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Swimming with 5X and Mio Link - no heart data in GC

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  • Swimming with 5X and Mio Link - no heart data in GC

    Hi Everyone,

    I had a pool swim today while having my 5X connected to MioLink heart monitor wearing it next to the watch. Watch was performing flawlessly and detected all my laps accurately. It also was reporting heart rate from MioLink as I checked that watch own monitor was off. After finishing my swim I synced my watch with GC and found that my swim activity is missing heart rate data (https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/1655510760). Tried to look for information on the topic and found this thread on Fenix 3 (https://forums.garmin.com/archive/in.../t-324350.html) which didn't get anywhere, although there were a lot of discussion on inaccurate measurements, technical problems of implementing this for pool swim, and Garmin desire to protect its own chest straps monitors.

    Does anyone know why Garmin deliberately not saving heart rate data for pool swim activity into GC? Or maybe I am missing some settings? I really really want to believe that I just not set something right?

    In the thread I mention people were saying that there is technical issues preventing heart rate data to be saved properly (like because it is laps), but I checked my daily summary page (https://connect.garmin.com/modern/da...04-02/timeline) and I can see heart rate data during my swim (although with 2 min intervals), so I believe it is technically possible and can be done. Another argument which was given in another thread was that Garmin doesn't want to deal with inaccuracy issue which creates a lot customer support. I believe they do the same disclaimer for UltraTrac mode - which is very similar issue to this. This leaves only last argument that Garmin is trying to protect their own chest straps for swimming. I somewhat can understand that, but at the same time I think Garmin is missing some opportunity. I personally will never ever use chest strap for swimming. Period. I also know a lot of people who swim and they won't use it either. At the same time a lot of people would use wrist-based monitor and I think Garmin should make one (I believe the main problem of inaccuracy is that water changes reflection of the skin, but there are solutions to make sensor-skin attachment completely waterproofed which could solve the problem) or at least allow people to use existing third party ones.

    I was literally writing Facebook post about my experience in swimming pool today planning to recommend my setup to other people and found out that heart rate data is missing from activity and now I don't even want to post it, because I am disappointed that I have to look at my daily summary page to figure out what was my heart rate during the swim..., so please someone tell me that it is fixed and I am just missing some proper settings for this? Please save the day.

  • #2
    As you have read the F3 thread on the same topic, I can't see how you will expect to get any new information in this thread. Whether you agree or disagree with Garmin, they have stood by their "policy" Given that you can't record your HR with the watch's built in Optical HR sensor during pool swims, I don't think you should expect it to be allowed with a third party Optical HR sensor. I'm not trying to defend Garmin and have questioned why it works with an open water swim but not pool (I'm making an assumption that this is still the case with the 5X) - I'm just doubtful you'll get anywhere trying again - can't hurt to try I guess.

    Comment


    • #3
      I had almost the same setup, but mine was the Mio Fuse.
      I sold the Mio Fuse and bought the Garmin HRM-Swim chest strap.

      Now I have heat rate swim data saved.
      Fenix 5X, HRM-Swim

      Comment


      • #4
        Yes, I know about HRM-Swim and I have tried it before. Don't feel comfortable swimming with it and it keeps me feeling that it is about to move every time I flip, so it is not an option for me Also, Mio Link shows me the zone which is good to know while controlling your pace. I guess I'll have to think some other way to get this data so I can analyze it and compare between swims. Wondering if HRM-Swim would work if put on my shoulder.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Belarusian View Post
          Yes, I know about HRM-Swim and I have tried it before. Don't feel comfortable swimming with it and it keeps me feeling that it is about to move every time I flip, so it is not an option for me Also, Mio Link shows me the zone which is good to know while controlling your pace. I guess I'll have to think some other way to get this data so I can analyze it and compare between swims. Wondering if HRM-Swim would work if put on my shoulder.
          Whats needed is a HRM that stores the data locally on the monitor during the activity and then uploads it at the end when out of the water, since there is no longer the water barrier stopping the signal, which is how the Garmin watches are programmed to do.

          I havent found any other HRM that does this or would be compatible with Garmin.
          I dont like the chest strap either as it has slide down a couple of times, so I tape it in place now.

          Maybe an ear based one would be better, built into headphones, but it has to be compatible with Garmin protocol for uploading post the swim.
          Fenix 5X, HRM-Swim

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Belarusian View Post
            Wondering if HRM-Swim would work if put on my shoulder.
            Unlikely. Even if it detected pulse the results might be not satisfactory.
            Current: nuvi 255, eTrex 30, Forerunner 310XT, Forerunner 735XT, HRM-Tri, HRM-Swim, SDM4, Virb Elite, tempe
            Retired: eTrex Legend, Swim

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Belarusian View Post
              Yes, I know about HRM-Swim and I have tried it before. Don't feel comfortable swimming with it and it keeps me feeling that it is about to move every time I flip, so it is not an option for me Also, Mio Link shows me the zone which is good to know while controlling your pace. I guess I'll have to think some other way to get this data so I can analyze it and compare between swims. Wondering if HRM-Swim would work if put on my shoulder.
              Hi, if I am correct, the chest-strap HRM record HR based on electric discharges of the heart muscles so it needs to be on the chest.

