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Garmin HRM-PRO In-Depth Review


Garmin has (finally) announced and started shipping the HRM-PRO chest strap, bringing Bluetooth to their higher-end heart rate strap that also transmits advanced running metrics and has memory onboard for watch-less activities. This, of course, follows the HRM-DUAL strap that was announced last January, which brought dual ANT+ & Bluetooth Smart compatibility. However, that strap lacked the features of the HRM-TRI/HRM-RUN series, which included Garmin’s Running Dynamics data as well as the ability to capture workouts when you didn’t wear a watch. Now, all that stuff is together in one, albeit expensive, strap.

I’ve been using the new $129 strap for a bit now, across numerous sports, including swimming, to see how it handles. I’ve also tested it out sans-watch to understand how it differs from seemingly similar options offered by Polar and Wahoo. And as you’ll see, the differences are important, depending on how you plan to use it. This is essentially the pinnacle of straps for Garmin users but has far less applicability for users outside the Garmin ecosystem.

Finally, because this is ultimately just a strap – Ill try and keep this review a bit more straightforward and condensed. I’ll probably fail at that, but hey…I’ll try. Oh, and as usual I’ll send this media loaner back in a pile of gear to them shortly, and if you found this review useful you can hit up the links at the end of the post which help support the site. With that, onto the review!

What’s new:

This section is comparably easy in light of doing watch reviews, but essentially the HRM-PRO is a blend of the HRM-TRI and the HRM-DUAL into one, with one bit of data offloading spiciness on the side. It’s really as simple as that. Here are all the things it has in a simple bulleted list:

– Concurrent Bluetooth & ANT+ Connectivity (with two Bluetooth connections, and unlimited ANT+ connections)
– Running Dynamics transmission
– Offline workout support for swimming (or really any other sport) for a Garmin watch
– Capturing of Intensity, Steps, Calories, and Heart rate sans-watch
– You’ll see battery status of the strap within your Garmin Connect workout summary data (right side on website for each activity)
– [Update] Garmin has also added Cross Country (XC) Skiing Power Support as of October 2020, only available in the HRM-PRO

And that’s it. But, let’s dive slightly into those last two bullets, because those are actually what makes this strap appealing for Garmin users (and inversely, useless features for non-Garmin users).

Offline workout data support for Garmin watches: This first piece is the same as with the original HRM-TRI or HRM-SWIM straps, whereby if you go into the water, it’ll capture your heart rate data to offload back to the watch once you exit the water. That was back in the day when watches either didn’t have optical HR sensors, or they didn’t work while swimming. These days watches do have them (though, accuracy in the water varies a lot), but the strap gets you more accurate data. Unfortunately, digital transmission from HR strap to watch underwater doesn’t work, so this is all about store and forward, saving the true data for later on, rather than mid-workout. Of course, the strap is always broadcasting, it’s just that your watch can’t hear it. This is also useful for non-swimming activities where you can’t wear a watch but want a workout file; such as soccer, martial arts, etc… Note that technically speaking this feature uses the ANT+ standards and theoretically could work with any watch/device that supports it. But practically speaking nobody has ever done so. Thus no, it won’t work with your Suunto/Polar/Apple/etc watch to download data.

Offline daily activity data support without watch: This piece is new here, and is mainly for people that can’t wear a watch during the workout (martial arts, some cross-fit, other sports, etc…). What this does is essentially account for your daily activity metrics. So this includes steps, intensity minutes, calories, and heart rate. This makes it seamless between the other 23 hours of the day you wear the watch, with the 1 hour you can’t. So on your Garmin ‘My Day’ dashboard, it looks like one seamless day, even though you didn’t wear the watch for a chunk of it. Also, it’s crazy fast on how it catches-up/displays. Faster than the time it took me to come out of the water and grab a screenshot from my phone on the dock. More on that in a minute. Note this feature does *NOT* create workout files that sync to Strava or such (as some other straps do). More on that too in a minute.

So ultimately, the HRM-PRO is really as its name suggests – it’s Garmin’s top-end strap for Garmin users. There’s ZERO reason to buy this strap over Garmin’s HRM-DUAL strap if you don’t have a Garmin watch. Inversely, if you do have a Garmin watch, I’d have a pretty tough time recommending the older HRM-TRI strap these days, even though that is reasonably priced whereas this is crazy priced. But hey, I guess that’s the price of admission to data.

Ok, with that quick overview out of the way, let’s get into the box and the usage details.

What’s in the box:


Uhh…look, I get it, we’re just talking a strap in a box. But also, look, if I didn’t write about the strap in a box, then someone would be upset about it. So, here’s the strap in a box:


Actually, the strap in a box also comes with a little paper cartoon book that illustrates how to use it.


And most interesting of all, was this little tidbit I caught – which is that the strap is partially licensed from Suunto. Or more specifically, the patent around sensor arrangement. The strap isn’t made by Suunto, just one particular aspect of the sensor arrangement is something that Suunto has a patent on from 2006, and Garmin has to license it from them.


Turns out though, they also licensed this way back on the HRM-TRI as well:


Then I thought to myself: I wonder if they licensed this on the HRM-DUAL too? Turns out..nope. However, they instead licensed something else from Suunto for that strap, the connector pod piece:


That patent is from the same general timeframe.

See, this strap in a box section was interesting and useful after all. In fact, there’s other nuggets in the manual too. I mean, nobody reads it, but in this rare scenario I actually opened it up and learned something from it. But that’d ruin the surprise for the next section. So…let’s move on.

The Basics:


The strap is made of the same fabric that the HRM-TRI is made of, which I’ve found pretty comfortable (and I don’t think I’ve seen any complaints on that strap). You can change the size of the strap by tweaking the little clasp thingy.  Garmin states the minimum chest size for this strap is 23.5” (60cm), and the maximum is 42” (106cm). However, you can also buy an extender which takes it to 56” (142cm).


Here’s what the inside sensor portion looks like, which you can see is identical to that of the HRM-TRI (blue pod):


Some portion of that arrangement is the piece that’s licensed from Suunto, to completely spoil a full chunk of this review – realistically I haven’t seen any change (negative or positive) in accuracy from the HRM-DUAL there. It works just fine. It’s still a little bit warm this time of year to get those nice crispy cool late fall days though where the air is drier, which can lead to standard chest strap accuracy issues in the first few minutes of a workout before you get enough sweat going. But there are plenty of solutions for that anyway (wetting the strap, licking it, applying contact gel, etc…).

The battery for the HRM-PRO is claimed at 1 year (with 1hr/day usage). It uses a standard issue CR2032 coin cell battery. You’ll access that by pulling the yellow part off, which gets you here:


And then using a small screwdriver to remove the four screws. Inside there’s an o-ring you’ll want to take care not to damage, and then the coin cell battery:


The unit claims water resistance of 5ATM, and an operating temp range of 14°F-122°F (-10°C to 50°C), which begs the question: Who is running around outside without a shirt (but with a chest strap) at 14°F/-10°C. And then I remembered the team working on this is largely in Alberta…which is Canada. And now it all makes sense.

Next, within the comic book cartoon manual they included there’s a picture of a triathlon and a pool. I asked my toddler daughter to explain it to me, and it appears they’re telling you that after each pool swim you should wash it in soapy water, and after seven loops of the lake. Whereas after any normal swim you should rinse it off in regular water. After she explained the cartoon to me, she asked me to read one of her favorite books on a similar topic.


For the most part, you likely won’t use the HRM-PRO in the pool much. While it’ll work just fine for the ladies under a one-piece suit, historically the HRM-TRI style straps don’t work as well in the pool because they won’t stay on your chest. That’s what the much wider/stickier HRM-SWIM strap is for (pool usage). The main issue is specifically when you push off the way (turns or flips), the water pressure is significantly greater, and I’ve never been able to keep any strap there for more than a few laps (except the HRM-SWIM). Again, if you’ve got some sort of top on covering it, there’s no pressure and it’s not an issue.

Whereas for openwater swimming it’s no problem at all – and in fact I’ve used it on a number of openwater swims, as we’ll talk about.

But first, let’s pair it up to your phone. This part is new in the Garmin world, and it’s the first Garmin strap to actually pair to Garmin Connect Mobile (their smartphone app). Sure, the HRM-DUAL could pair to apps for displaying HR, but not actually Garmin’s own app.

2020-08-28 15.14.06

Once paired, there really isn’t much to tweak in the settings (devices area) aside from your bio information, as basically everything it does is in the background.

2020-09-17 17.45.02 2020-09-17 17.45.25

You can however update the firmware here:

2020-09-17 17.45.28 2020-09-17 17.46.03

It’ll also do this via your Garmin devices too (it quietly downloads updates on behalf of Garmin sensors, including the HRM-PRO):


Now, at this juncture I’m going to assume you know how to put a chest strap on. So we’ll skip to the usage bits related to the non-watch portions. In other words, tracking the intensity minutes, activity status, etc… For this, the idea being you’ve taken off your Garmin watch to do some sport you can’t wear a watch in. Then, you do said sport. Behind the scenes once you put on the Garmin strap it’s frequently offloading that data to Garmin Connect, so it’s available almost instantly – including your steps.

Check out the below screenshot. What’s impossible to tell here without me telling you, is that this spike in heart rate was while I was doing a workout (obviously), but most notably is data from a strap – not a Garmin watch. The watch was disconnected to my phone at this point. It did all this from just the strap, notably filling in the HR data for that workout, as well as updating my steps too:


clip_image001[6] clip_image001[8] clip_image001

With that, it updated the following things above:

– Intensity minutes
– Steps
– Heart Rate
– Calories

But the same works in other non-workout ways too. For example, as I’m writing this I’ve got my Garmin watch on the charger. But I’m being a dork and wearing the HRM-PRO so that I don’t miss out on any steps to and from the coffee machine or those extra calories burned.

All that goes to your Garmin Connect account automatically.

But here’s the one downside: Let’s say you’re playing basketball or some other sport sans-watch.  You do the workout and you want to save that file somehow. Perhaps upload it as an indoor activity with a photo to Strava. You can’t do that here (unless you’ve got a Garmin watch and started the activity on that watch). Meaning, unlike the Wahoo TICKR X, or the Polar H10, there’s no bookended workout files created here. Technically speaking there is under the covers, but functionally speaking Garmin isn’t exposing that unless there’s a Garmin watch paired with it.

Adding one more ‘speaking’ type here, practically speaking that probably doesn’t matter to 99% of the people out there. After all, if you’re buying this strap it’s because you’re in the Garmin ecosystem and likely with a Garmin watch (versus a bike computer). So in that scenario, you could have easily just started an indoor cardio workout on your watch and left it on the sidelines in your bag. After saving the workout, it’d then sync the HR/steps/etc data to the watch/phone, and the world would be right again. You’d have an upload in Strava from the watch, and all your daily metrics accounted for in Garmin Connect.

Still, that doesn’t mean I can’t dream. For me and my testing, I love the ability to have the TICKR X simply track my workouts and then splice out a .FIT file using the nifty app time splicer they have. But that’s more of a DCR problem/issue than a common one.

Lastly on the basics side, the strap is dual ANT+ & Bluetooth Smart compatible, so that means that you can pair it to an unlimited number of ANT+ devices, and then two concurrent Bluetooth Smart devices. So let’s say you’re inside on Zwift or TrainerRoad (running on an iPad), then that’ll pair via Bluetooth Smart, while you can still also then pair it up to your watch via ANT+. Here it is on Zwift:


And now a non-Garmin watch, the Polar Grit X using Bluetooth Smart:


And here’s it connected to a Wahoo ROAM using ANT+:


Oh, and as for activity storage, the HRM-PRO can store 18 hours of activity before needing to offload. So, with all that set, let’s dig into the watch connectivity pieces.

Garmin Watch Connectivity:


The part that most people here reading about are probably interested in though is Garmin watch integration. There’s essentially three levels/components of direct watch integration:

1) Simple heart rate connectivity
2) Data offloading integration (e.g. for swimming/etc…)
3) Running Dynamics support

Technically speaking, any manufacturer could integrate these, but only Garmin has selected to do so. For example, Running Dynamics has their own ANT+ standard (and has for years), but only Garmin watches support it. Wahoo does broadcast Running Dynamics though on their latest TICKR X straps, so those are compatible with Garmin watches however.

In any event, all three of these require you pair the chest strap to your Garmin watch, so we’ll do that here. For the purpose of this post’s photos I’m using the FR945 because it’s sitting next to my laptop. But I’ve actually mostly been using it watch-wise with the Fenix 6 series. But any ANT+ or Bluetooth Smart unit can pair up for the basic heart-rate pieces. On a Garmin device, you’ll want to pair it as an ANT+ sensor (which, it’ll do automatically for you):

Garmin-HRM-PRO-Sensor-Pairing Garmin-HRM-PRO-ANTPlus

Once that’s done, everything else actually kinda happens magically for you. For example, most Garmin watches will automatically show the Running Dynamics pages when a capable Running Dynamics sensor is paired. These are what those pages look like:

Garmin-HRM-PRO-Running-Dynamics Garmin-HRM-PRO-Running-Dynamics-2

Those metrics will update constantly throughout the run, just like any other metric. In addition, this strap works with Garmin’s Running Power Data Fields, assuming your watch is compatible.

Afterwards, you’ll find all these metrics displayed on Garmin Connect (and Garmin Connect Mobile). Here’s a quick glance at them from one of my track runs (paired to Fenix 6). Respiration rate comes from the chest strap too:


And then here’s another set from my run a few minutes ago (paired to FR745), note here that respiration rate isn’t on the FR745 (an interesting tidbit I didn’t notice till now):


Whether or not you find value in the Running Dynamics metrics is up to you. Personally, I don’t find much value there at this point. Years later, and I’m still not super clear what to do with the data. My coach finds some value in a handful of the metrics in terms of seeing some impacts of fatigue in a longer run.

Note that the definition of Running Dynamics metrics in this case is specifically Stride Length, Vertical Ratio, Ground Contact Time, Ground Contact Time Balance, and Vertical Oscillation. Note that the Vertical Oscillation/Ratio chart has a toggle, as does the Ground Contact Time/Balance chart.


While the strap also includes the cadence data, that actually comes from your watch anyway (or a footpod, if you have one of those). So while Garmin sometimes groups that under the Running Dynamics banner in marketing blurbs over the years, that’s not actually the case and is recorded already on every Garmin wearable.

Next, switching gears away from running, over to swimming, which is the secondary main reason someone might pick up the HRM-PRO. Previously, for triathletes, you probably picked up the HRM-TRI, which covered you for swim/bike/run. The HRM-PRO effectively replaces that, but now gives you Bluetooth support for using it with apps like Zwift or TrainerRoad.

With swimming, the HRM-PRO is ideal for openwater swimming, but less optimal for pool swims for most males. That’s because in the pool the chest strap will often get pushed down when doing a flip/open turn off the wall (especially a flip turn), eventually ending up on your waist. For ladies, wearing a one-piece suit, it’s not an issue, as the suit blocks the water pressure from pushing the strap down.

Thus, all my testing was in openwater, where there’s no flip turns:


In this case, you’ll put on the strap just like normal and crack open the swimming sport. You’ll want to ensure that the watch sees the strap before you go in the water, so it knows its friend is out there somewhere. I think technically it’ll still find it afterwards even if it doesn’t connect before you get into the water, but I’m always paranoid about it.


Once in, simply swim as normal. While the strap is constantly broadcasting, your watch isn’t hearing it. Digital signals only go about an inch (a few centimeters) underwater, so from your chest to your wrist is way to far. That’s different than the older analog straps that Polar used to make that can transmit analog signals. But Polar stopped making any modern watches that support that.

So during the swim your watch will show the heart rate from the optical sensor (assuming you have a more recent watch, else, it’ll just show nothing if on an older watch since that doesn’t have an optical HR sensor that works in the water). However, once you stop the watch and start to save the activity it’ll go off and find its friend, HRM-PRO:


Then it’ll start downloading the heart rate file from the strap:


This usually takes 5-10 seconds. Note that if it doesn’t see the strap, it’ll actually re-confirm with you, which is useful if you’re still in the water since the watch can’t find the strap if your strap is underwater.

Once that’s done, the watch effectively replaces (technically it appends) the heart rate data in the swim file with the HR data from the HRM-PRO. To you though, it’s all totally seamless and just looks like normal HR data on Garmin Connect:


Now, while I talked about swimming here, this same thing applies to really any sport. You can start an activity with the HRM-PRO in range, and then head out to do your thing (for example, soccer/football), and then come back to the sidelines and it’ll download it all again. It knows to do that.

Ultimately, all of this offloading and running dynamics functionality is exactly the same as it was on the HRM-TRI, the only difference here is that this strap also has Bluetooth as well as the daily metric offloading too for non-watch workouts.

Accuracy Comparison Data:


For the most part, chest straps are a pretty well defined thing these days, where failures are rarely in the actual capturing of data, and usually more tied to transmission or connectivity pieces. Meaning, when I see failures with chest straps, it’s not often accuracy per se, but the layer of software that gets that data to your watch.

