Best Health Monitor Watches for Seniors

The self-health monitoring wearable device industry has shot through the roof in the last 6-7 years. The companies at the forefront of the technology have also been able to drive a wide adoption rate for this fitness tracking culture.

Thanks to wearable health monitors, the common man is now able to closely track a lot of health and fitness parameters, including heart rates, burnt calories in an exercise routine, oxygen levels in the blood as also workout tracking parameters like distance covered and steps taken.

The table below provides a quick snapshot of the best health monitor watches for seniors. You can also scroll down for greater details.

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  • Accurately measures the distance travelled through built-in GPS tracker
  • Extremely accurate cardiovascular health monitor and fitness statistics
  • Fall detection technology
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  • Sleep tracker with comprehensive analysis of different stages of sleep
  • You can track your heart rate across a wide variety of workouts
  • Low charging time
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  • Comes in 10 band colors
  • Battery lasts for 5 – 10 days
  • Cost effective solution to tracking heart health
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  • Continuous and very accurate heart rate monitoring
  • Provides sleep pattern tracking across the different phases of sleep
  • Colour touchscreen
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  • GPS enabled
  • Steps tracking, heart rate tracking and comprehensive health and fitness statistics
  • Good option for lightly built wrists
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  • Available in six colors
  • Large screen
  • Compatible with both android and apple iOS
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Health Monitor Watch for Seniors

The self-health monitoring wearable device industry has shot through the roof in the last 6-7 years. The companies at the forefront of the technology have also been able to drive a wide adoption rate for this fitness tracking culture.

Thanks to wearable health monitors, the common man is now able to closely track a lot of health and fitness parameters, including heart rates, burnt calories in an exercise routine, oxygen levels in the blood as also workout tracking parameters like distance covered and steps taken.

For the elderly, self-tracking of health parameters is not a new phenomenon. However, the size of the devices has shrunk over time and become more convenient to carry along.

Convenience has probably reached its most optimum level with the wearables and it has made it extremely easy for older aged people to track their health parameters on the go.

Since the elderly population is at heightened risk of cardiovascular health deterioration, wearables have found ready acceptance among this community and are also recommended by doctors, health programs and insurance companies as an effective means of preventing health issues.

You may also like to read about: Best Pedometer for Seniors

The Technology Leaders: Apple & Fitbit | Others Follow

Till sometime, Fitbit was the market leader in this space. Until Apple stepped in. Today Apple controls about 50 per cent of the global wearable health monitoring device market and Fitbit has another 25 per cent.

Fitbit has been losing market share of late, with Apple cornering the premium market and a lot of fringe players attacking by offering cost effective solutions.

However, in November 2019, Google has bought out Fitbit and the stage is set for touch competition between the two technology behemoths – Apple & Google. Companies like Xiaomi and Garmin bring up the cost-effective end of fitness wearable market and are good choices if you are not looking for heavy duty health tracking.

A whole host of companies have started offering budget watches and have played their role in expanding user base for smart watches and fitness trackers. However, you should consider exercising due caution while buying these products as these range of watches have their fair share of products where measurement accuracy is below par.

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What Can Health Monitor Watches Do?

In terms of software development for the health monitoring watches, Apple has bulldozed ahead of the race with technology which is much more accurate in measuring your health and workout parameters.

In fact, in a latest release of its operating system, Apple has included a dedicated fitness and workout tracking mode for wheelchair users. Similarly, it has released its latest model (Series 5) with a dedicated feature for the elderly – a ‘fall detect’ technology – which is an effective feature in times of distress.

If the fall detected is hard enough, the watch sounds an alarm, taps the user on the wrist as a waking up mechanism and displays an alert message on the screen.

The only drawback in case of an apple product is that it does not support third party developers like Fitbit does and you cannot change the look and feel of your health monitoring watch regularly.

Some watches have started providing blood pressure monitoring technology as well, which is also a very useful feature for the elderly with hypertension and allied health conditions.

