5 Tips and Tricks for Getting the Most Out of Your Fitbit Alta HR

Fitbit Alta HR

Congratulations! You’ve clearly got good taste—the Fitbit Alta HR is a pretty awesome device. In fact, this sleek stunner is the world’s slimmest wristband with continuous heart rate tracking. But you probably already knew that.

Hopefully you’ve had time to set up your tracker and sync it to your smartphone or computer. Maybe you’ve even spent a few days getting to know your device and exploring your Fitbit app dashboard. If so, then now’s the perfect time to dig into the information below because there are a few things—ok, 5 things—that all new Fitbit Alta HR owners need to know.

Alta HR Advice You Won’t Want to Miss

Accessorize! Alta HR has more interchangeable accessory bands—including designer collections—than any other Fitbit tracker. Best of all, if you’ve upgraded from Fitbit Alta, you can still use any accessories you previously bought: Alta bands also work with Alta HR trackers. Just be aware that heart rate tracking may not work with loose-fitting accessories; wear Alta HR classic or leather accessory bands to optimize heart rate tracking.

Fitbit Alta HR interchangeable wristbands

Wear it right. The accuracy of your heart rate readings is affected by where you put your tracker, so make sure you’re following these best practices. First, let your Fitbit app know which wrist you’re wearing it on—your non-dominate hand is preferred since the extra movement from your wrist can impact your charts. To confirm your settings, go to your account, tap Alta HR and then select the either Left or Right for both “Handedness” and “Wrist”.

Next, make sure the tracker is in the right place on your wrist. In general your tracker should lay flat about a finger’s width below your wrist bone (away from your hand). During exercise, wear it a bit farther up your forearm—about three fingers widths from your wrist bone where an increase in blood flow can improve the heart rate signal.

Lastly, make sure the tracker is snug but not constricting (especially during exercise), so it doesn’t restrict blood flow.

Keep heart rate sensors on. Unless your tracker battery is low and you won’t be able to charge it anytime soon, consider leaving your heart rate settings on “Auto”. (To find this option, tap the Account icon in the top right corner of your dashboard, then Alta HR, and then Heart Rate.) Here’s why: Having continuous heart rate data bolsters the abilities and accuracy of other features. For instance, all-day heart rate tracking powers better measuring of total calories burned, optimizes exercise by helping you pinpoint heart rate zones, and takes classic sleep tracking to a whole new level by powering Sleep Stages.

Customize your display. You can add, delete, and rearrange the stats that appear on your tracker right from the Fitbit app. Just tap the Account icon, tap the Alta HR tile, and then tap “Customize Display.” Select the stats that you want to see on your device (the battery indicator is super helpful; when you see low battery it means you have about a day of usage left) and then hold your finger on each tile’s three grey lines to drag them into your preferred order.

Fitbit Alta HR customize display

Relax when you recharge. Having trouble charging your tracker? Plug the cable into a USB port on your computer (or other low-energy device), then clip the other end of the cable to your tracker, lining the pins up with the three metal circles. When the tracker vibrates and a battery icon appears on your tracker’s display, the connection is secure. During charging, you can tap the display to check the battery level. The battery icon will appear solid when your tracker is fully charged. Still having issues? See Why isn’t my battery charging?

Next: 7 Ways to Win Any Step Challenge—Plus Two Tactics That Won’t Work

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