There are exceptions to that, notably in cooler weather when the skin is drier and contact is trickier. That’s why most companies (including Garmin), recommend you wet your strap prior to starting. Usually once you get into the workout then sweat takes over. Of course, on really hot days you can actually go the opposite direction, and have sweat pooling, where basically there’s so much sweat straps have issues there too. For better or worse, I don’t often have those sorts of weather days in the Netherlands.

Ok, so in my testing, I simply use the strap throughout my usual workouts.  Those workouts include a wide variety of intensities and conditions, making them great for accuracy testing.  I’ve got steady runs, interval workouts on both bike and running, as well as tempo runs and rides, and so on.

For each test, I’m wearing additional devices, usually 3-4 in total, which capture data from other sensors.  This sometimes included a second strap, usually the Wahoo TICKR X 2020), as well as usually two optical sensor watches on the wrists. Note that the numbers you see in the upper right corner are *not* the averages, but rather just the exact point my mouse is sitting over.  Note all this data is analyzed using the DCR Analyzer, details here.

First, let’s start and see how it handles steady-state running. This is a 9-mile long run from a few weeks ago, just cruising along at a relatively easy pace. In this case we’ve got the HRM-PRO as my chest strap, the COROS Pace 2 on one wrist with optical, the FR745 on the other wrist as optical HR, and then a Whoop strap on my bicep connected to the Polar Grit X. Here’s that data set:


As you can see – or rather, perhaps don’t see, the HRM-PRO ramps up nicely as one would expect, and actually the FR745 does a really good job of tracking that too. After the initial slow-ramp offset of the COROS Pace 2 optical HR, it’s pretty much the same. The Whoop strap is…well…the Whoop strap, bouncing all over the place. There was frankly zero issues in that run that were out of range or norm for the HRM-PRO…so, we’ll move onto the next workout.

We find ourselves now on the track. This is a track workout focused mostly on 800’s, but with some sprint 200’s in at the end. Here’s that workout with the Garmin HRM-PRO chest strap, the FR745, and then the COROS Pace 2 on the other wrist:


In this case, again, we see it pretty much perfect (even from the optical HR sensor of the FR745). It’s also a good example though to see the slight nuanced differences between a chest strap and an optical HR sensor.  As is often the case with intervals and optical HR sensors, you see a very tiny bit of lag on recovery compared to chest straps. You see, the HRM-PRO is just a couple seconds ahead of the optical HR sensors. Again, a super-tiny amount here that you’d never notice in-person if you didn’t have a secondary reference source.


Whereas if we look at these 30-second/200m intervals, you’ll see there’s more lag from the optical side of the house compared to the chest strap, albeit not always. The first one shows lag of maybe 10-15 seconds on the FR745 compared to the HRM-PRO. However the 2nd/3rd/4th intervals are very close on the uptake to the HRM-PRO, but a bit more laggy on the recovery.


Next, let’s switch gears and look at an indoor workout on Zwift. In this set we’ve got the FR745 optical sensor, the HRM-PRO chest strap, and the Wahoo TICKR X 2020 chest strap. Here’ that data set:


In the first couple of seconds you see the TICKR-X spike briefly. I suspect that might actually just be something with adjusting it more than anything else, given it happened in the first few seconds and went away. Otherwise, the HRM-PRO and Wahoo TICKR X are basically identical.

After that point it’s pretty darn boring – all the units are identical across the board until the very end. It’s here I do a bit of a 900w+ sprint and my HR spikes accordingly. We see the lag from the FR745 optical sensor, whereas the other units are all pretty much in agreement, with the HRM-PRO being slightly faster than the TICKR X by a second or two.


Finally, here’s an outdoor ride with the FR745, Garmin HRM-DUAL, TICKR X, and COROS Pace 2, this is a mostly steady-state ride, save a few stops for canal bridges or stop-lights. It’s also in the rain at times, as well as on bumpy roads at times. Here’s that data:


So…yeah. Ok, the brown bits are the COROS Pace 2. Let’s remove those below so that it’s a bit easier to see what’s going on. The HRM-PRO & TICKR-X basically mirror each other the entire time. A few tiny differences when I come to a stop where the two slightly differed on the bottom-end, but it’s super-duper close.


Another zoomed in view shows how nearly indistinguishable the TICKR X and HRM-PRO are. Note, the last few seconds where those are straight lines of the TICKR X, is simply because the TICKR X got paused there.


Every workout in the last 3 or so weeks I’ve done has been with the HRM-PRO, and all of them are all the same here. No unexpected spikes or dropouts or anything else funky. Pretty much what I’ve come to expect from either the HRM-DUAL or HRM-TRI, just carried over into a yellow pod instead.  Of course, going into later fall and winter, I’d probably expect some minor errors like all chest straps in drier conditions, but that’s always been the case and usually solvable by applying more moisture in any of the previously mentioned ways.

(Note: All of the charts in these accuracy portions were created using the DCR Analyzer tool.  It allows you to compare power meters/trainers, heart rate, cadence, speed/pace, GPS tracks and plenty more. You can use it as well for your own gadget comparisons, more details here.)

Market Comparisons:


I’m sure I’ll see a lot of questions here between these three models:

– Garmin HRM-PRO
– Polar H10
– Wahoo TICKR X 2020

Now, let’s briefly look at the differences, but first, I’ll just give you the TLDR: If you’re a triathlete, the only real option here is the Garmin HRM-PRO. Garmin has you in a pickle, because while the TICKR-X supports offline workouts, Wahoo hasn’t implemented the data offloading via ANT+ (they use their own internal app offloading process via Bluetooth Smart).

If you aren’t in the Garmin ecosystem but still want data offloading, then frankly I’d strongly recommend either the Polar H10 or Wahoo TICKR X, with an edge to the TICKR X simply because their offloading, splicing, and sync to partners option is so much better than Polar’s. Polar’s strap is probably a bit more comfortable though for some people. But again, that just depends on what you want.

If you need Running Dynamics for Garmin products, then the Wahoo TICKR X 2020 will work here. However, be warned that Garmin has *NOT* allowed that to be a source for their Garmin Running Power data field. So it won’t work there for that one piece. If you don’t care about running power (or Garmin’s running power more specifically), then that’s not really a deterrent.

And again, for swimmers, the only option you have with a Garmin watch is the HRM-PRO (or the older HRM-TRI/HRM-SWIM). It simply won’t download from the Wahoo or Polar straps post-swim. Inversely, if you’ve got a Suunto or Polar, they can’t download from this watch either.

Finally, if you don’t care about all the data offloading at all and just need basic ANT+/Bluetooth smart connectivity, then save your bananas and go for a less expensive strap such as the HRM-DUAL, Wahoo TICKR, or Polar H9. I’ve used all of them consistently and all are solid (similar) and great options.



The HRM-PRO is effectively the new HRM-TRI, and actually at the same price as that strap – just now with more features and functions that appeal to a slightly wider audience than just triathletes. It’s designed to fill the gap for people that can’t wear a watch during their sport, or where the accuracy of wrist-based optical HR sensor data is more challenging. Getting the Running Dynamics bits comes with the territory, but of course Garmin has other offerings if you want just that piece (the RD-POD).  Of course, that does beg the question of where the slightly less expensive HRM-RUN goes from here, since that’s still not Bluetooth enabled.

That said, this is really just a strap for Garmin users. There’s absolutely zero reason to buy this strap if you’re on Suunto, Polar, or an Apple Watch. Seriously, there’s zero reason whatsoever. Save $50 and get any of the basic heart rate strap options – since that’s the only capability those watches can leverage from this strap. I talked about those in the previous section.

But if you’re a Garmin user and looking for those added features, Garmin delivers that in one package now. It’s totally seamless – and the ‘just works’ factor is super high. They’ve taken the pieces from their various products (HRM-TRI & HRM-DUAL) and simply squished them together, along with the newness of being able to contribute to your daily metrics. And that’s something nobody else has.

With that – thanks for reading!

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Hopefully you found this review useful. At the end of the day, I’m an athlete just like you looking for the most detail possible on a new purchase – so my review is written from the standpoint of how I used the device. The reviews generally take a lot of hours to put together, so it’s a fair bit of work (and labor of love). As you probably noticed by looking below, I also take time to answer all the questions posted in the comments – and there’s quite a bit of detail in there as well.

If you're shopping for the Garmin HRM-PRO or any other accessory items, please consider using the affiliate links below! As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. It doesn’t cost you anything extra, but your purchases help support this website a lot. Even more, if you shop with TPC (The Pro's Closet), you'll save $40 on purchases over $200 with coupon code DCRAIN40! The Pro's Closet has been a long-time partner of the site here - including sponsoring videos like my cargo bike race, as well as just being an awesome Colorado-based company full of good humans. Check them out with the links below and the DCRAIN40 coupon!

Here's a few other variants or sibling products that are worth considering:

I've also put together a quick list of some of my favorite or most compatible accessories for this unit:

The Best HR Sensors 2021

And of course – you can always sign-up to be a DCR Supporter! That gets you an ad-free DCR, access to the DCR Quarantine Corner video series packed with behind the scenes tidbits...and it also makes you awesome. And being awesome is what it’s all about!

Thanks for reading! And as always, feel free to post comments or questions in the comments section below, I’ll be happy to try and answer them as quickly as possible. And lastly, if you felt this review was useful – I always appreciate feedback in the comments below. Thanks!

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  1. vicent

    I’m not going to buy this garmin strap, I don’t need it.

    What I bought from your review is the “daddy Tries” book! Thanks for showing it! I’m sure my girls will love it :)

    • It’s a great book!

      And, fun fact, it’s actually written by a long-time DCR reader! We got it for my kids two years ago and they love it.

    • Enrique navarrette

      Hi DC, as a young triathlete (16) I have a few questions, firstly I cannot afford the higherend Garmin watches that said I am wanting to get into the garmin ecosystem, I plan on getting the fr35 and Hrm pro but i do not know if these are compatible. Secondly is it safe to use the fr35 for surface saltwater open water swimming, and lastly. How would I be able to upload the swim metrics to strava since the fr35 doesn’t have a swim profile, my guess is to connect the hrm and start a “cardio” activity and then later upload this activity to strava via “link other services”, sorry for so many questions but I’m really lost as a beginner and need some help.

  2. Volker

    As usual, great detailed review. Amazon.de has the tri for 87€ link to amazon.de

    • Volker

      Ok, you get it even cheaper < 80€

    • Yeah, the official list price is $129 for the HRM-TRI. Without MAP pricing in Europe it’s honestly hard to compare anything from a pricing standpoint.

      I think the HRM-TRI is still a great option for a purely Garmin user who doesn’t need BT connectivity.

    • Volker

      Yeah. I still use a very old Garmin ant+ HR strap, I only need HR data, nothing more. I think with the next generation, you can phone or cook coffee, start the laundry… :)

  3. Daniel Kroboth

    What features are supported with older Garmin watch (i.e. 230) or with Edge cycling computers? I would love to get Running Dynamics data somehow (and I am resigned to buying a new watch at some point)

  4. patrick

    Thanks for the review, Ray. Detailed as always. The 2nd gen Tickr X has been out of stock for months now, so garmin is going to get my $100(ish). Apologies if I missed it, but does the HRM-Pro transmit HRV data? Something I could use for Elite-HRV?


  5. I’m going to read this review but my experience with previous straps in this design have been terrible. I went through 2 HRM-RUNs and an HRM-TRI. Every single one failed after I changed the battery. I’m assuming a bad seal on battery changes resulted in water getting in and breaking them. But that’s just not acceptable. Ray, what’s your experience with that?

    • I’ve been pretty good with this strap design through multiple battery changes (mainly on my HRM-TRI, which I used a moderate amount for years). I did have one HRM-SWIM from a number of years ago get finicky, but I’m honestly not sure if that was a bad battery swap, or something else.

    • Phillip Rentschler

      Agree 100% about the HRM units failing after battery changes. Also went through two units that leaked due to poor case / o-ring design and then they’re toast. Not possible to repair. Such a waste.
      Pity, because they are otherwise extremely accurate, producing helpful data.
      I had hoped Garmin would fix that design issue, but here we go again.
      Using the Tickr X now, but spikes and dropouts are the order of the day.

    • Matthew Fields

      I’ve had two HRM-TRIs go bad on me too. Luckily Garmin replaced the most recent one, but it’s annoying burning through straps so easily.

    • At least I know I’m not crazy. I’ve kinda given up on the design. I actually have more comfort with the HRM-DUAL but I’m worried about what will happen when I do change that one too. I never really got any value from the dynamics so I wear either the dual or my scosche depending on what I can find at that moment

    • Duncan74

      And another here with HRM-run. Had 2 fail already. First one after 15 months, second after 7 months. The first one managed 2 battery changes before death but the second one didn’t last any where near as long, then it dies a few weeks after the second change. The second strap went about 4 weeks after. Note that I was meticulous with the change and reseal of the second strap. Also have a clubmate that had same thing happen after his first change. What annoyed me the most is after contacting Garmin on 4 July, it took until 2 weeks ago, and the day before I’d stated I was opening a small claims court action for them to honour their warranty. So I’ve now paid for 3 of these straps, and in reality they have a very limited life as the battery change results in imminent death. I don’t use the strap for swimming outside 2 races a year, just lots of running and cycling. And contemplating reverting to an dumb old one for cycling.

    • Beeees

      Same story here – on my 4th SWIM and 3rd TRI. All of those failures were within the first year so Garmin warrantied each one. But wow, I’m underwhelmed by this following the same design.

    • Claudio Bellu

      I pass through 3 HRM-Tri, loved the accuracy but same issue with leaking and dead quickly. I was looking forward new version but unfortunately the case looks exactly same. I am also keep using Tickr X until Garmin release a better version

    • This is my experience with the HRM-RUN too. I sweat a lot, and it is particularly toxic, I don’t think chest straps like me at all.

      Unfortunately, I bought the TICKR and X, and they have been absolutely awful. Both have issues locking in on an HR, both of them have flat lines for 1-2 mins throughout an activity multiple times. The TICKR was replaced just after a month, it has been better since, but still problematic.

      I have had to take the TICKR X mid-run more times than I have completed a run with it.

      As much as I hate the HRM-RUN for dying so quickly, at least it is consistently good up until that point.
      The Polar OH1 is the only device that has survived multi-year use. Think I will continue using that for indoor stuff, and may consider the TRI for outdoor runs and rides.

    • Tellef

      When changing battery, you must do a new search for HR sensors. The watch will not find the HRM-run or –tri even if the same sensor is stored on your device. The same thing applies with Edge cycling computers. So deleate the stored HR sensor when changing battery, do a new search, and it will probably be good!

    • Duncan74

      Tellef, thanks for trying, but the issue isn’t that. Yes, that’s needed, but the issue is that the electronics get fried and the battery drains constantly / the HR is reported at maxed out 227bpm regardless. Resets don’t work. You swap the battery and it’s fine for a while – weeks, months and then dies.

    • Tellef

      I have also experienced that. Afrer a hard run, I put the wet belt in my bag and pedaled very easy home. When uploading the ride, it is in the red sone all the way, with a new max heart rate almost 100 bpm over my correct max. With other belts I just disconnect one of the contacts between sensor and belt. Very disappointing that Garmin did not make the HRM-pro like the HRM-duo, with a dismountable sensor

    • Yes, that is my major problem with the design. The pod design lets me turn off the sensor if I unmount it and I don’t see what advantage the integrated design provides at all. I also do not have an issue with re-pairing it…its simply that after a battery swap the sensor basically starts going through batteries every couple of weeks as if it never turns off.

    • FabioNR

      The advantage of the integrated design is that you have to buy the whole thing instead of just buying a replacement strap and keeping the pod. What? You meant advantages for the consumer and not Garmin? Oh, I’m sorry…

    • Samer

      I had the same issue with HRM, stop working after 5 month.

    • Samer

      I agree Garmin should fix the design issue. I had same issue, I do not recommend HRM due battery issues and limited product life use.

    • PureZOOG

      Out of curiosity just looked at when I purchased my HRM-Tri, which was March 2017. It’s been in use since then almost everyday, sometimes multiple times a day, with at least four battery changes in that time, and it’s still working like the day I purchased it. I ‘spose it’s possible the quality has dropped on the newer ones (I do remember they did away with the blue semi-sticky surroundy bits that surrounded the sensors, so they could have done something else too) which would be a shame. I’ve probably jinxed it now lol.

    • glaukos

      I’ll add my voice to the chorus. I too am disappointed that they didn’t make any changes from the HRM-TRI design. I’m on my third HRM-TRI now. After every battery change it’s a coin-flip whether the strap will completely die after its next good soaking. It’s a flawed design.

    • GLT

      While I’m not super enthusiastic about the physical design of the HRM-Tri (and now HRM-Pro), I’ve never had one fail me either. I track the date of my battery changes to see if a particular brand of battery is superior, and I’ve changed the battery in my HRM-Tri five times without issue. All fresh batteries are about the same for me BTW.

      For those that have had failures, did it seem like the gasket around the battery was out of place or damaged? Or did everything look normal and the HRM just didn’t work?

      The gasket does want to pop off & bounce all over the place. I manage my caffeine & set aside ten minutes to perform the change at a careful & deliberate pace. My closure process is to spin each of the four screws in “finger tight” initially, then do one pass to gently snug them up. There is usually one random screw that apparently backs out slightly by the time the fourth one is in.