The above features are over and above the customary features of tracking heart rate, monitoring your sleep patterns, counting the calories burnt during a workout as well as the customary pedometer or step counter.

Recent Technological Upgrades in Health Monitoring Watches

From the rudimentary feature of counting the number of steps taken in a day also called a pedometer, fitness trackers have come a long way in terms of technology and are capable of measuring a plethora of your physiological and health factors with high degree of accuracy. The most recent features include:

Workout Tracking:

  • Fitness trackers have started incorporating a global positioning system (GPS) for enhanced accuracy in tracking of distances covered and speeds achieved

Health Tracking:

  • SpO2 sensor (Pulse Oxymeter) for measuring oxygen levels in blood. This is just a reading as of now and companies avoid suggesting any medical condition or remedy based on this data, due to absence of FDA approval
  • ECG app to monitor cardiovascular health and changes in heart rates of users

Both these health tracking features are extremely relevant for the elderly, who are at greater risk of cardiovascular diseases and these technological improvements have allowed to measure heart rates and blood oxygen levels with high degree of accuracy.

Convenience:

  • NFC (Near Field Communication) which is used for contactless payments (immensely helpful for paying relatively smaller amounts in situations like that caused by the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020)

In this article, we will review a few of the best-selling devices in the health monitoring watch space which can help you in making the right buying decision. All the devices below can measure heart rate, which we think is a critical feature to have for elderly users. (Note: Although Google has bought out Fitbit, the products are still sold under Fitbit’s brand name)

Also Read: Best Baby Monitor for Elderly

#1 Apple Watch Series 5 Smart watch

As the most recent health monitor watch to be released by Apple, the product runs on the latest Apple OS 6 software.

Apple Watch Series 5 Smart watch

While the Apple Series 3 was available in 38 mm & 40 mm screen sizes, the Apple Watch series 5 is available in 2 sizes of 40 mm & 44 mm, larger than previous versions by utilizing the bevel margins better.

The watch also has an upgrade in terms of processing power, running on a dual core S5 processor (faster than the previously existing S3 processor). Faster processing speeds mean your concurrent apps can run faster without noticeable lag.

Pros

  • Accurately measures the distance travelled through built-in GPS tracker
  • Extremely accurate cardiovascular heath monitor and fitness statistics
  • Fall detection technology – very useful feature for the elderly
  • Built in compass never lets you feel disoriented
  • Integrates Apple Pay which runs on NFC technology and lets you make contact less payments at enabled stores
  • Great processing power, can concurrently handle multiple features with ease

Cons

  • Given most senior members have fixed and moderate income, this watch may not be a suitable candidate for them – It is the most expensive product in the market, like all latest Apple products
  • Only compatible with Iphones
  • May look a bit larger on small wrists

Here we have a video featuring Apple Watch Series 5 Smart watch.

Apple Watch Series 5 review: the best smartwatch

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#2 Fitbit Inspire HR

The Fitbit Inspire HR is a sleek heath and fitness tracker watch which lets you track health indicators for 15 different modes of exercising. It let’s you monitor your heart beat throughout the day with summarized heart rate zone information.

Fitbit Inspire HR

The watch is water resistant up to 50 meters, though it is not advisable to wear it and go below heated water or in a sauna room.

Pros

  • Sleep tracker with comprehensive analysis of different stages of sleep – light, rapid eye movement phase (REM) & non-REM
  • You can track your heart rate across a wide variety of workouts – resting heart rate, walking, light work out as well as running – and see your heart rate zones
  • When synced with your phone, you can receive alerts for calls, texts and calendar events
  • Low charging time (about 2 hours from 10 per cent to 100 per cent charge)

Cons

  • Battery life is shorter than comparable products, given the product does not have a color display
  • No in-built GPS for accurate tracking of distance traveled. However, you can connect the device with your phone GPS to track distance and speeds

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#3 Lintelek Fitness Tracker

This is a cost-effective health tracking watch which lets you monitor your heart rate, sleeping patterns and calories burnt during the day. This product is great for people who would want a tracking device within a tight budget.