              I am also disappointed that they do not allow HR to be recorded under water or at least to be able to pair with an optical HRM and record the data. I've read all I can on the subject and it seems that it is related to the way Garmin encodes the information for Indoor Pool which is different than Open Water (gps based). It should normally be possible to record HR in Open Water mode with an optical HRM, but this is not really helpful for lap swimmers.

              I guess that it would require significant developments to change the way it is coded so unfortunately it seems that this won't be fixed anytime soon.

              However, I hope that someone has more recent / better news than me on the subject...

              Comment


              • #8
                I guess, I'll have to find cheap/used vivoactive hr watch and use them for logging heart rate while swimming (putting them into running or whatever other mode which records HR) so it can be automatically uploaded into GC along with actual swim activity from 5X. Sounds really ugly, but I think it should work. I need to find someone to borrow them and do some testing.

                Comment


                • #9
                  http://gotoes.org/strava/index.php has a bunch of tools, one of which will combine a HR fit/TCX file with a fit/TCX position file. never tried it so can't talk about any limitations/restrictions and how it works.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Aiace WALK

                    Originally posted by Belarusian View Post
                    Hi Everyone,

                    Does anyone know why Garmin deliberately not saving heart rate data for pool swim activity into GC? Or maybe I am missing some settings? I really really want to believe that I just not set something right?
                    You will have read that they purposely disable it as their extensive testing shows it isn't accurate enough - not just because of the optical sensor on the watch but also when you use an external broadcasting monitor because Ant+/Bluetooth signals aren't strong enough to transmit in through water. The swim strap works because it stores the data and then transfers it across to the watch after you are finished with your swim.
                    You might see the heart rate when you stop and check your watch, but you can't see if it's steadily recording while your arm is going in and out of the water.

                    Having said that - there is an app that allows you to record a separate heart-rate track on an activity. The main purpose of this is so you could record heart rate from an external strap at the same time as recording the data from the optical sensor, but it may let you record heart rate data to a swim activity? I haven't tested it myself so I couldn't confirm if it does but maybe give it a try?
                    https://apps.garmin.com/en-GB/apps/8...7-3e15ca00185f

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Thanks Carl, sounds like an app I am looking for! I guess I just need to add this data field to my pool swim activity and set it up to use my external wrist band monitor and it should record heart rate and automatically add it to fit file. I'll give it a try tonight and will report results!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Could anyone share .fit file of pool swim activity with heart rate data from HRM-Swim?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Belarusian View Post
                          Could anyone share .fit file of pool swim activity with heart rate data from HRM-Swim?
                          Here you go:
                          https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/1533218102

                          Yeah, I know, I'm a lousy swimmer. But working hard to make progress.

                          I will keep this activity public for a couple of days, and then I'll make it private again.
                          Current: nuvi 255, eTrex 30, Forerunner 310XT, Forerunner 735XT, HRM-Tri, HRM-Swim, SDM4, Virb Elite, tempe
                          Retired: eTrex Legend, Swim

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Thank you tmk2, unfortunately I can't access .fit file from your activity, the menu doesn't give an option to download original file. Could you download it and share the file itself?

                            I have investigated suggested Aux Heart Rate data field app and found that it doesn't show heart rate logged for swimming activity. Moreover, I did some more investigation and finally understood why it is not as trivial as it looks like. .fit file for pool swimming doesn't have records for each second, instead it has records for each stroke which is definitely not every second. Fortunately each stroke record has timestamp. I believe Garmin is appending heart rate data to swim records in a special way, so later they can match stroke records and heart rate data using timestamps. I am trying to understand if there is a possibility to create modified Aux Heart Rate data field which would write the data into .fit file in a such way that it would be matched to stroke records. Before asking on developers forum I would like to look what exactly is stored inside .fit file with HRM-Swim heart rate and how.

                            Thanks again for your help!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Belarusian View Post
                              Thank you tmk2, unfortunately I can't access .fit file from your activity, the menu doesn't give an option to download original file. Could you download it and share the file itself?
                              Sure thing.
                              1533218102.zip

                              And since I included the original fit file I made the activity in Garmin Connect private again, so if anyone is still interested, then please use the attached file.
                              Current: nuvi 255, eTrex 30, Forerunner 310XT, Forerunner 735XT, HRM-Tri, HRM-Swim, SDM4, Virb Elite, tempe
                              Retired: eTrex Legend, Swim

                              Comment

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