      I don’t imagine it matters, but if the rubber bumper is gross, I wash it off before snapping it back on.

    • Brian Martin

      Same exact issue on every single HRM-RUN I have owned; on the 4th one now. I purchased the first two and Garmin replaced for me on 3 and 4; I thought it was my fault the fist time, then I research and saw lots of people with the issue. They know it’s an issue but don’t appear to do anything about it. I guess I’ll just keep sending them in…

      And my many years old backup Garmin Premium strap just keeps working, battery replacement after battery replacement.

    • Peter

      I am very late to the party here, but hopefully this helps someone who stumbles across this thread researching garmin issues. I have given up on Garmin HRMs after a HRM-RUN and a HRM-TRI both died on me after about a year. It is not actually the red gasket which fails, it is a flaw in the design which results in the top RH side of the pod cracking and letting in sweat.

      Google this phrase to see a thread from another user on garmin forums: “HRM-Tri micro cracks always on upper right screw – design flaw or user improper use?”. Note the similar type of crack compared to my attached image (the background is similar, but they are different units).

    • Sean Battis

      I’ll just pile on that my 4th HRM Tri has died, this one 6 months after Garmin sent it as a replacement. I was hoping the Pro would potentially break me out of this cycle, but the discussion doesn’t leave me hopeful. Have people seen the same death rate with the Pro? A lot of the comments here are still about the TRI/RUN. I’ve tried the TICKER X, but it rubbed my chest raw :(

    • I don’t think we’ve seen any comments here on HRM-PRO build quality/hardware failures, though perhaps I’ve missed it. It came out last September, so we’re rounding near a year now.

      I think all the comments related to build quality/hardware in the 316 comments on the review such far, have actually been from people with HRM-TRI/RUN straps (as most of them have noted). Not taking away from that, just noting it.

    • Nate C

      I suspect that most would just be getting to the point where they’re having to break the seal and install new batteries (I personally use a different HRM on the bike, in part so that I use the battery on my HRM Run less, in order to reduce the incidence of battery replacement and subsequent failure).

      But the fact that the pod is attached to the strap, and the strap is a consumable with an expected life MUCH shorter than how long a pod should work with a few battery swaps should make this HRM a non-starter when deciding whether it’s worth the money.

      Not to mention the design with the little screws which become stripped or crack the case. Their old HRMs and the TICKR and countless other devices use the quarter-turn gasketed lid which is more durable and reliable.

      We consumers need to vote with our money and stop buying products like this which don’t appear to have been updated to address design issues identified on previous versions, and Ray can use his great platform to call manufacturers out on this type of planned obsolescence.

    • The problem is though, we don’t really have any meaningful data to say this strap design is actually worse than others. The reason is because we only see unit counts, but not total sales. We do know that Garmen sells exponentially more straps than Wahoo (to use your example), as in, not even in the same ballpark. So as always, it’s easy to point to the comments we see about broken pod straps, and assume it’s breaking more than others. Or not. We just don’t know because they sell so many more straps than others.

      But the challenge is more specific than that. The HRM-PRO strap is for swimming (as was the HRM-SWIM/TRI strap), and as such need to be able to withstand different conditions than a typical TICKR, which likely wouldn’t last daily pool usage for very long. But of course, we don’t know that because nobody does that because there’s no reason to, because it wouldn’t be very useful that way.

      As much as a few people might dislike the concept of it, a lot of people like that pod design. Specifically women, as it tends to reduce the scratching and chest cutting that can often happen in a TICKR-like design, where two pieces come together. Wahoo’s newer straps are a bit better that way than past ones, but it’s worth pointing out

      Garmin doesn’t tend to stick with designs that cost them money in support fees. They’re a financially conservative company that way. We saw them constantly tweak the Vector pedal design to eventually eliminate design issues. And while that’s a far more expensive product, it’s also one that sells but a tiny fraction the number of units of HRM-PRO/TRI/RUN/SWIM straps.

      Now, a valid question is whether the trade-offs of a built-in pod outweigh the concerns of a built-in pod. As noted, there are good reasons to have it from a waterproofing standpoint. In fact, if one remembers to the days that Polar sold the coded T31 straps designed for swim use – they too had built-in pods to the transmitter side. But I don’t think that’s actually planned obsolescence – a term that often gets inaccurately thrown around. In this case it’s a consumer trade-off between different features, even if folks don’t realize they are actually making that choice (such as waterproofing for long term use).

      Anyway, food for thought…

    • Nate C

      Ray, thanks for taking the time to reply with your thoughts and analysis. I agree with you that it wouldn’t make sense for Garmin to stick with a design that incurs higher support costs (unless the higher costs are dwarfed by the additional profits they can make by selling everyone a new combo pod/strap every two years after the warranty is up instead of the 5+ a pod should last at the current rate of technologic advancement). Perhaps they have even calculated that the customers will still keep buying Garmin for reasons of integration (they are still the only company with Running Dynamics, right?) or not knowing that their Garmin watches are compatible with any ant+ HRM.

      Good point about some people’s preference for the reduced chafing of the side closure Garmin strap compared to the generic/wahoo strap where the ends snap onto the pod. But I would counter that it’s still possible to use Garmin’s side-fasten strap design with a removable pod to facilitate laundry and strap replacement when the elastic or sensor electrode surfaces wear out (just like the original HRM Run design with removable pod/strap)… And there shouldn’t have to be a tradeoff of waterproofing vs removable strap in this case, as they could design whatever hardy battery door/gasket system they like, as long as it has the metal nubs at the right pitch to mate with any strap you prefer.

      Either way, it seems from the number of failure reports that they missed an opportunity for iteration/improvement when they released the current generation, and I’m personally hoping that my original tickr and original HRM Run keep on ticking until a more reliable solution has been developed/released.

    • GLT

      Prior HRM-Tri lasted through five battery changes before cracking the backplate at the lower right screw point. I had hopes that the rubber bumper would seal things well enough to use out of the pool, but no such luck.

      Just changed out the factory Maxell CR2032 in the HRM-Pro this week. Battery had a parent-child logo on it but did not taste bitter. Being aware of the history of faults with the older model I did treat the pod gently with light pressure applied to the center of the faceplate and no downward pressure applied to the screws at all. Let the threads do the work and halted at the point any resistance at all was apparent. So far so good.

      The various devices & GC battery summary gave low battery warnings about eight activity hours before it cease being operable.

    • David

      That upper right screw mount is more pronounced than the others – if you look at the inside of the cover plate you’ll see that one of the screw holes is recessed. The cover plate is not reversible – there is an up and downside.

    • Fabe56

      Sadly, I have the impression that the problem persists on the HRM-Pro, I got mine in May 2020 using the chest for more or less 130 hours. Changed the battery 2 weeks ago and the chest die in the middle of an activity, providing unrealistic HR data since the failure (ant+ or BLE).
      I spotted rust in the screw thread, so before the gasket, visible rust on the outside letting me think that it is also inside on the circuits :-/

    • Christian

      I is 2022 and I find myself writing a comment on blog from 2020 saying that I consider to buy the HR belt from 2019 which you think nobody would buy… I have two broken devices HR belts from garmin: the old version of the HRM RUN broke after 5-6 years and the newer (but already discontinued) red version. I shifted to the new version since garmin promised they improved the actual belt to be better and last longer. Although one can exchange the belt with the old version they did not last very long (I used the cheap ones from Polar) and then again some spikes drove me crazy. Now first the newer and finally also the old both ended their support with the battery drain problem. I can add a new battery and finish 1 run. On the next day the battery will be empty. After reading about this issue I guess that water entered. At least the red shows cracks near the screw and this really seems to be the problem of these belts. My concern is now that if I buy the HRM pro with a very similar design most likely it will die right after 2 years. Is there anything new coming up this year? Otherwise I will buy the 50€ HRM Dual belt which claims it will work (OK, maybe not the belt but at least the device) for 3,5 years before I screw it up upon a battery exchange

    • Tommy Meyers

      Hi Ray,

      I know this is an old post but I figure that may work to my advantage. In my experience, I’ve had terrible issues with longevity using both the HRM Tri and Pro. To their credit Garmin have always warranteed them but I’ve been through nearly a dozen units! It seems that they just die after a while with little to no warning. Sometimes this is after changing the battery—which I do properly (Garmin has insisted on walking me through the whole process several times). However more often than not, they just die.
      I’ve seen a few posts about this on some forums, but it seems like an issue not getting much attention, despite loads of my friends and acquaintances having the same issue. Any advice?


    • Nate C

      My advice would be to not buy Garmin HRM with irreplaceable straps and bad battery sealing designs, once the free warranty replacements dry up.

      I still have two older HRM Tri with replaceable straps in the rotation. They also have the stupid design of screws into plastic posts which give out, so I don’t swim in them (but have an HRM swim for that) but they’ve lasted through countless battery replacements and new straps. My Tickr I wear on the bike has done the same and has the quarter screw battery cap which seems to seal nicely. Polar’s H10 has a replaceable strap (but stupidly was designed for a 2025 instead of 2032 battery) and two BT signals and Ant+ and paired with an Rd pod, you get the same metrics as Garmin’s HRM pro (except for watch-less recording, which isn’t a feature that many of us need anyway). You can also pair a $30 generic ant+/BLE HRM and the Rd pod.

      It seems like Garmin has done the math and decided that it’s worth more to them to sell $99 HRMs to people who don’t know any better, and do the warranty replacements on a few people who have issues within the warranty period or contact them sufficiently outraged out of warranty, while most don’t even contact Garmin and just buy a new one every year or two. With the margins (compared to non-name brand) they can probably afford to replace 2-3 for every model sold and still make a profit.

      So the only person who is hurt by this is the consumer who has to deal with the hassle/costs of the planned obsolescence, and of course the environment as our landfills fill up with e-waste which could have been avoided.

    • Tommy Meyers

      You’re not wrong. In fairness I’ve only bought 1-2 of the 12ish that have died. It just pisses me off how poor the design is. If nothing else it’s wasteful. I just warranteed a different one, as I’ve now got a couple in the cycle, last week and was complaining about the poor design. I’d go with a third party but then you lose out with some of the “bouncy metrics” for running and run power. You’re right. It only hurts the consumer. But I’ll do my part and keep warranteeing them

    • Nate C

      If you’re just interested in the bouncy metrics, check out the RD Pod. You can us it with a $30 generic ant+/BLE Hrm and get the same metrics as HRM Run/Tri. (Of course it’s one more thing to lose or to replace batteries in… I picked one up in anticipation that my old-school HRM runs with replaceable straps will one day die for good, and

      I’ve also stocked up on discontinued ant+ footpods since that seems to be a concept that has died without a viable replacement either – would consider Stryd if it wasn’t so expensive and the rechargeable batteries didn’t lose too much capacity after a few years, per reports and their run power was natively supported.

    • Tommy Meyers

      Yeah again you’re right but it’s all unnecessarily complicated. They just need to fix the concept. A detachable pod with a quarter turn battery mount and some status LEDs. It’s just stupid.

    • Tong

      +1 (now i prefer inacccuracy of watch heartbeat instead of this expensive belt ..)

    • Fabe56

      A few moments later…

      Here we go, the support from Garmin changes my default HRM Pro last December! We are now in September 2022, HRM Pro start weird things shortly after the update 9.33 on my Fenix 7, i.e. I get somes 140 bpm FC recording from my chest weirst during the night while I sleep and not wearing it, the chest was in my bathroom (I slept in my bedroom yes) Because of thoses randoms connection, the battery drain… I remove the yellow protection, first time since I have it, first battery change, never open the case, and guess what I see in the upper left corner: rust…

  6. Alex Johnson

    Would you get HR consolidation of an activity with a watch for an activity such as strength training. I.e. if I was doing crossfit and started an activity on my instinct but left it in my gym bag out of range. Would the watch download that heart rate data into the workout file once I returned to the instinct and save the activity?

  7. Martin

    I like Garmin’s sleep metrics but hate sleeping with my Fenix watch. Would you recommend the strap for sleep metrics? Would it record it as sleep metrics and would it be more comfortable to sleep with than the Fenix?

    • pavlinux

      “Stand-alone activity monitoring (steps, all-day heart rate, calories and intensity minutes)”

      Night heart rate?

    • Technically yup. As long as you’re wearing it,it’ll save HR data to your account. I did exactly that for 2-3 hours today at the office, not wearing a Garmin watch. It’s seamless in my account.

    • GLT

      Side-sleepers may not get data worth the battery drain wearing HRM over night. Collected a week’s worth of data a few years ago & found the strap electrodes tend to lose contact after rolling over to either side. Tightening the strap wasn’t effective for me.

      Moving the OHR watch to the ankle works if the sleeper is idle enough to keep the sensor pointed in the correct location.

  8. Stephen

    I got the FR 745 and HRM PRO. Currently using FR630 and HRM RUN.

    Realizing it’s bit worth the change at all is it ? Or am I missing something ?

    Boy I miss the touch screen of the 630 also.

    Thanks for the inputs

  9. pavlinux

    Whats mean “advanced heart rate features” in Garmin site?
    link to buy.garmin.com

    • I suspect that means some of the feature dependencies from HRV-driven applications. Lactate threshold is one.

    • pavlinux

      If I wear a Fenix6 and a HRM-Pro at the same time, both of them are recording daily activity (steps, heart rate, stress, floors?) Then they are synchronized via TrueUp™ in the profile.
      How to set the priority for the data? After all, the data on the heart rate from the belt will be much more accurate.

    • My understanding is priority is for the watch for activity tracking data. The assumption being that people aren’t wearing strap and watch at the same time, unless in an activity (which, is kinda logical), in which case you’d have it paired to the watch.

    • Neil Jones

      So this ain’t going to give me the steps that my watch is denying me while I walk round the supermarket pushing a trolley or mow the lawn then? :-(

    • As long as you took the watch off first, it actually will. :)

    • LagBolt

      So, if you run with an HRM-Pro and FR745, which will Garmin use for heart rate and cadence (assuming you are wearing both devices)? Will it defer to the HRM-Pro for both?

  10. Uli

    Does the HRM-TRI also offer offline data recording (incl. steps) for other activities than swimming? From the above article you could assume so, but couldn’t find it in your HRM-TRI review.

    • Yup!

      So for example, as a quick test I just wore the HR strap while doing some clean-up around the office. Before I did that I started the activity (‘Cardio’), and then I stuck the watch in the microwave, breaking the connection to the strap. I went about my business and came back 5 mins later and saved the activity. It then goes through the same routine as swimming in terms of finding the strap, downloading the data, and saving it as part of the workout as if it was connected the entire time.

  11. AGrenz

    Does the new HRM-PRO track indoor cycling cadence like the Tickr X?
    I already have a Running Dynamics Pod paired with a Fenix 6 PRO, but I would like to be able to track track my cycling cadence as I have a stationary bike desk that I often use while working in my office.

  12. Luke

    I was really hoping to hear about XC Ski dynamics (glide time/distance, poling time, power etc.) but I don’t see ski mentioned at all here despite the rumors. Its really the only reason I would upgrade from HRM-RUN but I was hoping the release of the HRM-PRO would bring ski dynamics to all the newer gen Garmin straps via SW update since the motion sensor HW seems to be the same.

    What do you know about XC Ski dynamics Ray? delayed? scrapped? bad rumor?

  13. Terry Lazaou

    Does this wash/clean up any better. I found that after a few years, my Garmin run strap has a stank that I just can’t get rid of. the Wahoo strap, sans sensor can easily be dropped in the wash with my cycling and other delicates.

    • Kristiina

      I have this exact same issue with the HRM-RUN strap, it smells absolutely awful after couple of years of use even though washed regularly and nowadays after every run. Was really hoping this new one could have been washed in the washing machine. For this reason I’m considering getting the TICKR X but just reading the comments about it and doesn’t sound too reliable, haven’t had issues with the HRM-RUN other than the smell so wouldn’t want to replace it with something that doesn’t work properly

  14. Nate C

    Hope I didn’t miss this, but I didn’t see whether the pod pops off the strap for replacement in 1-2 years when the strap is stretched out and the electrodes seem to be doing a worse job of consistently picking up the heart rate?

    I’m still using Garmin “Hrm Run” pods with replaceable straps (running dynamics, no Bluetooth, but I have an npe C.A.B.L.E. For that) for 4+ years (maybe longer? When were they released?), going strong after about 5-6 battery and 4 strap replacements. Straps are about $10 on Amazon and the snap on straps seem easier to put on to me than the side hook. When you add it all up, it comes to a bit more than the cost of one pro, but I have a purpose-built product for each activity and I’ve gotten 2-3x the years of use.

    Buying a new $129 hrm every year is a no go. Planned obsolescence and money grab in my opinion and why I skipped the Tri and dual upgrades (and have a Swim which only gets used in the pool to prolong the life)…

  15. Steve

    Can this strap be used as a running pod for Zwift like you can with the tickr x?

  16. GLT

    Was hoping the updated strap would have some more features, but a worthy upgrade in any case. We’ll see what future firmware updates bring.

    Can probably use the Bluetooth availability to trigger my home automation system to do some pre-workout & post-workout tasks.

  17. Joshua Gordon

    Did you have any issues with battery life drain from the bluetooth connectivity? With the HRM dual I always remove the piece from the strap, else something like my ipad will connect to it and drain the battery. Since this has bluetooth, I am wondering if that could be a problem since the computer is not removable. Thanks.