Lintelek Fitness Tracker

There are fourteen modes of exercises, across which you can track your fitness parameters.

Pros

  • The watch has a special feature for elderly people which is called ‘sedentary’ state reminder, and encourages you to be active after a period of lull in activity
  • Comes in 10 band colors
  • Battery lasts for 5 – 10 days, depending on your usage pattern
  • Cost effective solution to tracking heart health

Cons

  • Accuracy in monitoring of health parameters (heart rate and sleep tracking) can be an issue in some cases
  • Screen may be too small for seniors to understand readings, you need to install an app to be able to read the numbers on a larger screen
  • No feature to track blood oxygen levels

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#4 Fitbit Versa 2 Health and Fitness Smart Watch

Running on the Fitbit operating system 3.0, this fitness tracking device is one of the most advanced from the Fitbit (now Google) stable of products. The watch has a touchscreen and you can swipe on the screen to access the different fitness tracking options.

Fitbit Versa 2 Health and Fitness Smart Watch

The versa has a lot of third party options which you can use to regularly change the look and feel of your watch, much like a desktop or phone theme.

Pros

  • Continuous and very accurate heart rate monitoring
  • Provides sleep pattern tracking across the different phases of sleep
  • Colour touchscreen, looks much more aesthetic
  • Scratch proof gorilla glass lets you use the device a bit more freely and not worry about scratches on your new buy
  • Water resistant up to 50 meters
  • Wider screen compiles a lot more fitness statistics on the same screen; helpful for the elderly to be able to read larger numbers from the screen
  • The watch has its own music storage and does not require you to carry your smartphone if you would want to go out for a walk
  • Can be integrated with Amazon Alexa

Cons

  • Battery life may be shorter compared to other Fitbit devices. This is mainly due the colour touchscreen. Also depends on your usage pattern.
  • No GPS for speed tracking

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#5 Garmin Forerunner 35

This is a top end Garmin activity tracker with GPS and wrist-based heart rate monitoring technology and with different fitness tracking modes. This device can seamlessly connect to your phone (compatible models) and show notifications on the go.

Garmin Forerunner 35

Pros

  • GPS enabled; lets you accurately measure distance and speed
  • Steps tracking, heart rate tracking and comprehensive health and fitness statistics
  • Good option for lightly built wrists
  • Can track change in elevation; good way to tell whether you have been wheeling uphill or downhill.
  • Good option if you are a casual fitness enthusiast
  • Good battery life
  • Option to upload data on Garmin Connect and interact on fitness community

Cons

  • No music storage of its own.
  • Monochrome black and white display
  • Not compatible with some smart phones. Please check your phone compatibility before buying

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#6 Letsfit Smart Watch, Fitness Tracker with Heart Rate Monitor

This product comes with all the standard features of a heart rate tracker, a pedometer from tracking steps, sleep quality monitor and workout monitor. The device can be integrated and synced with your smartphone through an app and can be used to get notifications for messages and calls.

Letsfit Smart Watch, Fitness Tracker with Heart Rate Monitor

Pros

  • Available in six colors
  • Large screen allows elderly people to read numbers easily from the watch
  • Compatible with both android and apple iOS and can be synced with most smartphones
  • Budget friendly option for the elderly
  • Good battery life of 5-10 days on a single full charge, depending on your usage
  • 1-year warranty on product

Cons

  • The product has not incorporated GPS and SpO2 and cannot monitor your blood oxygen levels.
  • Accuracy of parameters reported can be an issue at times

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#7 HalfSun Fitness Tracker and Health Monitor Watch

The HalfSun Health Monitor watch is a generously priced device which can track heart rate, monitor your blood pressure, monitor your sleep patterns, count the calories burnt during a workout and also has the customary pedometer or step counter.

