larger

Speaking of being easy to use, the TICKR X has an LED system built into the unit that flashes to help the user know it is both connected and measuring heart rate. The red light is used to notify heart rate and the blue is connection to a device. Another crazy thing this is able to do is have double tap control, being able to tap the chest unit. Without your phone, the double tap control can be used to add markers or specific points throughout the workout. With the phone the double tap can control app functions such as music playback and laps. Making it easy to stow your phone away and still have some control. The TICKR X is built to be able to be used with over 50 apps and has an open developer API so more and more can be made to work with the device. This opens up even more possibilities which Wahoo feels is important. I know in the time that I was testing the device, several new features have been launched.

The Wahoo Fitness app is able to be used with most of the newest phones. Generally all iPhones are supported, but it is important to check the Wahoo Fitness website if you have an Android phone to be certain your model is compatible. One thing I like to add to my reviews is a sustainability score. I have not been able to find much on Wahoo’s sustainable efforts. I give them a little props as this leverages technology most people already own so they do not need to buy more devices. Apart from that I could not find anything else.

Fit ★★★☆☆

Adjustability (30%) ★★★½☆

Comfort (70%) ★★★☆☆

As I mentioned above, the TICKR X looks a lot like most other heart rate straps. It is adjustable with a smooth strap around the midsection. The main unit sits over the center of your chest and attaches to the strap via two snaps, one on each side. These snaps is what connects the measuring units with the head unit. I personally have found the strap to be plenty comfortable and never caused any issues, even on runs of several hours. The adjustability has been good and has not slipped which is important, whatever tightness or looseness I have set, the strap has stayed there. I have a 38 inch chest so I fall right in the middle of the size spectrum, I am not sure if it functions as well for people on the fringes, I think it would, but cannot say for sure.

Now I do have one gripe with ALL heart rate straps. For me I seem to have issues with heart rate straps sliding down slightly in the back. Not all the time and some might only be perceived slipping, but I know it does happen some time. In fact I think it is my biggest pet peeve with ALL heart rate straps. Notice I say ALL as I do not think it is a Wahoo Fitness issue but rather an industry one. I wish that companies would just add some gripper into the back of the strap so it would stay in place. I think I may try to add some seam seal like I use on my tents to see if I can create the safe effect. Like I said, it drives me nuts. I will say that it only happens every once in a while, but I do tend to think about it from time to time. Other than that, the strap has worked great.

Performance ★★★½☆

Accuracy (20%) ★★★★☆

Connectivity (35%) ★★★☆☆

Ease of Use (20%) ★★★½☆

Versatility (25%) ★★★★½

What really has set this apart is the performance. Man this thing is versatile. You can use it for such a variety of workouts it truly is impressive.  Of course first and foremost it has to be accurate or it is all for naught. I my training I have a pretty good understanding of my heart rate as I train. As compared to other devices I have used, I would say that the TICKR X has been as accurate as anything else I have used. It can give you live metrics when paired with your phone or watch and matched up with exactly what I expected to see. Even the motion analytics were pretty spot on for running. If I walked you could see changes in running smoothness and ground contact time. I could even see how my numbers changed over the course of a long workout. Generally for the worse which helps me know that I need to focus even more on form the longer I go.

Connectivity of the TICKR X has been good but not great. This is not really the TICKR X’s fault but something I often see with Heart Rate Straps. The device has trouble picking up my heart rate unless I am either sweating or put a little moisture on the sensors. I believe this varies based on the user so it may be a non issue for some. This is not really a knock on the device, but something to be aware of. Other than that the TICKR X has been great at connecting with my phone, Garmin Watch, and Trainer Road app for my bike. So if you choose to use another app out there, I am sure it will interface with that just fine assuming you have a compatible phone. Using the TICKR X on the bike, I was also able to get good results, My cadence seemed to be pretty darn close or right on which I was impressed by. However I did see some discrepancy on some of the rep counting when doing the 7 minute workouts. this could have also been because of bad form, the TICKR X is not able to cope with bad form.

Using the TICKR X has been a breeze as well. They say they developed the device for the everyday athlete and I also assume that many of them are not going to be the fitness device savy as a competitive athlete. The TICKR X has been easy to use and having the LED’s as connectivity check has made it even easier to use. I also have appreciated how t connects automatically with my phone if I use it on its own. Of course one thing to note is that if you want all the cool features you will need to carry your phone with you. While this is common for many, it is not for everyone so if you do go without your phone then not all features will be tracked. as of now it just is not possible without the processing power of a phone.

To go along with the versatility of the device, being able to use it as a rep counter is pretty cool. I have done several of the 7 minute workouts and just having the timer and counter itself is a handy thing to have. I like how you can also track history but do wish there was a bit more reporting on performance there. Also some of the extra features do cost a couple bucks to get the advanced version. The other cool addition it the Burst and Burn training. The Wahoo Fitness App gives you an 8 week workout track with certain zones you need to hit in order to achieve your goals. While I only used these for some one off workouts in testing, it still was pretty impressive and I can see it being beneficial for someone not used to organized training. as shown in one of the pictures, the app reports back what zones you were in for analysis afterward.

Overall ★★★½☆

Overall, the Wahoo Fitness TICKR X is a pretty impressive little device. It really is versatile and can help leverage the one technology that almost all people have in their pocket. I really do think that for the everyday athlete this is an ideal device. Not only can you use it to track some of your important metrics, but also take advantage of some innovative features like the 7 minute workout and Burn & Burst modes if you so desire.  Most of the frustration I had with the TICKR X was based on how it fit my torso and this really is not indicative of this as much as it is the industry norm. Maybe someone will finally fix that. The Wahoo Fitness TICKR X retails for $99 which is pretty solid based on everything it can do. I would definitely recommend it if you want to track your heart rate and more. As always Your Mileage May Vary.

Pros [field name=iFrame]

  • Versatility
  • Dual Band technology
  • Works with most phones
  • Accurate Recording
  • Awesome motion capture analytics

Cons

  • I still have issues of the strap occasionally sliding down my back
  • May be a personal problem but HR needs moisture to track

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About the author

I am an avid runner, cyclist, swimmer, hiker, climber, skier and many other activities that would make this list too long. I started Your Mileage May Vary Reviews in Early 2011 to combine two of my passions: sports and gear.

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