  18. Christian

    Although the watch does obviously record cadence, once you connect a RD strap, I’m pretty sure cadence from the strap gets recorded instead. At least upon getting a strap I noticed the cadence data instantly improve — no obvious drop outs as the watch is prone to plus much cleaner over all.

  19. Alex

    My HRM-Tri recently stopped working reliably and I was already considering my options. I also have a TICKR for Zwift because of the Bluetooth connectivity and thought about just using that one for running too.

    What keeps rubbing me the wrong way is Garmin’s pricing. $129 is absolutely ridiculous. I think the HRM-Tri was officially listed at the same, but did anyone really pay that? I think it was always on sale somewhere for significantly less. I’m in the lucky position of being able to get Garmin products 45% but even $70 is borderline what I am willing to pay. Especially since I wouldn’t even use a strap most of the time if Garmin’s wrist heart rate wasn’t that god awful.

  20. Darien

    Thank you for the excellent review, as always! Do you know how long the strap is able to record steps/ HR data / calories etc. without the watch? I’m a healthcare worker and I’d love to be able to record that data throughout my 8hr shift without actually wearing the watch (watches aren’t recommended for infection control).

    • Andrew M

      Ray’s post mentions 18 hours of storage.

    • Correct, and, if you’re phone is within range here and there, that’ll offload as you go past it. So while an 18hr shift might not be unusual, I suspect you probably pass by your phone here and there (if it’s not on you). So you’d likely be good.

      Battery-wise of course you’ll go through CR2032’s faster. If one figures Garmin’s math is basically 365 hours, then at 9hrs/day, you’re looking at 40 days, or maybe a bit under 2 months of work weeks between swap. Not horrible.

    • Rob

      I don’t suppose it would also feed that HR data into the watch (or server) to fill in body battery/stress when you’re using this strap as an activity tracker? If it matters, let’s assume your preferred tracker is set as a watch that supports those metrics. Maybe even one that supports the newer recovery advisor that takes stress into account.

    • Nils A Dahl

      Same question here!

    • No feeding into Stress or Body Battery (I’ve been wearing it all morning without wearing a Garmin watch), and while it is properly filling in HR data, there’s no data for Body Battery or Stress.

  21. What I like about the Wahoo TICKR X 2020 – ease of battery changing since the unit isn’t screwed to the strap. Also if the Garmin strap ever wears out – I have a couple of Polar straps that wore out and being able to snap the unit out of the strap was really nice.

  22. Felipe

    Is this a heavy-duty unit? i’ve broken two garmin “normal” HR, the latest the dual because of the sensitivity of the screws when replacing the battery or simple plastic failures inside.

  23. Grant Smith

    Any ideas on integration with the Speed 2 and/or Cadence 2 sensors since those also have the capability of storing/transmitting data without a head unit?

  24. amico

    Ray, can we reasonably expect a running focus dual system strap (a combination of RUN4-HRM and HRM-DUAL)?

    • Honestly not sure. Heck, I would have thought this strap would have come out a long-long time ago, so no idea on how a HRM-RUN v2 might (if ever) manifest itself. I suppose technically it’d be like V3 or something, there’s been a few iterations actually.

  25. fl33tStA

    With my old HRM Run I always have problems changing batteries, why wasn’t that changed to the same system used for HRM Pro and of course I can put my HRM Pro strap in the washing machine

    or can i put the whole new HRM Pro thing in the washmachine, because you can use it for swimming too?

  26. Ed

    Are there any plans from Garmin to release the HRM-PRO (and all the other HRMs as well) not as a strap (like the OH1)?
    That would be really useful for activities where the chest strap is bothering you.

    Especially, I’d like to have the “offline daily activity data support without watch” with an arm strap.

    • I figure eventually Garmin might release an OH1-type sensor, though I suspect it wouldn’t necessarily be tied to a ‘PRO’ branding. I suspect Running Dynamics might be challenging on a bicep from a balance standpoint…but, maybe not.

      I love the OH1, primarily just how easy it is to start/stop activities.

  27. Alasdair Graham

    In my example of wearing this strap during the day when I am doing some some part time manual labour work and do not want to wear my FR945, would I have to start an activity on the watch to get the HR, steps, etc. to fill in the day’s missing data, or would it simply pass the data over when the strap comes back in range?

  28. nice review, can we pair the HRM Dual for firmware update or only the pro?

  29. Pavel Vishniakov

    Hi Ray,
    thanks for the review, now I just need to wait for my birthday and get this strap :)
    One weird question – are the colored pieces interchangeable between Garmin straps? For example, if I have HRM-TRI and I don’t like yellow part of HRM-PRO – can I swap them?

  30. Zdenek

    I hope the Suunto’s part of strap patent does not include material quality, as Sunnto Smart Sensor was for me the least standing HR belt, as it stopped measure reliably after ~4 months of 10hrs/week usage, and every fiend I know has problem with HR spikes using SSS. Which is sad as I am still the Movescount/Ambit 3 Peak guy. Having also original Ticker that lasted 2 years an failed me only one but in the middle of half-IM race and now I hope Polar H10 Pro will last at least the year or two and prove to be reliable.

  31. CJ

    Hi DCR

    -10C to 50F is quite the temperature range…

  32. Neil Jones

    Dual Bluetooth is one of the things I’ve been waiting for in this as I have a treadmill that has a tendency to steal the BT HRM connection from any other device, even mid-session which gets really annoying trying to run Zwift on iOS devices as I have to physically turn the treadmill off before I can free-up the HRM connection for Zwift again.

    However, I note that the HRM-Pro now also connects direct to Garmin Connect Mobile, so on an iPhone does that effectively mean you’ve already lost that second Bluetooth connection to this GCM connection?

    • Correct, it does take up one of the BT channels. Though, if on the same iOS device as Zwift, I think that only counts as one connection – I’d have to check somehow.

    • Neil Jones

      OK, that’s a shame, as typically I’ll be running Zwift on my ATV or iPad (with GCM on my iPhone). Is the GCM connection necessary for the HRM-Pro to function, or once I’ve done the initial set-up can I unpair it from my iPhone and maybe just re-pair it occasionally to check for firmware updates, so just relying on the ANT connection to my watch for the core functionality (including cached uploading)?

    • Nah, not at all required. For example, if you don’t care about intensity minutes/calories/etc (because you’re wearing your watch anyway), then there’s honestly zero reason to pair it to GCM aside for occasional firmware updates.

    • Neil Jones

      Cool beans. Just waiting for the Wiggle link!

      P.S. I like Amazon’s product title – “Garmin Baby (Boy) HRM Pro…” Surely it’s Garmin who provide Amazon with these titles?

    • Haha…that’s hilarious!

      Yup, waiting on Wiggle links as well, hope to have soon!

  33. Kevin MacArthur

    I’ve got a 945 watch but use a Wahoo bike computer (and Zwift) so the Physio True-Up function doesn’t work to add all my bike activities so Training Status is pretty meaningless. If I used the HRM PRO with the Wahoo/Zwift during a ride could I sync the data afterwards to my watch to get the data in it for that purpose?

    The idea would be not to have the watch recording during the ride.

  34. Honza

    Hi, I have two questions. You probably answered the first one in post # 12, but I’m not sure, so I’ll ask again. Can HRM-PRO send data using both ANT+ and Bluetooth at the same time?

    It is good that HRM can finally record the steps. But I didn’t understand, if the HRM would finally be able to determine the distance in the activity from the steps, in case one doesn’t wear a watch? Thank you.

    • 1) Yes, it sends both data concurrently. You could connect two Bluetooth devices at the same time, while concurrently connecting 1,000 ANT+ devices. Or just one ANT+ device. :)

      2) Yes. So, to add another quick office test. I put the HRM-PRO on, and then put my Garmin watch on the desk (and ensured it had sync’d all steps – I hadn’t gone anywhere in a while). Next, I meandered outside and back. Once I got back and it synced the strap, both the steps and my distance within GCM had increased to about the right amounts.

    • Thomas M

      Ray, there is an important caveat here regarding (2). If you use a timed activity, the recorded steps are *not* translated into distance and speed in the activity.

      My use case for buying my new HRM Pro is handball (where I cannot wear a watch). I wanted HR and distance data for those games. I thought it would use my stride length to estimate a distance based on the recorded steps, alas it does not (confirmed this with Garmin support on the phone). I can see the HR data and cadence data graphs in the Garmin Connect activity, but derived data such as distance and speed would have been much more powerful.

      Hopefully they will be able and willing to remedy this through software. I do not understand why they choose this solution, had I used my old Forerunner 610 and my footpod and pretended it was a threadmill run, I would have gotten exactly what I wanted in that respect (obv. sans heart rate data).

      I am hoping someone will tell me that I missed some setting somewhere :).

  35. Max

    Already bought it, great investment :-)

  36. David

    The HR images are just thumbnails when I click on them to take a closer look. The labels are really hard to read.

    Also, here’s a typo: “As if often the case with intervals” should start with “As is”

    • Huh, that’s super weird. I’ve never seen that before. Honestly not sure how to fix that for this post, but, you can click the little text bit above each test section, which takes you to the full data sets to zoom in/etc..

  37. Scott

    I really wish they would go to a form factor with a replaceable strap. Do you know if there’s a technical reason they didn’t do that?

  38. Lasse

    Polar (European) says maximum 65-93 cm for the H10. For the Garmin (Americans) “…you can also buy an extender which takes it to 56”/142cm”. I’ve been told cars from Volvo sold in US-market have longer seatbelts than in the rest of the world. Now I believe that’s true ?

  39. Carlos Echeverry

    good review. But I would like to know if this new feature of Running Dynamics will allow me to wear the HRM-PRO, connected to my threadmill (Sole F63) through Zwift.Basically I would like to wear my HRM and receive the dynamics while training in a threadmilll. Is that possible with HRM-PRO?

  40. BM

    Nice upgrade from Garmin here.

    I think many users continue to have issues with the little red gasket. Would really like to find where these can be acquired, or something to take its place. Would be great to change that along with the battery at each battery change. After several battery changes they seem to go dry on my end and eventually water will find its way in (HRM-Tri user here).

    Anyone have insight here?

  41. Matthew Alexander

    Hey Ray, Always love the reviews.. if I have a working HRM Tri, is there any reason OTHER than bluetooth to pick one of these up? Or maybe switch to it after mine dies and lose the Ant+ on my laptop?

  42. Thani AL-Thani

    Ray always excellent reviews, unfortunately Polar is the only one that’s will be compatible with most of the gym equipments and work with every brand, Wahoo is second while I use Garmin but I always have polar H10 while traveling. I had a comment on Garmin watch’s with unsatisfactory wrist based HR I wish they update it because there watch is great.

  43. Pedro Gonzalez

    As a person who is interested in running dynamics, but not having a watch that supports it, am I still out of luck?
    I don’t see where the HRM-Pro can backfeed that to the app instead of through the phone.
    I would say the same for swimming heart rate, since my watch does not support it.

  44. Nils A Dahl

    Does the offline data recording also translate to updated first beat metrics like body battery? This is something I’ve been looking for for a very long time so in theory if I wanted to wear a nice dress watch to a wedding I could wear the HRM pro under my suit and not only get steps but also get body battery and all other first beat metrics for a night of dancing and drinking :) Any idea if first beat will update when the HRM pro syncs after the offline session?

    • I don’t believe it updates Body Battery specifically, but I’ll ask.

    • Nils A Dahl


    • Nils A Dahl

      Hey Ray,
      Is this something you could just do a quick test with?… normally when the Garmin watch is taken off for some time, the Body Battery shows a dotted line where GC basically “guesses” what the BB decrease was over the period of time… If the HRM Pro fills it in during the offline period, that dotted line should be updated by GC to show as solid I would think.

  45. fl33tStA

    that means, i can use this new strap for sleep Tracking too!
    would be interesting compared to OHR measurment?

    • Yeah, maybe some night I’ll give it a whirl. I think the challenge in general with sleep tracking and most chest straps is maintaining good connectivity the entire night (sans sweat/moisture/etc…).

  46. Eric

    Love my hrm tri and is the most comfortable strap ever.

    When is the updated Garmin footpod coming out???

  47. Julia

    Great review, thank you! One thing I’m not clear on is whether the HRM-Pro is compatible with ALL Garmin watches. Is it compatible with the Vivoactive 4, for example? The implication seems to be that it is compatible with any Garmin watch with ANT+, yet Garmin’s website doesn’t list them as so?! I also want to track calories, intensity etc for workouts where I don’t want to risk wearing my watch e.g. horse riding. I don’t want to invest in the devices if they won’t enable me to achieve my goal.

  48. Scott James

    Ray, I was hoping that I could use this HRM for my Nordictrack X22i, which is supposed to read BT HRM…but I am not sure that is the way to go. I wear my Fenix 6 with the Tri HRM when I do a treadmill run. This issue is two fold, the X22i does read HR and I usually import the TCX file from iFit to Strava or I could use the Garmin TCX file…either way Strava doesn’t seem to get the HR.

    I would like to see HR from the X22i while running. I ordered the Pro and will try it and see if it works. If anything, I can use it for Zwift.

    Thanks for the great and informative review!!


    • Scott James

      I meant to say that the Garmin Tri HRM will not work with the X22i, so I am hoping that the HRM-Pro will (since it is BT) and I will see realtime HR while doing a treadmill run. Hopefully one of these days Nordictrack will allow their machines to work with Garmin or Strava directly like the Peloton Treads do.

    • Scott James

      I just tested it…run with my Fenix 6, on the Nordictrack X22i with the HRM-Pro. Got live HR on both the watch and the trademill (no issues with BT connection). Running dynamics look good, no issues. It works. I will wear the HRM-Tri while outside and save the Pro for Treadmill only runs (Zwift, etc.). I will test Zwift later this week.

  49. Tim

    Will breathing rate be reported for cycling paired with an edge. 1000

  50. Robin Eyre

    I assume this means that I could sleep with this strap on and get my resting HR? Since I’m still rocking a 920 without optical HR, and my current HRM-Tri will only really work for an activity, this would give me the metrics other people get from having an optical HR sensor in their wrist and auto upload to Connect during the day just like newer watches? (If I was geeky enough to wear it all day at work, which as a Science teacher I certainly am! ? )

  51. Noduck

    If I wear this strap and a Garmin watch on my wrist, while walking/running but with my wrist not moving (for example pushing a stroller), will the strap record the steps and use those instead of the lack of steps recorded by the watch? What if I switch hands to push, and the watch records some steps, but not all?

  52. Steve

    Just been released in Australia and @ $159 AU, $40 cheaper than the HRM Tri which is still selling/listed at $199

  53. David Ashley

    I simply need to see my heart rate while I’m walking.
    Watches using green light on my wrist don’t help because some of my beats are too weak to get that far and register.
    So I need the electrical beat detection which is more accurate.

    Is there a way to get the electrical real time read out in real time as I’m walking without having to download it?
    It would be nice if I could see the real time beats per minute on my watch.

  54. Grant

    Is it supported by Samsung Health App? I now use this to sync sensors when Strava stopped sensor support.

    • Yup, it’s dual ANT+/BLE, so it should work just fine there when paired up.

    • Grant

      Cool thanks yeah I’m pretty sure the hardware and communications are supported but I meant software support in the app. It looks too new right now, I just checked in the app and it’s not listed, see picture
      Hopefully they add it soon.

  55. José

    “And then using a small screwdriver to remove the two screws.” It looks like there are four screws? Do you only need to remove 2 of the 4 to change the battery?

  56. Scott

    Finally!! I’m not sure why this didn’t come out years ago. I was surprised that Garmin didn’t have the dual when the HRM-RUN first came out.

    • Scott

      Also, it seems that HRM technology has gone backwards over the years. I had a Polar strap from 20 years ago that was completely sealed and rechargeable and also transmitted real time HR in the water with no problem.

  57. David Sinclair

    When is the new Garmin Foot Pod coming?

  58. WK

    Stupid question. Does the HRM swim strap work with the HRM Pro sensor? Thanks

  59. Jonas

    Will Garmin update the HR strap in the edge 1030plus bundle with the HRM pro? Or best to buy HRM pro separate from the edge?

  60. Sam

    Hi Ray,

    Quick, slightly unrelated, hr question: is there any way to tell in Garmin Connect/any other platform what sensor recorded HR? Sometimes I think I have dropouts with a Garmin hr-dual or my Polar H7 monitors, and had a couple of old bundled garmin HR monitors fail, but sometimes it’s pretty difficult to tell mid-run. I use a Fēnix 5X, so even if there is a dropout I still record some HR, which to me it doesn’t seem as accurate. I know if I had a HR Run/Tri/Pro strap it would also have running dynamics etc which would indicate a HR strap attached, but just wondered if the FIT file itself contains information on what sensor recorded data, or just records the data only without being able to trace its origins. Hope that makes sense.



  61. Solon

    Except running dynamics I also read that it measures watt. Is that true and if yes how it works?

    • Yes, you can download the “Running Power’ on the Connect IQ app. I use it and find it most useful on windy days, to compare my efforts into the wind compared to when it is at my back. It uses the grade, speed, wind speed and direction and vertical ratio.

      Here is the official Garmin page describing all of the running dynamics: link to discover.garmin.com

  62. Richard Garrett

    The cartoon means a bit more.

    After every use (swim, run, or bike), rinse it off.
    After every 7th use (swim, run or bike) OR after every swim in a pool (chlorinated presumably), wash it off with soapy water.

  63. Florian

    Thanks for the review. I mainly use the HRM Tri for Soccer but I am experiencing problems with updating the training load when I make an acitivity with HRM-Tri and downloading the heart rate data after the activity. I give the watch and the hrm-tri up to 10 minutes in the resume/save screen, but that does not help.

    training effect is calculated in the right way but the Training load (8) is completely wrong. I made a similar activity where i was wearing the watch all the time – Training load 149.

    Are you experiencing a similar behaviour with your Setup

    many thanks for your answer
    kr Florian

    • Florian

      Hello Ray,

      did you have similar issues with the Training load (as described in my post above) when using the HR-sensor “offline”?

      I have also posted a thread in the Garmin Forum – unfortunately without any succes: link to forums.garmin.com

      many thanks for your help.
      BR Florian

    • Hmm, that’s interesting. I’d have to construct a bit of a test around it. I might be able to do that today with an indoor trainer workout. Let me circle back…

    • Florian

      Hi Ray, were you able to give it a try and test if the Training load is calculated the Right way if the HR is syncronized after the activity?
      Best Regards Florian

    • Florian

      Hello Ray,

      sorry to annoy you, but were you able to test an replicate the behaviour I am experiencing with Training load and recovery time…

      In the meantime I made another acitivity with over 3 days of recovery time but only 66 in Training load.

      br Florian

    • Daniel M.

      I was reading up in this, as i wanted to use the HRM Pro for climbing witough a watch on my wrist and saw this part in the FAQ:

      “Some metric calculations, such as Training Load and Training Effect include data recorded on a Garmin watch that are not recorded using store and forward. These metrics will be different or missing when using store and forward. Other metrics or measurements that rely on heart rate will be impacted by this feature as the data will not reprocess through the separately uploaded activity data from a Garmin device.”https://support.garmin.com/en-GB/?faq=BatdMMuLrk703sVqdI5069&partNumber=010-12955-00&tab=topics

      I then opened this other post here about it.


      It seems to be a known problem with Garmin. I think i am gonna hold off buying a HRM Pro then – this kind of defeats the idea of having the correct values of training load and effect.

  64. Wezy 76

    Hi can this be used on zwift for running instead of the zwift run pod? thanks Jason

  65. Alasdair Graham

    Does an activity need to be started and running on the watch to get the HR and steps offloaded when the watch is out of range but then comes back into range?

  66. GLT

    Battery status gets pulled into GC activity summaries or this HRM similar to other recent Garmin accessories.

  67. Stephan

    Ray, it’s very frightening how many users have a broken Garmin hr belt after a battery change. Coincidence, system? And the new one is built the same way…

  68. Bill Lomax

    Thank you for all the work you do for us.

    Q. Could this HRM or the TICKRX replace my Zwift foot pod?

  69. Jeremy

    So it is not able to sync a swim workout directly to Garmin Connect without going through a watch? I do not have a Garmin watch but do use Garmin Connect regularly for bike rides with my 530+.

    • Correct, not in the way you want. You’ll get the HR profile for it and such in the Garmin Connect app, but you won’t get a specific workout file like you would on the Edge 530 for a bike ride. For that, as you noted you’ll need a Garmin watch unfortunately.

  70. Cedric

    While the strap also includes the cadence data, that actually comes from your watch anyway (or a footpod, if you have one of those). So while Garmin sometimes groups that under the Running Dynamics banner in marketing blurbs over the years, that’s not actually the case and is recorded already on every Garmin wearable.

    This is super confusing :s I don’t remember having any cadence data when using the Fenix 6 without my strap (HRM-RUN in this case), could you confirm? If so, then it is strange that the cadence data comes from the watch.

    Also, if the strap doesn’t record/broadcast the cadence data, does that mean that if using the strap sans-watch (same as what you described for swimming, but for example while running without the watch) then after it uploads all the info (run dynamics, HR, etc.) you’ll still not have the cadence? Especially as, if it has the ground contact time and stride length it is quite obvious to get the cadence data.

    Am I mistaken, could you clarify ?

    Thanks for the great review!

    • Yup, Garmin has absolutely shown an recorded running cadence using just the watch itself for at last 5-6 years now. I’d have to go back pretty far to see when they didn’t have it in wearables. Basically, once activity tracking started, that’s when they started including it.

      Check your Garmin Connect activities, I think you’ll find it there. :)

      You wrote: “Also, if the strap doesn’t record/broadcast the cadence data,”

      I think you misread what I wrote:

      “While the strap also includes the cadence data”


    • Cedric

      Thanks for your quick reply.

      Indeed, my bad, the cadence is also available directly from the watch, and I misread.

      How does it work in practice with a HRM-RUN then? If the strap is present does it provide the cadence data itself, instead of the watch? Are both data present in the .fit file?

      To complicate the matter, I am trying to figure out if there is any advantage in using a Polar foot pod (the Bluetooth stride sensor which connects just fine to the Fenix 6 Pro)… in case they are all present, where does the cadence data come from?

  71. Bill

    You mention that “the strap also includes the cadence data”, and in post #150 that it “doesn’t transmit pace (or speed)”.

    Can you speculate as to why Garmin wouldn’t calculate the pace so that this strap could be used as a foot pod for Zwift like you can with the TICKR-X?

    • Honestly no idea, and have wondered that myself. Obviously they’d need stride length, but they could either auto-calc that with an app tie-in, or simply ask it. Though, that would require more app work.

      I think in some ways the other thing is that Garmin probably sees the HRM-PRO (and their other straps) more in support of existing Garmin device users, that something that is purchased standalone. Whereas Wahoo (aside from trainers and bike computers) is in the sensor business for the sake of sensors. Their first devices were sensor interfaces, and soon after sensors for the sake of sensors. So a bit of a different end-goal.

    • Bill Lomax

      Thank you Ray. For my own setup, the TICKR-X will be the purchase for me. It provides an update to my older TICKR + Zwift Pod combo and the Pod can be used by someone else in the house.

  72. Sebastian

    Is it possible to connect the HRM PRO to two devices at the same time, e.g. an ANT+ watch and a phone by BT?

  73. Gord

    Until Garmin moves away from using tweny tiny screws to hold their battery casing together, i am officially done buying their HRMs. I like to think i am quite careful while trying to remove the screws and have the right size screwdriver. However, one HRM is dead and the battery cannot be replaced because the head on one of the screws got stripped. The other HRM is being held together with electrical tape because the backing is so thin. Why not have the same battery mechanism they have on their cadence sensors? Wahoo uses that system on their HRMs and no issue there. Simply because of that, will now be ditching the Garmin HRMs.

  74. frnkr

    @Ray Garmin has an option to download HR after workout. There has been discussion in Garmin’s forum that should one use it or not :D

    What’s your opinion on the matter? :)

    • Yeah, if I’m looking at a workout, I’d guess that 99% of the time I’d absolutely choose to use the HR values from that versus an optical HR sensors. I’m sure there are some crazy edge cases where you for some reason knew the strap data was bad (or, perhaps you took it off mid-workout), but I can’t think of any scenarios off the top of my head where I’d say ‘No’ to that.

      Actually – maybe one – some training apps don’t fully support the appended HR data (the way its structured in the file). It’s somewhat rare, but in the event you have an app like that, then that’s a good reason.

  75. Zwent

    thank you for the review.
    After a few years of cycling only, I just started running again. I use an Edge 520 on my bikes and so went for the FR 245 as this allows me to have a single app for everything. Currently I am using the old HR-only strap that came with the Edge 520+ bundle for running, but I am interested in the running efficiency analysis. I was initially leaning towards the HRM Run, but thinking that if I might get interested in picking up swimming, the HRM Tri is to be had for just 10 € more. Would there be any reason to go for the Swim? I don’t really get the difference between Swim and Tri.
    I suppose the Pro would only allow me to get rid of my ANT+ dongle when doing virtual rides on Zwift & Co when compared to the Tri?

    I do not really care for the Pod, as I have no comfort or sagging issues with straps.

    Any opinions or recommendations?

  76. Matteo DeVo

    Thanks for the great review. Quick question:

    I have the 645-Music; which doesn’t use the optical sensor for swim activities. I recently went for a swim and after saving, it didn’t prompt me to download the HR data. In Garmin connect it didn’t say avg HR or max HR. The HR data appeared in the daily statistics portion, but not for the Swim specifically. Any ideas why?


    • Aurore

      the same for me. I don’t know how to see the HR when (OR AFTER) I swim. I am going to try to use the chrono (and save as activity at the end) to see the difference but i am not going to have the distance of the swim :-(

  77. Matteo DeVo

    For reference to the above comment – I was using the HRM pro with the 645 music in this instance.

  78. Pete

    Excellent review thank you!!

    During an activity (e.g. running), using the FR945 paired with the HRM-Pro, what would be the source of the HR displayed during the run – the optical sensor or the strap? If the former, I imagine the only way to get real time strap HR data would be to disable the optical HR sensor, but whether this would then display the HR data from the paired strap on the FR945 during the run, I’m yet to establish.

    • When any ANT+ or Bluetooth Smart heart rate sensor is paired to the FR945, the paired sensor will take priority during a workout. This is true of all Garmin devices (and actually, also true of Polar/Suunto/Apple/etc…)

      The singular exception to this however is swimming, in which case during the activity it’ll show the optical HR sensor data, but afterwards it’ll backfill with the ‘correct’ data from the strap.

    • Pete

      Thank you for clarifying :)

  79. Rafal

    Assuming I have a Garmin Fenix 6 watch and I don’t swim and don’t perform any indoor workouts, just running and cycling outdoor, are there any reasons to buty HRM PRO? Isn’t the HRM RUN sufficient?

    • Not really – assuming you don’t need Bluetooth Smart connectivity for any other purposes/apps. Then yup, the HRM-RUN will work just fine if you want Running Dynamics info.

      And if you don’t even care about that, you can pickup basically any ANT+/BLE strap.

    • Rafal

      I will stay with Garmin – “it just works” factor makes a difference :)

  80. dmossop

    Does this compete with the 4iiii Viiiiva for ANT+ bridging??


    I have the FR935 and I’m only interested in running data and HR. Is the Pro worth getting or should I grab the Tickr x?

  82. Jakob

    If I like to wear a “real” watch to work and my Fenix 6X at home will the new strap keep my body battery and breath widget updated in the Connect app?

  83. Sam KENNEDY

    What about the lactic acid threshold feature?

  84. Alex

    Is it better to pair the watch (FR945 here) and hrm-pro through Bluetooth or ANT+ ? (regarding bandwidth / battery performance)

    • Definitely ANT+. The reasons are:

      A) You’ll get the ANT+ Running Dynamics metrics
      B) It’s how it does the saved activity data offloading
      C) Historically speaking it’s been slightly better battery life
      D) It also sends more information about the sensor to the watch

      The only scenario where I’d recommend using BLE over ANT+ sensor pairing is when you run into a specific issue with sensor dropouts (perhaps in a certain training room/etc.), in which case you can try BLE instead.


    • Alex

      Thanks. Can we say that it is true for the Garmin HRM-PRO but for the Polar H9 for example that’s doesn’t have Run Dynamics or data offload support, Bluetooth is better?
      The Polar app let you disabled everything else but Bluetooth anyway.

      (I do research with raw HRV data after a run from the fit file thus trying to figure out with what protocol we get the more information)

    • Yeah, I need to dig in on HRV sampling and see between the two. I personally always use ANT+ because in the DCR Analyzer it means we can enumerate the ANT+ ID, so I can see/verify the sensor listed in a given device file is indeed the sensor I thought it was. It’s a neat trick.

      Another random tidbit is that the ANT+ Heart Rate Device Profile (specification) actually requires HRV data be sent. Now, it doesn’t require valid HRV data be sent, but just that something is sent. Back in the early days of the Mio Alpha optical HR sensors they ended up basically sending throwaway data to conform to the spec. BLE doesn’t have such a restriction, which means that sometimes companies won’t transmit there, perhaps because they don’t have valid data.

      Anyway, I did a comparison a few years ago with HRV sampling via ANT+ across half a dozen devices concurrently, but not side by side with ANT+/BLE from the same sensor to see how that looked.

  85. Kath

    Hi DC Rainmaker, when you pair the HRM PRO with the Zwift app, and upload the Zwift workout to your Connect Garmin, does it give a change to the training effect?

    • No, unfortunately not. That’s because Garmin Connect doesn’t allow any 3rd party apps to impact Training Load/Recovery scores. It’s been a big gap for a while now.

    • Edelans

      thanks for asking ! I came here to post this exact question =)

    • Alfred Chin

      How about now in 2022? I know Garmin Connect will now show training loads/status for activities from Zwift and Tacx. Will HR data from HRM Pro also be updated to show intensity minutes because it does not update intensity minutes with my current HRM-Tri?

      So basically I will wear the HRM Pro (which I don;t have), start an indoor cycling activity on Tacx App on my Neo Bike. End of activity, it will be updated on Garmin Connect and intensity minutes will also be updated in Garmin Connect. Is this possible?

  86. Fermandeza

    Thanks for the extensive review. I would like to know why would I be interested in a BLE HRM band. I’m a Garmin user, with a watch and a cycling computer, that runs, swims and rides, but everything outside, meaning I don’t go to the gym neither I have have a home cycling trainer. Would the ANT+ connection be enough for me?

    Thank you very much.

    • John I Gomes

      Think ANT+ would be better, as you can then also get the running dynamics data (assuming you are using a garmin watch) that works only with ant+.

  87. John

    Hi there

    Just got this for using it for outdoor running, cycling and zwift. The hrm connects to the phone and garmin connect app, but zwift bt discovery doesn’t detect it. Any idea what could be wrong?

    I tried connecting to zwift from phone and iPad, and it is the same story everywhere.


  88. Nikolas


    I have an Schwinn AC Performance with the Echelon MPower2.

    Can i use the Garmin HRM-Pro in order to transmit the Power/Cadence/Heart Reart from the Echelon Mpower2 to the Zwift app? and on the same time save the Indoor Cycling app to my Garmin watch?

    Thank you

    • No, the HRM-PRO doesn’t relay/re-transmit/bridge connections from other sensors. It just transmits its own data.

      But, you can transmit it to multiple devices at once. So you can at least transmit your HR data to both the Garmin watch and the indoor cycling app concurrently.

    • Nikolas

      Thank you. i already have the HRM-Run, thought that the HRM-Pro would act as bridge.

      So if I want to Zwift, then would I have to go for either the 4iiii heart monitor (and then manual transfer/save the activity to Garmin Connect) or the Cable (not sure if i can transfer activity to Garmin Connect) ?

    • Correct, or, you can just use ANT+ on a PC/Mac as well.

    • Nikolas

      Thank you.
      I have read your review on 4iiii (think they are the “creators” of ANT+).

      Any guidance which one to choose? CABLE or 4iiii ?
      i’m an Fenix 3HR/iPhone/Apple TV user if makes a difference.

  89. Hunter

    I thought that the tickrx would be the missing piece to solve my garmin, wahoo, Sufferfest, Nordic track mixed conundrum. I feel like i now see the error of my ways. But one question is whether the hr pro will connect to my wahoo trainer setup, headwind specifically

  90. Marcus Ramirez

    Is there a difference in accuracy in Running Dynamics metrics between the FR945 and HR-PRO?

  91. If I’m not mistaken in how I’m viewing this, the HRM pro doesn’t have a removable module or conversely a replaceable strap. Therefore, the life of the HRM is limited to that of the strap regardless of the many people who complain about battery life issues. Personally, I’ve had my elastic wear out over the years on my straps or just get ruined. I simply replaced the elastic/sensors and kept the module. Cost me as little as $12 and as much as $25. I actually was all set to pony up on this device as it would allow geeks to get training data or step data on days they couldn’t or didn’t want to wear a digital training watch, plus I could finally get credit (intensity minutes) and some idea what my heart rate was for my open water swims at least. And maybe try it in the pool. At least for 25m sprint intervals where I don’t flip off the wall. But the fact it’s $130 and basically disposable is kind of ridiculous. I might wait for the second generation and just go with a polar H9 for now. I actually need a new HRM.

  92. Morten Romslo

    I have a Garmin Venue Watch. As far as I can see, it does not support Garmins Training Effect. If I use the HRM Pro with my watch, would my exercise get training in the Garmin Connect app?


  93. Jason Santeler

    Once I have this set up with my Felix 6x Pro Solar, will it automatically set up my running power zones after a few runs? Will the device or connect have the option to join a training plan based on running power? If these are my concerns am I covered or should I be looking to Stryd for this functionality?

  94. Tom

    Looks like it’s on sale for $99 now on Amazon

  95. Alan9

    Just recently bought the HRM-PRO because I got $50 discount. I thought of getting the Instinct Solar to replace my Instinct, however, the Pulse Ox that come with Instinct Solar doesn’t seems to work with the HRM-PRO.
    If the Pulse Ox not working when paired with the HRM-PRO, I don’t see the reason to get the instinct solar.

    Please advise.

    • Hmm, that’s odd. PulseOx comes from the optical HR sensor, not the chest one. So PulseOx would still come from the sensor.

      However, one thing to keep in mind on PulseOx is that it doesn’t typically measure when your super active (since that technology isn’t good with movement, Garmin variant or otherwise).

      Are you saying that if sitting still, wearing the HRM-PRO, that it won’t allow you to get a PulseOx reading?

    • Alan9

      When the watch are connected to the HRM-PRO, the optical sensor in the watch will stop working.

  96. jake77

    A very nice and complete review, thank you for this! Did you find out for how long the strap can gather data before it is full? Can it do more than 24 hours?

  97. Paran

    Hi..currently i am using wahoo tickr 2020,i was planning an upgrade to polar h10 for accuracy and consistency…but now with the new garmin in the market i am really confused.Can the garmin match polar h10’s accuracy?

    • I wouldn’t consider there much (if any) accuracy differences between the HRM-PRO and the Polar H10.

      It’s really about features at this point. And ultimately, if you don’t have a Garmin watch, there’s little reason to get the HRM-PRO over the H10 (or for that matter, over any other strap).

  98. Constantin

    Very helpful and complete article, thank you very much! Looks lime I’m going to have to get a Garmin pro hahaha

  99. Henry Hampton

    Just bought the Strap and it’s not pairing with LifeFitness machines in the gym… is this the ANT + thing perhaps? Anyone else experience this as well?

  100. Jake

    Thank you for the review!
    So, the HRM-Pro doesn’t work with Suunto 9? I’m going to have Fenix 6X Pro, but before that I need a belt for Suunto 9 and therefore I would like to buy Garmin instead.


  101. Bill J

    Hi Ray,
    I’ve been trying to figure this out myself, but I’m struggling a little as a “simple” runner that’s just looking to iron out the inaccuracies I keep getting from my Fenix 6X.

    I’m trying to decide the ideal monitor to pair the watch, and I really like the look of the OH1, but would there be any downsides to opting for a third party rather than keeping things strictly Garmin?

    Thanks for your time.

  102. Beware. The Pro is having serious issues downloading HR data from the strap. As is common with a number of new Garmin products, their software development is as poor as any in the space and takes the company months to develop stable firmware. I’ve gone around and around with them. They recognize the issue and thus far have no solution that works consistently. The one solution that some people have had success with is removing the battery for a time, discharging the strap totally and powering it back up after 5-10 minutes. It has not worked for me or anyone I personally know that has a Pro.

    • Bill J

      Jeez. Given that I’d just been reading how many HRM-Run’s have died immediately after changing the battery (seems to be a sealing issue of some kind) I think I’ll give this a miss.

      Thanks for the heads up.

  103. Jukka Numminen

    I work as a health-care professional and i find this belt to be exactly what i’ve been looking for years. Because of hygiene we can’t use watches and as a bit of a data junkie i’m not going to miss all the daily activity data anymore.

  104. CK

    I contacted Garmin and was told two things about the HRM PRO which surprised me:

    1.) that in addition to not receiving RD data (which I understood from the info on this site) my VA3M won’t even receive HR data from the HRM-PRO.
    2.) that the HRMPRO will export RD data to the Connect app as a stand alone sensor and that this will happen without even having to start any activity on any device since the HRMPRO will auto-detect the activity once it starts. This seems slightly different than what I think I read above (and, frankly it sounds unlikely?)

    Does anyone have any experience that supports either of these two points?

    • Henry Hampton

      bogus.. i just finishes a workout with the Fenix 6X Pro and the heart rate strap.. even had the phone in the pocket with the connect app on and synced. then concluded the workout on the Fenix and ran back home about 2 additional miles, no workout. Then took the watch off altogether and ran around the city block.. no workout. the steps were there but no workout.. by the way i think i allready mentoined that the heart strap alone does not record floors

    • Yeah, something isn’t right there. The HRM-PRO at its core is simply an ANT+ HR strap. Like, the main guy in charge of the product is one of the lead ANT+ engineers converted to being on the Garmin side of the house. It should be seeing that just fine – no issues there. The RD info it won’t of course, because the Vivo lineup doesn’t support Running Dynamics. But if it’s not seeing simple HR- something is broken on the watch or strap.

      The second bit, as Henry noted, is also incorrect. Definitely doesn’t do that. It doesn’t create standalone defined workouts (one of my annoyances with it actually) without a watch. It just basically fills in the gaps on your app for things like HR.

  105. Simon Bowen

    Hi… I’ve just received the HRM-Run as a Christmas present. My main use will be for running outdoors, so I’ll find the Running Dynamics side of things really useful. That said, looking at your reviews of the various Garmin HRMs, should I consider exchanging the Run for the Pro and paying that little extra? Thanks.

    • John Plumer

      No they are all junk. Keep the lowest priced option that will work for you so when you have to replace it won’t be as expensive.

    • John’s issues aside, the main ‘challenge’ with the HRM-RUN is mostly just lack of Bluetooth in it, so if you’re using it with any other 3rd party apps, it’ll likely want/need Bluetooth Smart instead.

      If you don’t need that, and are purely focused on running, then there’s no real difference at this point.

    • Simon Bowen

      OK, thanks Ray. And thanks for all your excellent reviews. They’re an invaluable service.

  106. John Plumer

    Received a replacement for the HRM run Nov 1. It was the pro because the run was out of stock.

    The pro died yesterday. No battery changes just died.

    I had the run warrantied 5 times prior to this. I can’t believe they let this garbage hit the market.

  107. Colm

    I know some have mentioned this already but is the fact that the HR sensor is not detachable a major major drawback and one that renders these products just very expensive straps!!! I think a bigger deal should be made of this in these reviews. Once the strap becomes worn that’s it, your only option is to replace the entire thing!!! Surely at this price point that’s a fairly major flaw!!

    I had the HRM Run up until recently at which point it started chafing me badly. No problem (I thought) I will just replace the strap like I did with previous garmin HR straps. No such luck unfortunately, I contacted garmin and was told the sensor is not replaceable so my only option now is to throw away the strap that has a fully functioning sensor on it!!

    I liked having the running dynamics so I just invested in the separate pods which I think is a better option as I can use my old strap/sensor and just replace either one if/when they wear out.

    • Henry Hampton

      Colm you hit the nail on the head on that comment.. never thought about that.. also just as a side note I have a polar h10 and had issues with the strap specific to that unit.. I sent it in and the strap was malfunctioning.. they wanted 57 dollars for a new strap!! They said they would replace it just this one time but that generally straps were not covered in the warranty.. I cant seem to imagine why Garmin and Polar get this way with the people that actively use these devices almost every day.. straps fail..

  108. Jonathan Dinelli

    Very thorough review. I currently run on Zwift using a smart treadmill that broadcasts speed only over BLE to Zwift running on a windows laptop PC. I do not own a watch and thus do not belong to a specific “ecosystem”. I would like an efficient solution to get my heartrate, cadence and running power in that order to show up on Zwift. Is the only way to achieve that to buy both a chest strap and a stryd pod along with a watch or is there a cheaper fewer device way to achieve this outcome? I am willing to live without running power if one device will get me the other two? Any suggestions would be much appreciated. PS: I notice the reviews on Amazon for the new TickrX are quite negative surrounding the recent batches that have shipped reportedly having a lot of connectivity and QC issues (I am located in the US). Thanks!!

  109. Binoy

    Thanks for the wonderful review. I have got a forerunner 935 and till now I don’t have a chest strap. I’m a novice and have got attracted to Triathlon. My issue is whether I should go for a strap or not. If yes, should I try the HRM-TRI or the new HRM-PRO. Except the pool swimming issue, I believe the new one is good for a grab, if I need to buy a strap. Thanks once again (an avid follower from India)

  110. Kimberly

    Hi! Thank you for this review! I got a Fenix 6s Pro a month and a half ago and am now deciding on a heart rate monitor. After reading the above and your article here: link to dcrainmaker.com I’m wondering if I should just go with the HRM-Run as it seems like the watch covers the Bluetooth advantage of the HRM-PRO?

    If it helps, I mainly run (primarily outside, occasionally indoors), SUP/paddle, and use a rowing erg. I don’t use a lot of third party apps (though I would probably connect the strap to the Concept 2 rower via ANT+ Or Bluetooth and then connect the rower to the erg app on my iPhone via Bluetooth).

    I am mainly looking to improve my VO2 max and become a faster paddler/sprinter. I was interested in a heart rate monitor also to monitor my HRV Stress and Lactate Threshold as well.

    Thank you for any further advice.


    Hi !!
    I have got the garming 910xt watch . Can the HRM PRO work for swimming as a HRM ?
    Thank you !!!

  112. Milan

    Thank you for excellent review as usual!

    But, I’m not quite sure now…

    Could you please tell me is it proven that I get intensity minutes on Garmin Connect if i’m using HRM-Pro with Edge 530 cycling computer?

  113. Alexander Wipf

    Wow, what a thorough review and your passion to help people is admirable.

    I stumbled upon this article because I was considering getting the HRM Pro because of the fact the Instinct Solar doesn’t record Running Dynamics (probably due to its small memory, it couldn’t even store that much data?).

    Now I saw in your screen shot you also have an Instinct Solar, and I was wondering: does the HRM Pro even connect to the Instinct to begin with, i.e. to show live data from the HRM Pro on the watch face (even if it doesnt record it on the watch), or is it basically just like 2 different end devices that never pair and that only each upload there data to Garmin Connect?

    If you happen to know the answer to that, I’d be excited to hear your verdict.

    Again thanks for the amazing work keeping us all informed, trained and happy,


    • Alexander Wipf

      I should have been more specific… here, adding in CAPS:

      … I was considering getting the HRM Pro because of the fact the Instinct Solar doesn’t record Running Dynamics GENERATED ON SENSORS SUCH AS THE RUNNING DYNAMICS POD….

    • The Instinct will connect to the HRM-PRO but purely for heart rate driven metrics, not for any running dynamics metrics.

    • Alexander Wipf

      That’s what I was hoping. Thanks for confirming!

      What I was wondering though is when it does connect, will still synch the running dynamics data later, once the strap synchs with Garmin Connect, too? I would imagine so, otherwise using an HRM Pro it on an Instinct would effectively convert it into just an overpriced strap right?

    • No, without a capable watch you won’t (ever) get Running Dynamics information on Garmin Connect.

      Thus, to your last sentence – that’s correct. It’d be a highly overpriced chest strap, save you viewing the Instinct as an interim Garmin watch or a stepping stone to a higher end model.

    • ChrisM

      Great review as ever – thanks Ray.
      I know the offline running dynamics are missing over bluetooth, but I still use the pc app for syncing my old (and still love) 235XT and wondered if as this is ANT+ connection it would sync using that. I am considering getting one of these to replace a dead/unreliable old Garmin HR strap before I upgrade the watch as the store and forward would be great, but only if it gives me something more than just expensive running HR.
      I could use the swimming HR at least.

    • Chris

      Will it provide (newish) XC ski power? I see the empty field when I record an activity on my Instinct, but don’t know if other devices will give me the same blank field?

    • Chris

      Correction 310XT!

  114. Peter

    I am new to Garmin world (came from Suunto Ambit to Fenix6) and was about to buy garmin HR chest strap but after reading of these numerous bad reviews I will change my decision or will buy the basic one. I am really surprised by these issues with strap failure after months or first battery replacement, my Suunto strap no issues after years of use and one battery change. Unfortunately it is ANT, no ANT+ so I cannot pair it. And I also like its design. Any suggestions on a solid and reliable strap for mostly cycling and running?
    thanks a lot.

  115. Michael Chomiczewski

    Could someone please recommend an iPhone app that can sync to HRM PRO and mirror the heart rate on the phone in real time? Customizable HR zones would be a welcome feature ? I’m looking to do some HR zone based elliptical activity and find it easier to keep the phone in line of sight than to constantly glance at the watch.

    Thank you!

  116. Antu

    Does anybody tested HRM-Pro with Stryd podometer at the same time?
    What dynamics data are matching?

    • Jason S

      For me;

      GCT of HRM is 20-30 ms higher than Stryd
      Vertical Osc. of HRM is about 2-3 cm higher than Stryd
      Power is 60-100+ Watts higher with HRM depending on pace (but I think this is calculated differently and there is no standard)
      Cadence is dead on (however HRM counts every single step as one, Stryd counts left and right together as one so it’s cadence number is half of the HRM’s)

    • Antu

      Thanks a lot @Jason, I appreciate your comments. I understand by higher as a deviation of the right data. I mean the stryd data are more accurate to the real ones. True?

    • Jason S

      It is encouraging that both cadences are equal although that seems like a hard one to get wrong.

      When it comes to ms of ground contact time or vertical oscillation for example I have no idea which is more accurate. I would say it matters very little since I think you would really just use the trend of that number to see if you were fatiguing or not.

      My uneducated guess is that Garmin HRM is superior for some of these measurements because it’s position on the chest is more predictable. The stryd foot pod is moving much more erratically while the HRM is held in a predictable position on the chest simply allowing the sensors inside to do what they do.

      Power measurement is also difficult because of the wind factor. These sensors do that in a different way. In theory, Stryd’s should be more accurate because it’s sensing the wind in real time via the hole in the front of the sensor (although I have doubts of the accuracy of this) Garmin simply uses reported local wind conditions which wouldn’t really account for real time wind gusts. Again rather than taking these numbers too seriously I think you would be looking more at a power number and attaching that number to a perceived effort to see how they correlate.

      I actually find the stryd more useful for pace and distance than I do for power. The power number is erratic and difficult to use for training. I do like that it gives you a power number to shoot for for a certain race distance, but I haven’t been able to put that to use yet.

      I find the HRM to obviously be more useful for HR data and I like the pretty running dynamics graphs that it produces on garmin connect.

      Long story short I don’t like either unit for power. I don’t find running dynamics data that important or useful. I like stryd for pace/distance and I like HRM for HR data. Whether that’s worth the $200 for Stryd and $100 for HRM will largely depend on your budget and what you find important.

  117. Patrick

    In the event of a cache’d workout, are running dynamics data logged?

    Let’s say I want to go for a run, and I want all the data to analyze after, but I don’t want my watch or phone. Can I start the activity on my watch and leave my watch in the car, then sync the data to my watch after (including running dynamics)?

    • Alexander Wipf

      That is exactly the the question I had above. Apparently you cannot ever get to the data if you do not have the watch. I do not understand why, as the HRM should connect to Garmin Connect separately? Doesn’t seem to make sense.

    • No, as noted in the review you *MUST* have a Garmin Running Dynamics capable watch in order to record that data, because that data is tied to a workout activity. The strap doesn’t save/upload standalone workouts as a workout without a watch/device. Instead, it’s just filling in the gaps for things like basic HR and intensity minutes.

    • Alexander Wipf

      Thanks a lot for clearing this up!

    • And just to be clear, I do wish it would create standalone recordings (making it inline with the Wahoo TICKR X or Polar H10…but alas, not).

    • Chris

      Thanks – so the Tickr X does. That’s interesting….

    • Alexander Wipf

      Yeah, I was considering getting the H10 for that reason. But I am assuming the synching would need to be done with the Polar Flow App then, and not connect it via the ANT+ with the Instinct to synch with garmin connect, because we’d run into the same issues then.

    • Ralf Volles

      Assuming you have such a watch and you have set it to take distance from step count and stride lenght instade of GPS and connected the HRM-Pro as HRM and running sensor. Now you start a running activity, but leave the connectivity radius of your watch wearing still the HRM-Pro. When you come back to your watch and end the activity, what data will be uploaded into the fit-file of the activity? At least the heart rate as that is what these feature was created for during swimming activities (and what your review stated). But is there stored and later transmitted into the fit-file anything else?

    • Your HR data and steps data are pulled into the activity, but distance is not pulled into the timed activity, however is pulled into your daily total stats.

  118. Stefano

    Ottima recensione, sicuramente la mia prossima fascia cardio

  119. Thank you so much for the comprehensive review, I purchased an HRM pro in November last year to use for Zwift and also to pair with my Garmin 920XT for swim and run – unfortunately, although I can see its reading heart rate before and after a swim when the file goes to upload the heartrate data fails to upload, Garmin has been aware of this issue since last November and still no conclusion apparently it has been escalated as a priority but they can’t give a time frame it will be resolved! I was wondering did you test with a Garmin 920XT or newer Garmin versions?

    Many thanks in advance

  120. Bohdan

    I have questions about the visualization and pulse reading for swimming training with Forerunner 735XT and HRM-Pro in the garmin connect. I can’t see the pulse of my workout on the workout page similar to running training. I see the pulse of my swimming training only on the page heart rate. Explain to me if this is normal or I need to do something?.

  121. Phil Greninger


    Have you test the HRM-Pro with the Peloton+? Currently I have the Garmin HRM-Run and it has worked just fine with the original Peloton, but so far no dice on the new Peloton+. As always, great stuff!


    • Jason S

      It shows my HR on the peloton bike+ screen. Is that the only functionality that you’re looking for?

    • Agree, no issues on my Bike+ or Bike either.

    • Phil G.

