March 4, 2024

The best smartwatches for swimming in 2024

These wearable devices will track metrics such as swim distance, pace, stroke count, SWOLF, and underwater heart rate.

Many people choose a smartwatch with specific health and fitness goals in mind. There are many smartwatches on the market, but they all offer a different set of features and functionality. While it’s pretty easy to find a smartwatch designed specifically for running, it’s a little harder to find one marketed for swimming. Just because a device is waterproof doesn’t necessarily mean it’s suitable for tracking lengths in the pool and beyond.




I’ve delved into the specific specs and water-related capabilities of dozens of smartwatches on the market to find those that actually offer useful features for swimming and diving. Some focus primarily on swimming or sports performance, while others combine impressive smart connectivity functionality with solid swimming metrics. The right watch for you will depend on your goals and preferences.

Related

Best waterproof headphones: Durable headphones from JBL, Shokz, and more

Good headphones not only fit well and sound great, but they can also survive and thrive during rain, sweat, and swimming sessions.

Whether you’re looking to record basic swimming stats, train for a triathlon, or scuba dive, these are some of the best smartwatches for swimming and other water sports, with the proof in the product details and, more often than not, in our own rigorous product reviews.

  • A Garmin Swim 2 smart watch on a white background.

    Garmin swim 2

    Best overall smartwatch

    Garmin Swim 2 is designed exclusively with swimmers in mind and can measure your heart rate as you move through the water. In addition to tracking GPS and swimming distance in the pool, you can record pace, stroke count, distance per stroke, SWOLF (swimming efficiency), and even keep up with breaks, timed sets, and exercises register. The Swim 2 is water resistant up to 50 m and has a long-lasting battery. Plus, it can track your sleep. If you don’t need a lot of extra smartwatch features, this one offers the most swimming metrics for the price.

  • A Garmin Forerunner 965 on white background

    Garmin Forerunner 965

    The best triathlon smartwatch

    While expensive, the Garmin Forerunner 965 is a worthwhile purchase for serious triathletes and open water swimmers. This premium performance-focused smartwatch boasts impressive specs and advanced health, fitness and connectivity features, including blood oxygen and heart rate. Record essential swimming statistics like distance, pace, stroke count and SWOLF and maximize your training with distance alerts, pace alerts, rest timers and exercise logging. Additionally, there are dedicated triathlon and run/swim modes.

  • Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 watch on white background.

    Samsung Galaxy Watch 6

    The best smartwatch for Android users

    Android users will be hard-pressed to find a more capable smartwatch than the Samsung Galaxy Watch 6. It comes equipped with a full suite of health and fitness features, as well as connectivity features, including support for third-party swimming apps like swim.com. In addition to being waterproof up to 50 m, it meets the MIL-STD-810 rating to withstand extreme environmental conditions and stressors. There’s also a handy water lock to prevent the touchscreen from activating during swimming.

  • Polar Ignite 3 watch on white background.

    Polar ignition 3

    The best smart watch for training

    The Polar Ignite 3 offers reliable swim tracking. For both pool and open water swimming, you can track pace and distance, strokes per minute or pool length and SWOLF score, as well as your open water GPS route. In addition to swimming, notable features include advanced sleep tracking and personalized on-demand training guidance via the Polar Flow app, as well as an impressive 30-hour battery life. It’s also more affordable than some of its competitors with similar features.

  • Apple Watch Ultra 2 on white background

    Apple Watch Ultra 2

    The best smartwatch for iOS

    Apple Watch Ultra 2 features a rugged design that’s better suited for outdoor adventures. It has a stronger waterproof rating up to a depth of 100m instead of 50m, meaning you can use it for recreational diving and high-speed water sports. The Ultra 2 can track swimming distance, pace, stroke splits, and heart rate in the pool, lakes, or ocean. It also offers the most complete smartwatch experience for iOS users, offering seamless integration with Apple services.

  • Kospet X1 tank on white background.

    Kospet Tank X1 Fitness Tracker

    The best cheap smartwatch

    The Kospet Tank X1 is tough and built to last. It features a lightweight body made of titanium and zinc alloy, while its bright AMOLED display is reinforced with Corning Gorilla Glass. The Tank It can track over 70 sports, heart rate, blood oxygen, and more, but most impressively, it has a 50-day battery life in standby mode.

  • Apple Watch SE on white background

    Apple Watch SE (2nd generation)

    Second best smartwatch for iOS

    The Apple Watch SE offers many of the same features as the Series 9 but for a significantly lower price. It’s the best value in terms of functionality and performance given the price, but it requires an iPhone. While it lacks some of the more advanced metrics like ECG and body temperature, swim tracking is comparable. For both pool and open water swimming, it will track distance, pace, splits and heart rate at depths up to 50 meters.

  • Garmin descent G1 on white background

    Garmin G1 Downhill

    The best smart watch for diving

    The Garmin Descent G1 is basically a rugged, durable dive computer for your wrist. It features multiple customizable dive modes, including technical and freediving, as well as GPS tracking, multi-GNSS surface, tide, wave and surf data, and a built-in 3-axis diving compass. Additionally, you can choose from over 30 workout types and receive real-time training status alerts (undertraining, overtraining, or optimal training) and calculated recovery time recommendations.

One of the most common concerns when it comes to swimming with your smartwatch is whether prolonged use in water will slowly damage the smartwatch and shorten its lifespan. To avoid these problems, it is important to invest in a quality portable device and know exactly what its limitations are. As long as you only use the watch at appropriate depths and do not keep it underwater for longer than the recommended time limit, your watch’s hardware and software should be relatively unaffected.


If you want to be extra careful, you can rinse your watch with clean water after swimming in a chlorinated pool or ocean. It is more important to be careful when washing your hands to ensure that soap or soapy water does not come into contact with your device. Otherwise, your smartwatch should work fine, even if you manage to squeeze in a swimming workout every day of the week.

Related

Best budget smartwatches: compare models from Apple, Samsung and more

Start the new year with wearable devices that offer solid fitness tracking for less.

How important are other smartwatch functions?

This really comes down to preference. If you’re looking for a smartwatch that’s great for swimming but also just as useful for everyday productivity, then you’ll want to consider more versatile models like the Apple Watch Ultra 2, Apple Watch SE, or the Samsung Galaxy 6. On the other hand, if Its primary goal is to improve athletic performance, the Garmin Swim 2, Garmin Forerunner 965, or Polar Ignite 3 might be a better choice. Of course, there are even more specialized smartwatches, like the Garmin Descent G1 or the Kospet Tank X1, for those with really specific goals on the water. However, when it comes to swimming, all the smartwatches on our list will serve you well.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *