Electronics must haves for athletes

I’ve always been an athletic person: swimming is my passion. Swimmers are quite similar to any other professional athlete, we’re just in water instead of on land. We have a lot of the same techniques and training regimens, and our mindsets are identical. So I know that any product that can highlight your strengths and weaknesses, or give you up-to-the-minute information is an athlete’s dream. Durability is key too: training can a lot of bumps and bruises for you and your device. There’s a lot of electronic equipment to choose from, so sorting the worst from the best can be overwhelming. Luckily I’ve worked with a lot of these gadgets, so I can give you the scoop on the best electronic gadgets for athletes currently on the market.

Many athletes, like runners, use music to get their blood pumping and set the mood for their training session. Although many people swear by the iPod Shuffle (it is a great product), I personally like the SanDisk Sansa Clip Zip 4 GB. Sansa has one of the best lines of mp3 players: the audio is phenomenal and the 4GB model is available for under $40. Just clip it anywhere on you and your ready to go. What I like best is that you don’t need iTunes to get your music, you can simply drop and drag any mp3 music files. It also plays podcasts and audio books, so you can listen to whatever motivates you with no hassles.

GPS watches are an essential tool for athletes: it can track your pulse, distance and other statistics in real time to streamline your routine and see real progress in your training and performance. For me there is no better GPS watch than the Garmin Forerunner 210. At $249 RRP (but you can get them cheaper online) it is reasonably priced for Garmin, which is tops in this field. The interface is simple to use, even for those who are technologically challenged and has a quick connection to area satellites for immediate data. It comes with or without the heart-rate monitor, and can be used indoors or out, making it a must-have for any athlete.

The Basis B1 is the most comprehensive of all the trackers I’ve used. At $199 it does practically everything, you would swear it could read your mind. The device tracks heart rate and calories, as well as skin temperature and perspiration. What impressed me is that it was able to differentiate between cycling, running and walking, it KNOWS what you’re doing. You can load your data onto your to study long-term stats like resting heart-rate, sweat levels and fitness patterns. It also can sync with certain Android and iPhones. I found it to be very useful, it gave me a chance to step back and review my data with a clear eye.

These devices are all able to stand up to heat, water and pressure, so you don’t have to worry about breakage. Each of these items offers something different to help serious athletes take their training to the next level.