      Peloton support replaced the original monitor and handle bar to get the headphone jack and Bluetooth airpods working. However, the Garmin HRM-Run still won’t connect. Based on my online research and feedback from the Peloton tech, I replaced the battery. Still no love.

  122. zico

    Thanks for another great review.
    If I understood correctly it has the same technology that the Suunto Movesense had plus some goodies regarding garmin ecossystem.
    Would it be possible to use the Suunto Movesense Sensor (Bluetooth) with Garmin device and use some of those features?


  123. Jeroen Engel

    He DC, I’m used to Garmin devices ( edge 1030, fenix 3HR several pods and HRM).
    Since a few days 8 started rowing on a Virtufit Ultimate Pro 2i rower with BLE/ANT+ connectivity. However may existing Garmin HRM wouldn’t connect.
    Virtufit explained the rowtrainer needs a HRM with 5 or 5,3 GHz freq.
    The Polar H10 will connect. On Garmins website I’m not able to find any extensive specification for frequencies used by the Pro ( other than 2,4GHz).
    Do you know or expect the Pro will connect?
    Thx for the excellent work for the all the years…

  124. Erik Oliger


    I have the Garmin HRM TRI. Worked great and was able to download heart rate and all that. Loved it for 8 months then the battery died. Replacing it the thing would not pair with my Fenix 6 Pro. Then after 2 weeks was able to get it to pair. Then 3 months later the battery died again. Now it will not pair after another battery change. Im not a swimmer…and i use it a few times a week so this thing is not being pushed to its design limit. For the 129 dollar price Garmin should be ashamed of themselves. Total CRAP!

  125. Greg Atkinson

    Any issues after you change the battery? I have the Blue tri hrm and feel like good chance it doesn’t work as well after the first battery change. The ring is always issue but not sure of ways to improve the battery change process
    ? Thank you

  126. MAGNUS

    Any difference between this and the RD Pod in terms of the running dynamics? Besides the HR data of course…

    Just received both and wondering if there’s a point to wearing/using both if the HR strap ‘does it all’.

    • There’s no Running Dynamics metric differences between the two. Some people see slight differences between GCT Balance, but in theory if they’re both worn correctly, it’ll be the same. In theory.

      I wouldn’t duplicate wearing both of them though.

    • MAGNUS

      Thanks – I assumed as much but thought I’d ask.

      I had the RD Pod before, but like most, lost it… I would look at the metrics but when I lost it I never bothered to pick up another sensor.

      Having the HRM DUAL and a HRM Tri I never bothered with the PRO…

      Received the PRO and RD Pod as part of a partnership so I’ll put the PRO to good use… Will see what comes of the pod.

  127. Bram

    Hi Ray

    I have read the entire review and all replies. Very interesting. I have a Garmin Fenix 6 Pro and I am in doubt for the chest HR strap: Garmin HRM Pro of Polar H10.

    Overall, I think I will decide on the Polar H10 (better strap, interchangeable strap,…). But since I will want to use the strap for basketball as well (thought not as much as cycling and running), I still have questions about the stand alone mode. I understand there is a passive stand alone mode where steps, HR, cal and intensity are sent to GC when using the HR strap without starting the activity. What is not clear to me is what happens when you do start the activity on the watch, then only use the HR strap. Will I receive the same data (steps, HR, cal and intensity), or will I receive full activity data?

    Hope you can help me out with this. Greetings from Amsterdam :-)

  128. Zvonimir

    I am happy I have found so many folks with similar experience as mine. Due DC Rainmaker review, I fell in love with Garmin and Garmin gear. About everything I have ever had from Garmin was great (Fenix 3, then 5x, than 5s for my wife, Garmin Edge 820, Varia vision, varia RTL 510 light…). It is comical, when I look at my Amazon shopping history, to see a sheer number of purchased and returned HRM-TRIs; Garmin replaced all of them, and for last one I lost patience and just bought another one. Same story: unit dies after few swims that happen after battery replacement! For few, they looked OK when they died, but for two they had horrible corrosion and obvious electrochemical processes happening.

    So, for DC Rainmaker: it would be useful for consumers if you would review long term behavior of these devices, replace batteries and test. I would like to know: is HRM PRO better?

    If anybody knows how to improve on battery replacemnt process, and make it closer to original manufacturing, that would be great as well.

    Suoer thanks,

  129. Gil

    Hi buddy, great review, tks !

    My question is related to the usage of HRM pro with Fenix 6X Pro: does it, in fact, add some data to this specific watch ?

    Couldn’t find that piece of info nowhere. Not sure regarding launch times if the features such as Running Dynamics or others were already incorporated onto Fenix 6X Pro ?

    If it’s just a matter of Swim and send the info later I don’t need it. But if the watch itself won’t gather Running Dynamics 2 for instance, then need it.

    Thanks a lot, in advance, best !

  130. Tom

    Looks identical mechanically to the failed design of their other straps, all of which are well known to die after first battery change. Garmin sells $100+ disposable HRM. It’s ridiculous.

    • Pure ZOOG

      Well I must be incredibly lucky (as I believe must be the silent majority) in that I (in my case) have had the HRM-TRI strap since March 2017, and since then I must have changed the battery four or five times with no issue. The strap is in use every day, sometimes multiple times a day, including being submerged in the pool, or washbasin after completing activities. No doubt some people are having issues, but that doesn’t warrant saying it’s a bad design. I’d have no qualms in purchasing a PRO as a replacement when it finally dies.

    • Griff

      That seems like excessive battery drain to me. A battery lasting maybe only a year?

  131. Ken Pakula

    So after some detective work, I realized the Garmin Fenix 6 is NOT compatible with the HRM-Pro rendering its “store and forward” feature useless for swimming. Garmin states that the Fenix and a list of other models will only obtain HR data using the optical sensor. This is an important factor that I wish I knew prior to purchasing the HRM-Pro.

    • Nah, that’s not true (and plenty of people have used it just fine that way). Why do you think that?

    • Gil

      Oh, good to hear that it works in full with the Fenix 6 then !

      But DC, which parameters specifically and for real does HRM Pro effectively adds to the ones Fenix 6X Pro already gathers from himself ?

      Thanks ! much appreciated

    • The Fenix 6, with an HRM-PRO, would gain:

      1) Running Dynamics: Stride Length, Vertical Ratio, Ground Contact Time, Ground Contact Time Balance, and Vertical Oscillation
      2) XC Skiing Power support
      3) Running power support
      4) Offline swim HR caching (well, technically, any sport, but swimming is the most common).

      And then not tied to the Fenix 6 itself, but sorta tied, if you took off your Fenix 6 and went off and played football/soccer/something with just the strap, then you’d get intensity minutes, steps, calories, and heart rate on your 24×7 charts on Garmin Connect mobile.

    • Ken Pakula

      Two reasons why I don’t think the Fenix 6 works with the HRM-Pro:
      (1) I can’t get my HR data from an open water swim using the HRM-Pro and my Fenix 6 and; (2) Garmin’s site states the following:

      “the following watches [includes Fenix series] use an optical sensor on the watch to record heart rate while swimming but a chest strap is recommended for the most accurate data.” …But then Garmin follows up with this “*Note: these devices [Fenix series] are not compatible with the store and forward heart rate feature in the HRM-Pro, HRM-Swim, and HRM-Tri and will only obtain swim heart rate using the optical heart rate sensor.”

      So, which is it – use a heart rate strap for more accurate swim data or don’t use the strap and use the optical sensor because the strap doesn’t work with the Fenix series?

    • Ken Pakula

      My apologies. I just realized the “*Note” on the Garmin page does not apply to the Fenix series so I do not understand why I can’t get heart rate data from my Fenix 6 after a swim; its just not there. Any idea what I could be doing wrong or not setting correctly?

    • Any chance you’ve paired it as a Bluetooth HR strap, and not an ANT+ one? That’d do it.

      You can check that in the sensors menu, open up that sensor and look at the info, it’ll say either ANT+ or Bluetooth Smart.

    • Ken Pakula

      Thanks but I just checked and it does say ANT+. I’m wondering -does the wrist heat rate monitor have to be on at the same time as the heart rate strap? It seems counter intuitive but I’ve turned off the wrist HR monitor since I always rely on the strap….

    • Unless there’s some bizarre bug, that shouldn’t matter.

      What should happen is that if you go to start a swim, before you press start, you’ll want to ensure it shows the strap as paired up and active. Then, for fun, go stick your watch in the microwave. Don’t press start. Please.

      Now, give it a minute, run up and down some step or something.

      Then, go back to your watch, and press stop – and then save. It should ask you if you want to download data from your strap.

      Does it ask you that?

    • Ken Pakula

      I did all that – it prompts for the HR data then says no data then acts like it downloads the data and then there’s no HR data on Garmin Connect only a small blip under Health Stats/HR.

    • That’s weird. Assuming you’ve removing the pairing and re-added it, and assuming the Fenix is up to date, I’m out of ideas.

      Something is definitely wrong there though, that’s a super basic use case that’s been there for almost a decade with the Garmin straps.

    • Ken Pakula

      Thanks – I appreciate your help. I was on the phone with Garmin for over an hour and they finally said “this is a known issue” and recommended taking out the battery and reinserting it and if it doesn’t work after that, they’d send a replacement. I’m about to try that…

    • Ken Pakula

      So, I took out the battery for 3 minutes, put it back in, and then did a test at my desk with the HRM -Pro strap on and “pool swim” on the Fenix 6 and lo and behold, I got heart rate data this time. Weird.
      Thanks again for looking into this for me – much appreciated!

    • Lisa Melvin

      Hi Ken,

      I finally got a replacement HRM- Pro, as I have had this exact same problem with mine and 920XT last year, it worked for two weeks swimming, there was an update available, which I downloaded now past two weeks the same issue again although I can see its reading heart rate before and after a swim when the file goes to upload, says it’s downloading the heartrate data then says no data available.

      I Will try the removing battery remedy to see if it works.

  132. Steven Knapp

    As I understand it Zwift and Traineroad workouts don’t factor into Garmin’s training and recovery metrics. Even if they import into Garmin connect they do not impact training status, for example.

    If I’m wearing the HRM-Pro during a Zwift ride, for example, does the HRM-Pro “fix” that somehow? If it did, that would be a nice feature.

    It’s unclear to me what all these metrics use for input. Just all day HR? Or are workouts dealt with in a specific way?

  133. Sara

    I have never stumbled upon an in-depth review until I read this. Each word satisfies every single brain cell in me. I have a question tho, and it may sound dumb but I am going to ask anyway. Here you go:
    Can I just buy the strap (Garmin HRM-PRO), use it, and just do without a Garmin smartwatch or whatsoever smartwatch?

    • Hi Sara – thanks, appreciate it!

      You can buy their strap and use it, and it will backfill HR data into a Garmin Connect account. Also, it’s completely compatible with any ANT+ or Bluetooth Smart capable app or device from any company. Which means it’ll work with most anything out there except older gym equipment that use legacy analog signals.

      Still, to be honest, I wouldn’t really recommend the HRM-PRO without a Garmin device. There’s other cheaper options like the Wahoo TICKR-X or Polar H10, that do a better job of doing workouts without any extra device (including uploading to platforms like Strava).

      Good luck!

    • kim grundahl pedersen

      hi ,
      you do an amazing work.

      i have tried to find info regarding the running dynamic info ..
      i know that is said many places that a garmin watch is needed, but does that really mean it not even possible to transfer data(running dynamics) to the connect app directly

    • Correct, a Garmin watch is needed, or the Wahoo RIVAL watch (some partial support). Full stop, end.

      There are no apps that I’m aware of that support it (namely, because it’s only on ANT+, and virtually no phone apps these days support ANT+). And no other 3rd parties have bothering adding support. And same goes for Garmin’s Connect app on smartphone, no support there either.

      If you’re looking for running dynamics type metrics without a Garmin watch, I’d recommend the Wahoo TICKR X as your best bet.

  134. Adrian

    Does anyone know if it records the pulse and steps while simultaneously transmitting the pulse via ANT+? I am asking because the Garmin Edge series devices are not a device for measuring daily activity, i.e. they do not record the history of the daily pulse and do not count the minutes of intense activity, so when I ride a bike and I want the intense minutes to be counted, I must have a watch with me. If I connect this heart rate monitor to the Edge and transmit my heart rate data over ANT+, will the heart rate monitor also sync my heart rate history when I reconnect to the watch (or phone) when I return home?

  135. RDomingues

    Hi there. Great review. I have a FR245. Is the Pro offline recording compatible with my watch. Or, if it is not, will the GC update fill the HR data of started activity on the watch or only update the daily hr data totals? Sorry for the english.

  136. Eni

    Hi Ray. When riding a bike I record the activity with my Edge 830. Unfortunately, my Fenix 6 (or FR945) have trouble with the HR, when not in activity mode and usualy no intensity minutes are recorded (figures: watch shows below 100 when I‘m over 150… H10 paired with Edge). Right now, I simultanously record a indoor-bike activity on my watch and discard it in the end (at least gives my RHR too), but that somehow defeats the point in having a separate Bike-Device and a state of the art Watch that should record intensity minutes, regardless of being in an activity mode or not.
    My question is: would the HRM-Pro record the intensity minutes during a bike ride (paired to my Edge), even if I‘m wearing my watch that is not recording anything?

  137. Alexssandro Loyoka

    also had problem with garmin design, crack in same screw. at this point I use a mage tape (China), it doesn’t fail, but it’s not 100% compatible with the edge 820, although it works well with the phoenix 5x. i really liked the polar oh1, but i lost the charger and i can’t find a replacement. it looks like a pen drive, and it’s gone… I have the oh1 in doubt, buy another one or the garmin tape. At this point, the question is the cheap swimming tape or follow with the Chinese tape.

  138. Primo Sipin

    Maybe I didn’t see it in here but I have a dual and was looking into the pro. Saying that would the pod suffice in leiu of the running dynamics? I’m getting the Fénix 6 for the reason of updating to a watch that integrates the running dynamics and MTB.

  139. ugo francica nava

    Great and accurate, as usual!!! Thank you very much DCR!!!

  140. Arya

    Hi Ray, I own a garmin ecosystem with a garmin 935 and garmin edge 530. But I also have a Wahoo Kickr v5 for my Zwifting.

    The thing is, I don’t have a HRM monitor that broadcast Bluetooth for my Zwift at Apple TV. So I need to buy HRM bluetooth. Which one is the best for me, the Wahoo Tickr X or Garmin Hrm Pro? Maybe at the future I will run with Zwift but now I don’t have treadmill. Also after all this cov19 pandemic is over I will train again for triathlon.

    I saw at your review of Tickr X and Hrm Pro, both are great. And that makes me have a tough choice between both of them.

    • Ryan

      HRM Pro

      Tickr X doesn’t do HR offload to the 935 for swimming, and the 935 doesn’t enable it’s HRM for open water swimming if you’re planning on doing triathlon

    • Arya

      Thank you for your help. How about the indoor virtual run on zwift? I read that the HRM Pro doesn’t broadcast pace, but the Tickr X does. Or maybe i will toss the zwift virtual run..

  141. Paul F. Pamrow

    I’ve been using the HRM-PRO for pool laps without any problems – I’m a slower swimmer and simply don’t flip or turn off the wall hard enough for the strap to shimmy down my torso, so this works for me. I thought about getting the pool-specific HRM but in the end I really like what the PRO offered in terms of collecting data when a device can’t be paired – I work in a secure environment where Wi-fi capable devices are prohibited, so I the Fenix3 stays at home when I go in.
    -Paul in Tampa

  142. Paul F. Pamrow


  143. Jason S

    Does this strap provide a more accurate real time pace/speed like the old foot pods? I don’t see a setting for that in my watch to allow the HRM PRO to be used for pace/speed. But maybe it just does it automatically?

  144. Andrew

    Thank you dcrainmaker, really insightful and comprehensive.

    Just to clarify on “There’s ZERO reason to buy this strap over Garmin’s HRM-DUAL strap if you don’t have a Garmin watch”

    I don’t have a garmin watch but I am tending towards the Pro over the Dual as I can do workouts offline and then just connect to the downloaded app and analyse and store my data there? Am I missing something here? The offline connectivity is the big reason to choose one over the other.

    Having said that I am now looking into the wahoo and polar options thanks to this article

  145. David

    Thanks for the review(s) – as always, very informative. I’m actually buying this one, so I’m happy to finally be able to use your affiliate link. Cheers!

  146. Jason S

    Bought my HRM PRO back in Nov 2020, it lasted until this week. Battery died after 10 months of what I’d classify it as light use. I run 20 miles a week max and don’t wear the HR monitor on at least half to 3/4 of my runs. Battery was dead. Put in a new battery and got it working again. Battery was dead again the next morning. Sending back to Garmin for a replacement. Disappointing life span on a product at this price point. I’d advise against buying it. There are posts all over the place about these same issues. Bummer.

  147. Anthony Corcella

    Anyone have any tips for getting this to work with 2 devices at once?

    I’m trying to use it with my Tactix Delta AND either my Peloton or my Tonal. Peloton has BLE and Ant+, the Tonal only has BLE.

    Should I connect to the Tactix via BLE or Ant+?
    For the Peloton, Ant+ or BLE?
    Obviously the Tonal needs to be BLE.


