Fitness trackers are fast becoming a crowded marketplace, with each successive brand trying to offer features to appeal to different needs of users. A Garmin watch, an Apple watch, Fitbit, and now Whoop -availability fatigue and indecisiveness can easily make most fitness enthusiasts and professional athletes grimace in frustration at the choice. Both Whoop and Garmin are two of the more popular brands in conversations, but which is better?
In terms of available features, when it comes to design comfort, innovation in health statistics and sleep cycle tracking, Garmin edges ahead of Whoop in a head-to-head comparison. Whoop is making strides with its sleep statistics and recovery data, but Garmin wins the race based on features alone.
Are you trying to decide between Garmin and Whoop fitness trackers? Perhaps you are only looking for the best based on one feature? In this guide, we will help you narrow down your decision by thoroughly reviewing two of the best models of both brands. We will also explore some frequently asked questions to better help you make a decision on which model is best for your active lifestyle.
Which Is Better-Whoop or Garmin Digital Fitness Devices?
When comparing Whoop vs. Garmin, you will find that most Garmin watches of a similar fashion to Whoop are packed with additional features, which you may find useful. This doesn’t automatically make Garmin the superior brand, but it is quite difficult for any competitor to match up to the innovation Garmin places in its products.
Let’s compare one model of each brand to gain a better understanding of the differences.
At a Glance: Garmin Vivoactive 4
This watch is both innovative and technically superior in every way when compared to simpler fitness trackers. It doesn’t matter if you are a professional runner racing to set new standards in time and performance or, a beginner who wants to keep track of their fitness through many different types of sports and activities.
The watch constantly samples your heart rate and will alert you if it stays too high or too low while you’re at rest, even with contact sports. It also helps gauge how hard you work during activities — even underwater.
Track all the ways you move with more than 20 preloaded GPS and indoor sports apps — including walking, running, cycling, pool swimming, golf and more.
Best of all, the Vivoactive 4 has an adaptive fit based on the size of your wrist, which allows you to have the absolute best in fitness tracking with all the best features of a watch.
- Receive emails, texts and alerts right on your watch when paired with a compatible smartphone
- Gyroscope technology allows you to measure movements and velocity among a wide array of customizable inputs
- Unfortunately, the Vivoactive 4 just doesn’t do well with body battery life capabilities, especially when compared to other models in the Garmin line. This can be expected though due to the increased amount of superior features that have been added to the Vivoactive 4
For a more in-depth review of this smartwatch, check out our full review of the Garmin Vivoactive 4 here.
At a Glance: Whoop 4.0
Whoop is a brand that is known for its superb fitness tracking capabilities in tandem with a sleek and comfortable design within the fitness tracker market. The Whoop 4.0 excels at measuring heart rate, heart rate variability, skin temperature, skin conductance, respiratory rate, pulse oximetry, and your overall movement.
This is a large arsenal of targeted health statistics, but what this all essentially ties to is the health monitor feature. Within this monitor, tracking sensors can alert users to possible warning signs of Covid-19, which is an innovative and useful feature when compared to all your data and signs of abnormalities.
In addition to these new features, the new and improved 4.0 also includes wireless charging and a new and improved waterproof battery pack.
- When it comes to sleep tracking, the 4.0 edition of Whoop is superb. All your sleep stages can be accurately tracked as well as overall sleep efficiency
- A convenient health monitor overview shows you further insights into your heart rate variability and also targets adequate recovery data if your health is in decline due to illness
- A Whoop band comes with several additional memberships, which is indicative of the perils of a new device/brand, but still a drag on potential customers when compared to other similar brands without numerous monthly costs
- This model doesn’t track a lot of basic fitness tracker features like steps, again when compared to other brands in the field
Garmin vs Whoop Comparison
For a design comparison between Garmin watches vs. Whoop, both models are known for wrist comfort. But Whoop is very lightweight and practically weightless on the wrist, which is perfect for something like contact sports.
Where Whoop pales in comparison to Garmin in this category, is in terms of display.
Unlike with a Garmin watch, a Whoop strap has no visible display, which means you have to log into the app on a smartphone to view your peak performance statistics.
