CS300 Polar Heart Rate Monitor

, July 5, 2011

Polar CS300Convinced by Polar’s reputation as a leading manufacturer of sports instruments, I invested in a CS300 during the 2006 summer season to track my cycling training. Five years later, I now swear by the product, never forgetting to take it out on mountain and road rides. Amazingly, it took three years and hundreds of hours of usage before my CS300 battery ran out, and Polar just three days to find and mail a fresh replacement. As an example of how simple tech can enhance and simplify the training process, my experiences with the CS300 are entirely positive.

A key feature of the CS300 is its wide display screen which allows for easy reading even when you’re tearing down hairpins or climbing out of the saddle. To further aid readability, Polar provide a solid handlebar mount which allows you to fasten the wristwatch into a convenient position on the bike. Unfastening the watch from the mount is simple if you’re thinking of using the CS300 as a multisports product.

As well as recording standard readouts of time, speed, average speed, max speed and distance, the CS300 has a couple of extra functions. A nifty dual alarm system allows you to set times to remind you to drink or eat based on your desired period lengths. And so you don’t wreck your average speed readout, the CS300 freezes readings when you come to a stand still at a set of traffic lights, carrying on from your first point of rest once you get moving again.

Other functions include heart rate, calories burnt and Polar Ownzone – a system that sets visual or audio alarms to alert you of your training intensity. As well as setting your own heart rate limits manually, you can also use a built-in age gauge to make sure you’re keeping in line with your body clock. The WearLink transmitter chest strap that takes inputs heart rate data is very comfortable, adjustable and even machine washable.  All training summaries are stored on the watch under filed dates that can all be uploaded to your PC.

While the CS300 might not include some of the more technical features of other instruments, it is a great cycling and running watch for those who want to keep a simple record of their training. As an upgrade you can also buy the CS Cadence Sensor to measure your pedaling rate on the bike.

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