    • Definitely ANT+. Always ANT+ unless you can’t, then BLE. And for Garmin especially, they send more details (well, all the details actually) via ANT+. Whereas via BLE you wouldn’t get things like Running Dynamics metrics.

      So, for you’d I go with:

      A) Tacxtix: ANT+
      B) Peloton: ANT+
      C) Tonal, as you noted: BLE

      The reason for ANT+ on Peloton is simply that it won’t take up channels for anything else. Since ANT+ is unlimited channels, you might as well use that limitless bucket.

    • Anthony V Corcella

      Holy smokes I think it worked! I think switching the watch to ANT+ was really the key. I think it defaulted to BLE (or maybe I set it that way the first pairing) and then nothing would jive while working out. I set it up exactly as you suggested and just used both Peloton and Tonal successfully! Yay no more wearing 2 HRMs! Thanks!!!

  148. Renche Weideman

    I have been struggling with my HRM-Dual straps. Had to buy 2 in a matter of two years. I do crossfit with them 5/6 times a week. Would you rather suggest buying the Pro?

  149. Mark Pavelka

    Anybody know how to connect the HRM-Pro directly to an Apple TV (HD version)? I assumed it would connect via bluetooth but the Apple TV searches and doesn’t find the HRM-Pro (AppleTV->Settings->Remotes and Devices->Bluetooth). I know the HRM is working as I have it connected to a Wahoo Bolt via ANT+, and have successfully connected it to my iPhone via BLE. But still no luck with Apple TV – any suggestions or insight appreciated.

  150. lindemberg

    Can anyone help me? I bought the hrm pro and I synchronized it, the tape is connected to the fenix 6 , but I can’t see the heart rate on my fenix 6 , when I choose race the heart rate doesn’t appear, at the end I have all the race dynamics but I don’t have it in the history the heart rate. I’ve already changed the battery twice. And on my cell phone I’ve tried it on two cell phones and I can’t sync with the app garmin connect, it’s even found by the app but it doesn’t complete the settings. It’s already in firmware 7.4

  151. lindemberg

    who can help me? i have a problem with an hrm pro tape, it does not show the heart rate, even though it is connected to the fenix 6 pro solar watch, when i choose race i can have the race dynamics at the end but i dont have anything to heart rate is also in the history, I have already changed the battery twice. and on the mobile in the connect garmin app the tape is found, but it doesn’t finish the settings and stays still on a single screen.

  152. Vern Smith

    Bought this to solve my problem of very inaccurate wrist heart rate on my Enduro during uphill/backcountry skiing.
    The heart rate monitoring works well when it stays on.
    Garmin changed the shape of the plastic hook and belt. Sent them a note and they were going to pass along to product development.
    Only way that I can get it to stay up and on is duct tape around hook.
    Very irritating when it is under layers of clothing in a skimo race
    any fixes?
    old version on bottom in pic

    • lindemberg

      I managed to exchange it with Garmin in the USA, as Garmin in Brazil does not have a warranty for products purchased outside of Brazil, I am waiting for it to arrive. they only charged me a security deposit because they are sending the new one before sending the defective one to them, and really the tape is only recording the dynamics of the race, the heart rate it doesn’t register.

  153. Peter Z.

    Seems like they could sell the stickier HRM-SWIM strap as accessory to use with HRM-PRO to support pool swimming

  154. Hot damn, this is perfect for my martial arts training.
    Good thing I read your review before buying the HRM-TRI. I’ve been doing TKD for over a decade, and the lack of connection has always been one of the main issues. I take out my watch (for the danger of kicking it to bits) during training but the HRM RUN then is too far away from it to measure properly while training. No more! It’s expensive but it’s exactly what I need.

    Also, the book looks perfect for my daughter :D

  155. Sunny

    Any review of Heart Rate Variability especially for older folks? This is not available on wrist based monitors except for the ECG mode of Apple Watch but it won’t track while sleeping as you need to keep a finger on its crown. Like to know if there is an iphone app to show real time HR data in addition to viewing downloaded data via garmin connect

  156. Vassilis

    Excellent review as always! Congrats, DC.

    One question:
    Suppose that I start an activity (e.g. basketball or HIIT) from my watch and then just use the strap. Will be there any stats missing? Is there a reason why I would actually *prefer* to wear my watch as well?

    Obviously one will use the strap and the watch for running, since the watch gives useful real-time stats, but this is not the case with basketball or crossfit. I would use the watch only if it records critical *additional* data!

  157. Jason Hodgson

    stupid question, so I apologize in advance if i connect the Garmin strap to my Fenix 6 do I then have to disable OHR for workouts or during workouts, so that I know the strap is broadcasting properly, and not competing for want of a better expression with the Fenix 6’s OHR thank you

  158. Zlatko

    How about the feature: training status/load? can the strap measure these stats without me weraing the watch? I have the HRM TRI and i am starting the basketball activity and leave the watch in the locker room. after the game the straps syncs the heart rate data to the watch, but my training status/load is not there/inaccurate.

  159. Tong

    Hello, some feedback after 7 months using it. I bought it on May 25th, 2021 and I replaced the battery on january 14th 2022(only around one jour per day exercises). 2 days after the belt was not connecting anymore. I replaced again with new battery and it did not last more than a night.. i am sending it back to wiggle

  160. Hannah

    This is an excellent review!

    I have a question (or two) – and can’t really find a definitive answer.

    If you use say Forerunner 745 to track daily active levels/calories etc, use zwift/systm for indoor workouts with the just the HRM-Pro, but all other workouts with the forerunner – how does garmin connect deal with that?

    Should you turn your F745 off during that time so you don’t end up with 2 sets of data from the zwift app and a ‘active calorie adjustment’ for the same time period?

    If your HRM-Pro is paired with the F745, would it just pull this data anyway as soon as you turn the F745 back on for the missing HR data? Or would this only happen if you have a timed activity in the Forerunner to then grab the data from the HRM-pro?

    I suppose I’m trying not to end up with double active calories from any combination of F745, HRM-Pro and/or Zwift/Systm…

    Thank you!

  161. Mark Raines

    The important thing is not what it can do now but what it can do in 12 months after the a daily sweating

  162. Gary Gechlik

    I purchased this strap based on this review. It works great and simply connects without a hassle and is comfortable.

    • Tong

      Same for me before I changed battery.. wiggle refunded me;-) Garmin should really find a way to change battery so to keep seal intact and not to drain battery

    • Simon Shaw

      FWIW, I’ve been using this strap since release and never had a problem even after multiple battery changes now.

      The one extra step I do when changing the battery (and don’t know if Garmin would approve or whether it would even invalidate the warranty), is to smear a very small amount of Silicone Grease around the seal when changing the battery.

      link to amazon.co.uk

  163. Gareth Barker

    Will the HTM pro transmit running data to Zwift to negate the need for a zwift run pod?

  164. Otto

    OK, so, here’s a really WEIRD edge-case question:

    Let’s say I’m running with a baby jogger. Normally, a Forerunner/Vivoactive gives ZERO steps from that because there’s no arm-swing.

    Does the HRM-Pro solve that issue? (wondering if its accelerometer would take precedent over the watch – the Garmin Footpod doesn’t *seem* to)

  165. Vassilios

    Hello hello ✌️

    So after purchasing the Wahoo KICKR CORE, and fixing the issues I had with transmission I hit another obstacle. No heart rate from my Apple Watch is recorded from Wahoo Fitness App (note here that I don’t use Zwift, since I am mainly watching something else during the indoor cycling exercise).

    So after a lot of research on your site (thanks once again) I am looking for an HR Strap. I’ve originally ordered a Wahoo TICKR but cancelled it after reading here that they have data issues (dropouts to be more precise). Since I am an Apple Watch user I was looking towards Polar H9 @70 euros & Garmin HRM-Dual @50 euros, however because I am not sure (waiting for the new AW models) whether I will make the switch to Garmin (mainly for the battery) I was also thinking about Garmin HRM-Pro @100 euros (Polar H10 @100 euros doesn’t make any sense tbh).

    So to my questions:
    1) Is Garmin HRM-Dual (PRO) going to work with Wahoo KICKR CORE and Wahoo Fitness app or not?
    2) Is Garmin HRM-Dual a good fit for swimming? I know that the connection underwater is an issue, so to me it doesn’t make any sense for swimming
    3) Do I have to pair HRM-Dual (PRO) to my Apple Watch every time I wear it and before going for a workout or by activating the strap(s) I can assume it’s automatically connected to my Apple Watch?
    4) Should I start looking towards the Garmin Ecosystem and buy in advance the HRM-PRO or am I good with Apple Ecosystem? It’s nice looking at extra data, however I am not sure how serious I am or will be after all.

    By the way I did my first sprint triathlon on my AW and thinks worked extremely well (except the fact that I had to be paranoid with charging the AW at the very last second before leaving home)!!!

    Thanks a lot in advance Ray

  166. Iv Lyu

    If the strap breaks, is it possible to replace it since I can see the sensor is attached to it?

  167. Eric

    After a couple years of use, I am disappointed in the HRM-PRO. Mostly because of HR accuracy issues. I had set the HRM PRO aside after I found the Polar Verity Sense optical sensor to be much more reliable and seemingly accurate and responsive.

    I revisited the HRM PRO this week after Garmin released the HRM PRO PLUS. I know that chest straps are supposed to be the gold standard. The HRM PRO frequently gives me very low HR readings, and often misses HR increases during and after sprints; frequent “cadence lock” instead of actual HR; and incredibly high HR readings–readings that the watch keeps displaying even when I remove the chest strap from by body! When it is on, it’s spot on. These same things happened with two other Garmin chest straps–the HRM PRO did not fix my issues. These issues happen regardless of temperature, humidity, clothing (wool vs synthetic). And all these problems happened during a series of runs just this week.

    For me, the best uses of this strap are biking and Nordic skiing. Perhaps this is because there is less bouncing around when compared to running.

    I am considering getting the Polar H10 for the times that I want a chest strap–your review indicates that the H10 is extremely accurate. But maybe chest straps just don’t work for me.

    • lindemberg

      I have the h10 and the hrm pro, both are very good, I really like the precision of the h10 and the tape is much more comfortable than the hrm pro. I use the hrm pro for running only because it marks the dynamics of the race. In indoor or outdoor cycling and swimming I prefer the h10.

  168. Koly Belostotsky

    Thanks for the detailed review — and sorry for digging out an old post. But I have a few questions on using the HRM-PRO in the pool (I assume any answers would also apply to HRM-SWIM, -TRI and -PRO Plus?). I swim in my Garmin 6 watches, but would like to monitor the heart rate during the swim, not just after. So:
    1. If I don’t start a workout, how long would it be before the watch captures the HR signals from the strap? I mean, I know the optical sensor would be used while in water, but once I stop after doing, say, 200m, what would I do to measure my pulse?
    2. I swim in chunks — like, 4x100m, then a little rest, then 2x200m, a little rest, &c. To see the pulse between the chunks, should I stop/start a new activity? Speaking more broadly, does the synchronisation happen only after the workout is stopped on the watch?
    3. A side question: How accurate is the Fenix 6’s optical sensor while in the water? Would upgrading to Fenix 7 yield any improvements there?

    Thanks in advance for all the answers!

    • Nate C

      Just one person’s experience, but I swim with an HRM-Swim and Fenix 6 pro (now 7x) and I can see my HR on the watch data screens during the swim. I believe it is reading the ant+ strap signal when the watch is close to my chest strap between laps on the wall, and I seem to get readings even if the strap is still submerged a few inches and my watch is just out of the water. I also have the setting turned on for optical HR in the pool though, so it’s possible I’m mistaken and the in-workout numbers I see may be coming from the watch optical sensor. They do generally seem to make sense though based on my perceived exertion and the numbers that get filled in by the HRM Swim with the sync prior to saving the workout.

  169. Gavlar

    Now available from Amazon Germany for under 80 eur

  170. Tom

    Firstly just wanted to say amazing write up as per usual! I have a question about the HRM Pro that I have not been able to find an explicit answer for yet. I would like to grab a HRM pro for use during soccer without a watch however I want to be able to record an activity to ensure the soccer game contributes to my training load. Now by most accounts that is easy – just start the activity, leave watch in bag, come back and stop activity and done. THe question mark comes from the fact that my watch is a forerunner 245 and I have seen mixed accounts of being able to do that with the Forerunner 245M. Do you know if this can be done with the FR245? Almost all of the reviews I have seen for the HRM Pro vaguely mention you can start the activity on your “garmin watch” but there seems to be mixed reviews about the compatibility of the FR245 and being able to record activities watchless.

  171. Ryan

    Is there a way to stop the strap from connecting to my phone and putting crazy numbers into GC? When I set it down it seems to stay turned on for a bit, and if my watch doesn’t have a HR fix yet (usually because of sweat or something) the strap will fill in that gap with insane numbers, like 200+ BPM. Right now all I can think of is unpairing from the phone completely, which kind of defeats the purpose of the strap!

    • Tong

      The inly way would be to send it back to reseller and ask for refund ..i am now only using watch heartrate thiugh inacurrate but not wasting my time with hrm pro from garmin..

  172. Bob

    Anyone have an idea what I was doing wrong last week? I got my new Fenix 7 and used it white playing volleyball with an HRM Pro (and a footpod). Started the activity, put the watch safely in by gym bag and started training. After I was done, I stopped the activity on my watch and it nicely synced the HRM data, but not the steps…. in the past I just carried my old Fenix 5 in my shorts pocket, but I rather not with my 7…

    • Ryan M.

      You don’t need the foot pod. It doesn’t cache data and the HRM-Pro records the steps. The foot pod likely took precedence over the strap.

  173. Vojta B.

    For treadmill (and Zwift) use.
    I have used Stryd for years and now HRM-Pro. Both of them pick up speed and cadence for Zwift but the pace is definitely slower than IRL. It’s frustrating so I’m looking for a better solution. Would RUNN beat Stryd and Garmin HRM-Pro for Zwift treadmill accuracy?

    • Nate C

      Yes, since Runn uses optical sensing on the treadmill belt, it shouldn’t be subject to the inconsistencies of slightly changing gait of a footpod (and I have no idea how HRM-Pro would sense/calculate a decent pace on a treadmill, since the accelerometer would mostly be capturing up/down movement, but I haven’t tried that?)… Out of the box, the calibration should be good and if you have measured your belt or have another accurate way to measure the speed (accurate bike speed/distance magnetic sensor on a measured bike wheel) you can calibrate it with the NPE app.

  174. Gabin Aguayo

    Hello! I’ve seen countless reviews, comparison videos, and reddit posts this past week about sports watches and chest straps (I’ve really enjoyed you being so thorough!). I finally decided on the Garmin FR955 and I’m still undecided on the chest strap. I’m not really interested in the power dynamics since running isn’t my main sports, but CrossFit (which is why I need the chest strap, since most workouts would require me to remove the watch). Now, I’ve seen people mention the Polar H10 can record 1 workout but I’ve also seen that it doesn’t support offloading to watches? I like the fact that the H10 is cheaper and the strap is replaceable, and since the running dynamics isn’t a plus for me, is there any reason why I should get the Garmin Pro Plus over the H10?

    • Bob

      I found it way more accurate and it counts steps as a plus.

    • Olivier

      H10 is great but, for activities without watch, it will typically feed a Polar account, through the Polar Beat app. You can export the activity manually from Polar web platform. But I guess you will need wizardry to import that one into Garmin.

  175. Bobby Wrenn

    Just figured I would make a comment to add to the thread. I have the Garmin HRM-Pro. As of yesterday, my second one died after the first battery replacement, just like the first one. The second time around I knew the battery replacement was an issue, so I was extra careful to make sure I did everything right. Garmin did replace my first one and hopefully they will this one as well. It’s just frustrating when something that should be so simple causes such a huge problem.

    • Bobby Wrenn

      Just an update to add. After contacting customer support they told me to do a few things (check the screen shot). Their trick did not work. At that point they upgraded me to the new HRM-Pro Plus. It came in about a week ago. Hopefully the new battery compartment on this model fixes the issue.

  176. Donny


    I know it’s kind of out of the topic but I know some of the readers might have the same question like me. I’m looking for the sleeve (rubber cover) of the HRM Tri pod because the sleeve has been damaged and I couldn’t find it anywhere.

    Any idea? or link if any of you find one?

  177. Thomas De Jaeger

    If i go pool swimming, would you advise me
    – against wearing the HRM pro?
    – Using the HR monitor built in my Epix Gen 2
    – or buying a HRM-Swim?

    • Hi Thomas, thanks for being a DCR Supporter!

      While the HRM-PRO (or HRM-SWIM) will give you more accurate swim HR data, I don’t tend to find swimming HR data all that valuable. Swimming HR data tends to be very laggy by nature, and most people find their swimming HR zones quite low (in comparison to running or cycling).

      So I’d just use the built-in sensor for now, unless you really want to dig into the data a ton. Accuracy wise, it’s hit or miss (for the optical HR sensor) in the water, and will really be very specific to each person.

      For me, I find it roughly in the ballpark.

  178. Alberto

    Sorry, a question: I have a problem with battery life. It only lasts 1-2 days and I think I need to change the battery gasket. Where can I find the HRM PRO and HRM TRI board? Thank you.