Any style of fitness trackers from both brands are great, but Garmin Connect is a bit better in terms of analyzing what your results mean based on the peak performance results displayed.
A Whoop strap is also good at this, especially with the 4.0’s new health monitoring feature, giving your body a recovery score in addition to further analysis, however, it still does not stack up to Garmin watches.
In the Garmin watch vs. Whoop comparison, Whoop takes this category by a slight margin.
Most Garmin watches, and Apple watch models as well, will only display sleep quality features in certain protocols, but a Whoop strap makes it to where the sleep analysis technology works with the same protocols as each fitness tracking protocol.
This sleep analysis is quite innovative, but it must also be said that a Garmin watch through the Garmin app can also do most of this, minus some of the detailed analysis that you can find in a Whoop strap.
Heart Rate Variability & Monitoring
Both a Whoop woven strap and Garmin watches give accurate data on resting heart rate and heart rate variability (HRV).
A Whoop woven strap’s recovery score and the Garmin Body Battery energy monitor show you how your body is prepared for another day of training. The scores depend on sleep quality, resting heart rate, and HRV.
There are some slight differences but a Whoop strap and Garmin watches give similar sleep, heart rate, and recovery analysis. But due to the slight uptick in analysis of a Whoop strap, which is even more enhanced when using a bicep band, allows Whoop to slightly edge ahead in this category.
Garmin Connect App vs. Whoop App
The connected GPS Garmin app includes handy features like Garmin pay and Garmin track, as well as enhanced features based on the model you purchase.
The main problem with a Whoop strap in this category are the Whoop subscription monthly costs that come with each woven strap. These prices will be necessary to access features like recovery score, heart rate, blood oxygen level, and many others.
Since each Whoop strap only displays data in the app, you will have to pick a subscription plan to view results.
Garmin vs Whoop: FAQs
Is there anything better than WHOOP?
A Whoop strap is an amazing piece of technology in the world of fitness trackers, but Garmin watches thanks to connected GPS protocols, are truly hard to beat.
Tracking your blood oxygen level, heart rate, recovery score, and yes, sleep reports, is all great with a Whoop strap, but in terms of battery life, body battery technology, blood oxygen measurements across many different activities, including contact sports, and more, I find Garmin to be slightly superior in terms of available features.
Does Whoop work with a Garmin watch?
A Whoop strap actually does work with the Garmin application, and this is good news if you already have a Garmin and want to try out a Whoop strap.
This works well in terms of reading your heart rate, and you can get further insights from something like contact sports health statistics as well.
Your Whoop strap will not pick up all the features you can get with Garmin, such as body battery readings, but there are more than enough features to access and read through the Garmin application by way of your Whoop strap.
Is Whoop worth the money?
Whoop is a great brand of fitness trackers based solely on the innovative heart rate and sleep statistics technology alone. But the bands likely aren’t for everybody.
The main con to be found with this company are the numerous subscriptions that many users find to be incredibly frustrating.
The battery life also isn’t as great when compared to other brands, specifically when compared to Garmin’s body battery technology, but this isn’t to say that the battery of a Whoop is bad, it’s just not as great as other brands.
A Whoop is worth the money granted you take into account some of the negatives posted about the brand.
Is Whoop, Apple watch, or Oura more accurate?
Whoop has incredible accuracy when compared to Apple or Oura. The GPS in a Whoop device is highly targeted and well-calibrated, which is something that constantly is complained about in the Apple series of smartwatches.
However, the accuracy of an Oura is also superb and maintains a high industry standard rating for accurate measurements in real time.
So, it really depends on which of these brands you prefer the most. Accuracy is adequate and exceeds expectations in each brand overall.
If you are truly wanting the best brand of fitness tracker in terms of sleep quality tracking and yes, sleep reports, then feel free to go with Whoop.
But in an overall comparison, Garmin is sure to have a model of fitness tracker to suit your needs. Garmin is also incredible in terms of sleep tracking, and battery life with body battery technology, which is an added bonus when combined with the many features you will have at your disposal for your active lifestyle.