Whoop wearable, is it worth it?

What are peoples thoughts on Whoop? is it just marketing, I’ve seen a lot of mixed reviews on it.

Absolutely marketing. The whole premise is giving you better data to make better decisions. But here’s the thing…it doesn’t record good data. It’s a poor heart rate monitor and a poor sleep tracker. You can do a strength workout and it will think you were sitting on the couch which means it thinks you’re fresh when you’re not. You can get a great night of sleep but it will lose the data and now your trends are off for a week, which means the recommendations are bad for a week or more. Customer service is poor and even if they weren’t, there’s nothing they can do to fix your issues when data doesn’t get recorded. Even the people who claim to love theirs will admit that there are days when it says they’re cooked but they feel fresh and vice versa. They have a money back policy, but they also tell you that the data gets more accurate with time and that you should ignore inaccuracies early on, which sets up a pattern of thinking, “oh, the data is off, but that’s ok”. If it wasn’t a subscription model, I might be ok with that, but when you’ve spent all that money and are locked into a subscription before you realize it’s inaccurate and not getting any better, then you’re screwed.

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I have used both Whoop and Oura…mostly for professional evaluation purposes (we manufacture consumer health care devices). MY overall take is that I prefer the software of Whoop (did get a few valuable insights) but the convenience of wearing the Oura.

But overall, I think the data is pretty suspect…I was sick for about a week in October (thought for sure I had COVID). Could barely get out of bed and my active calorie burn for 4 days straight was only 100 kcal. I was basically a lump on the couch.

Each day, Oura said I was primed and ready to roll. LOL…I couldn’t take a piss without exhausting myself.

Other times it says I should be resting, but I would have great workouts and feel fantstic.

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I’d just stick to a Garmin watch which also does sleep tracking. That and Polar which I used previously mostly agreed with how I actually felt.

Of course that raises the question of how much is it worth it at all, and the answer is not very much. Frankly the only really insightful thing I gleaned is how much a few glasses of wine deteriorated my sleep quality. Also showing how disproportionately long hard tempo rides affect me - much more severe than doing a shorter interval session. Otherwise, everything is about as I’d expect.

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Agreed. You’d get a ton more information and an actionable set of information from a good book like, “Why We Sleep” for less than one month of a wearable subscription.

Check out the review of both Whoop and Oura on dcrainmaker.com. The conclusion was that the previous version of Whoop had one of the worst heart rate measurements that you could buy. The other problem was that the metrics are backed only on heart rate.

Thanks, there was a lot of hype by people, but after reading, I will definitely pass on this.

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If you already have a smartwatch, you may want to consider recording your waking heart rate variability (HRV). My understanding is that there’s some evidence that it’s an indicator of recovery/freshness. I don’t know how good the evidence is. It may be one of the parameters that Whoop relies on. If you already have a smartwatch, you likely can already get it for free, although on my Apple Watch, you have to manually record it if you want to use it (for some software related reasons, plus I think it’s waking HRV that’s what counts and your sleep app may not automatically record HRV on waking. The 3rd party sleep app I have definitely does not, and you have to use the Breathe app to give it that info.)

The Whoop strap, IME, was very position dependent and most people tended to wear it wrong. They wore it like a watch, which was too low. It got much better reading if you pushed it up 2-3’ from there. Once I did that, my HR readings improved (especially during activity).

My biggest gripes with the Whoop were 1) it was obvious you were wearing something, and 2) after a couple of weeks of wear, I tended to get a bit of tendinitis on my forearm. A day or two w/o the strap and I would be good to go.

The Oura ring resolved both those issues for me…but I don’t think the analysis is better than what Whoop provided.

Thanks for the feedback, I will stick with a garmin

I actually felt it did a decent job of collecting HR (I probably wouldn’t use it as my primary HR monitor for workouts but at a high level it got high HR’s during activity and low during rest) and it would do a decent job of automatically recognizing if I was MTBing, road riding, running, lifting, etc. But my gripe was that it basically told me how I already felt I was feeling. So I got a 20% recovery score and I already knew I was tired or vise versa. The other was that due to work, life, etc. my schedule was pretty set and I wasn’t able to adjust my whole schedule based on what the whoop told me to do that morning.

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Hated the whoop strap… don’t generally like smart watches as a biotracker device because I typically charge them at night while I sleep and lose out on sleep data. Oura ring for me has been awesome. It disappears on my finger and I never notice wearing it, it charges in the amount of time I’m in the shower so I never really need to think about charging it, battery life is enough to last for nearly a week so if I go camping or a weekend trip I don’t need to think about bringing a charger.

In terms of accuracy, I’ve had the exact opposite experience from Henri and found it to be remarkably accurate. I don’t tend to look to the app as a predictor before workouts but almost without exception, if I’ve felt like shit on the bike or felt weak in the gym and go back and look at the app it’ll have recommended a rest day for me. In the year or so I spent with the gen 2 ring and the month or so I’ve had the gen 3, I’d say I’ve had maybe a half dozen days where it was suggesting rest and I felt great or felt off and it suggested a high level of readiness.

My lone gripe with Oura is the sizing. My ring fits perfectly but I bought one as a gift and none of the sizes available worked out, she was only able to find a size that securely fit without being too tight on her thumb which Oura doesn’t recommend as a good place to wear it…

I didn’t say anything about the Oura ring’s accuracy…AFAIK, the data is very accurate (but I have not done a deep dive on it). I questioned whether the evaluation and assessments were reliable / good indicators.

:thinking:

But overall, I think the data is pretty suspect…I was sick for about a week in October (thought for sure I had COVID). Could barely get out of bed and my active calorie burn for 4 days straight was only 100 kcal. I was basically a lump on the couch.

Each day, Oura said I was primed and ready to roll. LOL…I couldn’t take a piss without exhausting myself.

Other times it says I should be resting, but I would have great workouts and feel fantstic.

FWIW, my sleep has improved considerably since starting with Whoop! a couple of years ago. While the data might not be accurate, I feel it does a good enough job of letting me know how long I have slept. Of course, this could probably be achieved by any decent sleep tracker. The bottom line on sleep is: most of us overestimate how much sleep we are actually getting. I was consistently getting about 1 hour of actual sleeping than I had thought. This has benefited my recovery a lot, which is worth the money to me.

I still rely on my heart rate strap when I actually care about it (like when training).

So that highlights exactly what I just reiterated…I’m not certain about their evaluations. I was sick and it said I was primed for peak performance. Other times, it said I should rest and I had great days on the bike.

Thanks for confirming what I said…I guess?

:joy:

:roll_eyes:

Not even sure you’re clear on what you’re saying at this point but ok… I guess? :man_shrugging:

If it was telling you that you were in peak physical condition when you couldn’t get out of bed, I would characterize that as inaccurate. Which is, I believe what the other guy was saying. He just paraphrased your words, and almost always sounds like a jerk when he writes things :grin:.

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Like I said, I have no reason to believe the data was inaccurate…but I wasn’t checking it against other devices, either. I was questioning how the data was interpreted / analyzed, not the data itself.

From what I have seen on the data when I have cross-referenced it with HR data from my strap during activities, it seems to have some broad-stroke alignment (avg HR, similar graphs, etc.).

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