HalfSun Fitness Tracker and Health Monitor Watch

The watch can be connected with your smartphone via Bluetooth to track your health on the phone app and also to sync call and SMS notifications on your watch.

Pros

  • Blood pressure monitor is an effective measure of the health of the elderly and is very useful, especially for users with blood pressure related conditions
  • Reminds you to be active when you have been living a sedentary lifestyle
  • Incoming call and SMS notifications when synced with your phone
  • Compatible with most android and iphones
  • High Definition attractive color display
  • Low battery charging time of 1 hour
  • Good value for the price

Cons

  • After using for some months, battery performance dips and lasts for about 2 – 4 days; Lower compared to similar products
  • The watch connects to your smartphone through Bluetooth and must be within the Bluetooth range for you to be able to see all fitness parameters
  • No GPS of its own

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#8 Willful Smart Watch for Fitness Tracking

This is a basic health monitor watch and requires downloading the ‘VeryFitPro’ app on your smartphone. Your smartphone will have to have an android version above 4.4 or iphone OS version above 8.0. The device can track your heart health, sleep patterns across deep sleep / light sleep / waking hours.

Willful Smart Watch for Fitness Tracking

Pros

  • Compatible with a range of android and iphone models and connect with your phone via Bluetooth
  • Once connected to your phone, you can receive notification for calls, SMS, calendar notifications and social networking services like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram
  • Long battery life and works for 7 – 10 days on full charge; Gets fully charged in 2 hours
  • Heart rate monitor and sleep trackers are particularly useful for the elderly to track health parameters
  • Good value for money

Cons

  • No GPS of its own; Distance and speed can be tracked by connecting to smartphone
  • Watch has to be within Bluetooth range to allow tracking through app

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#9 Apple Watch Series 3 Smart Watch

This is first model which came with the Long term Evolution (LTE) technology which is a 4G wireless communication standard and lets your watch have its own cellular connection.

Apple Watch Series 3 Smart Watch

You are right, it can operate independent of your phone. However, you have to have an Iphone to finally get this device integrated with, its just that you do not need to carry your phone everywhere.

The watch has the emergency SOS feature dedicated to elderly and women users. The watch comes in 2 screen sizes of 38 mm and 42 mm.

Pros

  • Much more affordable than the Series 5 with no significant compromise for features affecting the elderly
  • GPS enabled. Compass enabled for help with direction
  • Retina display provides great colour screen experience
  • Completely integrated with your iphone to let you do most of your activities without taking your phone out
  • Just the right size of screen for many (especially the 38 mm model), with enough space for a consolidated fitness view.
  • Connected to Apple Music – gives you access to a lot more music choices

Cons

  • Can only be integrated with Iphones. Compatibility issue with other brands of phones
  • Battery life may be lower than similar products from other companies; may require more frequent charging.

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Conclusion

A health tracking watch is welcome technology for the elderly who had to lug along large devices before, if they required to monitor their health parameters regularly. However, using these archaic devices were an activity in itself; And even then, it would not give them continuous access to these health factors.

With a lot of money going into research in this area, more accuracy in measuring health parameters and increase in the number of measurable parameters, will make the health tracking watches an effective support system for the elderly.

About Estephanie Jill

Estephanie Jill (EJBP, BSPT, PTRP) is a licensed physiotherapist. She is a home health care provider, laboratory technician for physical therapy students, medical transcriptionist, and an advocate of the physiotherapy profession. Apart from that, she loves writing. Playing to her strengths, she mainly writes around health and fitness, She has been commended for her writing in the past. Her other passions include commenting on societal changes and writing life reflective pieces. She enjoys meaningful conversations, and detaching from the digital world to do yoga and meditation. She is a self-confessed foodie who enjoys eating for the experience and then burning it all off through exercise.