WHOOP Strap Review: Fitness Tracker or Fancy Watch

WHOOP Strap Review: Fitness Tracker or Fancy Watch

The world’s most powerful fitness membership. 

This is the WHOOP Strap’s slogan, a wildly popular fitness wearable that straps onto the user’s wrist in place of a watch. Promoted by athletes and influencers alike, this strap tracks daily activity giving users insights into how well their body is recovering and the amount of stress it’s under. 

To help decide if the WHOOP Strap is truly the world’s most powerful fitness membership this blog will look at how it works, the scores it provides, and share our experiences with it.

What is the WHOOP?

The WHOOP is a watch-like fitness tracker (Learn more about fitness trackers here). This device collects data from the user’s body throughout the day and displays this information on its associated app. It provides daily analytics with the goal of giving the user insight into their health and data to help them make better decisions. What separates the WHOOP from other fitness wearables is its sleek profile, monthly subscription, and proprietary health scores.

The WHOOP’s Health Scores

The WHOOP provides users with three different health scores: strain, recovery, and sleep.

WHOOP’s strain score looks at how the body is handling stress. Throughout the day the strap tracks the user’s heart rate to monitor the stress on the cardiovascular system. It then presents a score between 0-21, rating how much the cardiovascular system was strained that day. The goal of this score is to give the user data on their activity to help them balance stress and rest. 

The recovery score looks at how well the body is responding to different stresses. To calculate this score, WHOOP looks at the user’s heart rate variability (HRV), resting heart rate (RHR), and sleep. The recovery score is presented in a percentage out of 100. Depending on the score, WHOOP says that recovery is either in the green, yellow, or red zone and advises users to act in accordance. 

The third score the WHOOP tracks is sleep. WHOOP uses RHR, total time asleep, and the amount of time spent in each sleep cycle to calculate this score. After every night of sleep, WHOOP presents the user with a sleep score out of 100 with a breakdown into quality, efficiency, and consistency. Learn how to get better sleep here. To understand what these scores represent it important to understand how the WHOOP works.

How the WHOOP Works

WHOOP works by tracking the users’ resting heart rate, heart rate variability, and activity. These metrics are the foundation for the strain, recovery, and sleep scores. 

WHOOP gathers this data through a PPG-heart rate sensor, gyroscope, and accelerometer. These sensors sit inside the strap and on top of the user’s wrist. The position of the strap lets the WHOOP track your heart rate and movement. Once the data is gathered, WHOOP runs it through its own set of formulas to calculate its three scores. 

Our Experiences with WHOOP

The OPEX Fitness team has first hand experience wearing the WHOOP in the strap configuration. Our favorite part of the strap is the recovery score. There are many factors that influence recovery and this score helps create awareness around how these factors affect our training. 

The strap itself is a sleek design and can easily be worn during workouts. It is worth noting that we rotate the strap to the inside of our wrist for kettlebell movements. Overall we find that the data WHOOP provides is useful for creating awareness around the balance of stress and rest. 

The Best Uses for WHOOP

The WHOOP Strap promises to be the world’s most powerful health membership. This is a lofty claim, but the data it provides can be a useful tool to create awareness around the balance of stress and rest.

For the fitness enthusiast, the WHOOP can be a great way to help you self-assess your workload. But for the newer trainee or the consumer that just wants to get fit, their money would be better spent elsewhere. We would recommend finding a health coach, like the one found in OPEX Gyms, that can help you achieve your goals. 

To achieve optimal health you must learn how to balance stress and rest. The majority of fitness consumers struggle to reach their health and fitness goals because they do not understand this concept. But as the fitness industry pushes high-intensity workouts year after year this is no easy task. 

This creates a need for guidance. Fitness coaches that can help consumers achieve their goals and balance their stress and rest. Sound intriguing? Sign up for our free coaching course and taste for yourself what a career as a fitness coach is like.  

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