Smartwatches might have started out as a great way to track simple metrics like daily steps and heart rate. However, manufacturers like Fitbit, Samsung, Apple, and Garmin have continued to add increasingly helpful features in recent years.
Now, the latter is adding a highly requested tool to its lineup of smartwatches. About 18 months after adding period tracking to its platform, Garmin will give users the ability to track their pregnancy.
This includes things like baby movements, blood glucose levels, and pregnancy-related symptoms. Although it isn’t essential, it is a great way for expectant mothers to stay in tune with their bodies throughout the pregnancy process. It’s also a great way to avoid the frustrations that other smartwatches can cause during pregnancy.
Anyone who wears a smartwatch knows that it is notorious for reminding you to get moving. Whether it’s an Apple Watch nudging you to close your rings to a Fitbit reminding you to meet your hourly step goal, these interactions are typically helpful. However, most pregnant women are told to modify or decrease their typical workout routine—especially later in the pregnancy.
A smartwatch that is constantly sending reminders for a workout that can’t (or shouldn’t) be done leads to plenty of frustration. Garmin now wants to help expecting mothers safely stay fit and healthy during their pregnancy.
For one, users can pause updates on their training status. Since this typically utilizes recent exercise data to determine your fitness level, being able to pause it during pregnancy is a key addition. The latest feature does more than just modify fitness tracking, however.
Users can log pregnancy-related symptoms like fatigue, backaches, and nausea. They can also get updates on the progress towards their due date.
Moreover, users can set new heart rate alerts since pregnant women tend to have a higher-than-normal heart rate—despite it being healthy during pregnancy. Hydration goals can be modified in a similar fashion. Users can even set reminders to drink water or perform daily Kegel exercises.
Throughout the pregnancy, the Garmin app provides weekly updates. These include information about what symptoms to expect, how to modify your diet, and recommended exercises specific to that time frame.
For those who want to take pregnancy tracking to a new extreme, Garmin is rolling out a new app that can be used to monitor and track contractions during labor.
How to Use Garmin’s New Pregnancy Tracking Features
Garmin’s new pregnancy tracking features are a long time in the making. Fortunately, they’ll be rolling out to the majority of users. To activate them, you’ll need to have a compatible Garmin device.
This includes smartwatches from the Forerunner series, the Fenix 5 and 6 series, the Marq series, Venu series, and Vivoactive series. A handful of Star Wars and Marvel-branded watches are also supported, according to Garmin’s official list.
To activate the pregnancy tracking features, open the Garmin Connect app on your smartphone. Then, head to User Settings > Women’s Health > Cycle Type > Pregnancy. From there, you can turn on the new feature.
On your smartwatch, look for the Pregnancy Tracking Connect IQ app. This gives users access to pregnancy alerts and reminders on their wrist without having to open the Connect smartphone app.