Imagine the scene:
It’s 3 p.m. at work and you’re crashing hard. You reach for your fifth cup of coffee for the day. As you do, you begin to wonder–for the umpteenth time–if there’s some way you could not feel so tired all the time.
Is it possible to be bad at sleep?
Well, here’s some good news and some bad news. The bad news is yes, it is possible to be bad at sleep. And if you’re one of the people who are, you are in good company.
The good news, though, is that there are ways to improve your sleep! One of the first steps to making sure you’re getting the best rest possible is to look at an analysis of how you sleep.
Sleep trackers, which come in wearable, under-mattress, and bedside varieties, can give you insights about factors which may be affecting your sleep. Read on to find the best sleep tracker for you and take the first step towards restful sleep and better waking hours.
It turns out FitBits aren’t just for fitness tracking. They also make a great sleep tracker too.
Since the batteries on the FitBit Ionic can last for up to four days, you won’t have to worry about charging this wearable device as often as other smartwatches.
The FitBit Ionic uses your heart rate to track what level of sleep you’re in. It also has a tri-wavelength sensor that will soon be able to diagnose sleep apnea and other such sleeping disorders.
Because the FitBit monitors your actions constantly, it learns over time. That way, it can generate more personalized insights and suggestions for better sleep.
You may know the Polar M430 as a running watch. But it’s also possibly the best sleep tracker for serious athletes.
Like the FitBit, this device must be worn while you sleep. The Polar M430 uses the accelerometer to track your actual sleep time and interruptions. It delivers insightful reports on continuous sleep periods.
It has been rated very highly for accuracy, and it allows you to rate your sleep for a more subjective evaluation. If you’re in training, the watch will track your training activity and compare that with your sleep quality for an overall view of your day.
S+ by ResMed
The S+ is the new and improved version of the SleepScore Max. It monitors your sleep by using sonar to track your breathing and movements, making it the best sleep tracker for you if you prefer a non-invasive device.
The major improvement in the product comes in the app features. The S+ app doesn’t just factor in light levels, sound levels, temperature, and other external factors into your sleep coaching. It also asks you to report how much caffeine you’ve had that day, how stressed you’ve been feeling, and other sleep-related factors.
Then it provides advice based on those insights to help you get a good night’s rest.
Nokia Steel HR
If you’re looking at all these fancy gadgets and thinking you just want something a little simpler, the Nokia Steel may be the best sleep tracker for you.
Designed to look like a normal analog watch, the Steel shows you the time and a 0-100% dial for your daily activity. All other information is gathered and presented in the smartphone app.
The sleep tracking feature of this watch is automatic, so you won’t have to worry about forgetting to set it when you go to bed. It will monitor your sleep cycles, time awake, and sleep duration and provide reports, including the length of time it took you to fall asleep.
Best of all, the battery on this watch lasts eight months, a great feature if you tend to be forgetful.
Emfit QS HRV Sleep Monitor
If you’re an athlete looking for a tool that will let you optimize your sleep to improve your training, the Emfit QS HRV Sleep Monitor is the best sleep tracker for you.
The QS stands for Quantified Sleep, and the HRV for Heart Rate Variability, one of the best emerging sleep evaluation tools. The Emfit QS HRV hides under your mattress and provides information about how well your body has recovered from a training session.
One of the unique features of the Emfit QS HRV is that it takes a measurement of your body when you go to bed and another when you wake up. This provides information about how your body recovered during the night.
Research has suggested that the higher your HRV is during the night, the better your body has recovered from strain. Using the score this device gives you each morning, you can decide whether it’s a good day to push yourself or if you need extra recovery time.
The Sleepspace Reston, like the Emfit sleep monitor, is a non-wearable device. It slides under your bedsheet to monitor your heart rate, movement, and other environmental factors in the room.
When you go to sleep, you press “Start” on the device module that clips onto your sheet, and it begins collecting data. It will keep track of how often you get up, your sleep cycles, and factors like room temperature and humidity.
This device is best used by solo sleepers, as readings can be compromised if your partner rolls over onto the detector strip. When you wake up in the morning, the smartphone app will have a plethora of personalized insights, data points, and recommendations for better sleep.
If you’re a person who likes charts, numbers, and hard data, you may find this to be the best sleep tracker.
Sense with Voice
The Sense sleep tracker consists of a cleverly-named “sleeping pill” which sits on your bedside table and a small monitor that clips onto your pillow.
Although the first generation included hand wave signals, the new version includes voice command capabilities. You can control the alarm get feedback on your sleep, and check on the environment in your room just by talking to the tracker.
If you’re looking to improve your sleeping environment, this may be the best sleep tracker for you. Not only does the Sense track room temperature and light and sound levels, it also looks at carbon dioxide levels, volatile organic compound levels, and barometric pressure.
It then factors all of these into an overall sleep environment rating, allowing you to tailor your room to your ideal sleep needs.
Much like the FitBit, Polar, and Nokia trackers, the Jawbone UP3 is a wearable tracker that allows you to monitor your daily health as well as acting as a sleep tracker.
As a sleep tracker, though, the Jawbone offers interesting insights into your sleep patterns. In addition to the usual heart rate monitoring, the Jawbone keeps track of your respiration rate, body temperature, and galvanic skin response.
The smartphone app will provide you tips throughout the day on how to improve your health and fitness, as well as offering sleep coaching. You can set a vibrating alarm to go off in the morning if you like, and when you wake up, you will be able to see details about your light, deep, and REM sleep cycles.
If you’re looking for a wearable fitness tracker and sleep monitor that provides some additional insights, this may be the best sleep tracker for you.
Misfit Shine 2
Although the Misfit Shine 2 is a bit larger in diameter than its predecessor, at 8 mm thick, it is still one of the smallest Misfit wearables.
The Shine 2 does not track heart rate, among the most common sleep analysis tools, and it does not have a screen. But it does sync to Apple Health as well as a number of other health tracking apps.
The Shine 2 works much the same way as most wearable fitness trackers, integrating with smartphone apps to provide advice on how to improve sleep, as well as overall health. The sleep tracker particularly provides insights into your light, deep, and REM cycle sleep.
It also has an alarm feature and will begin tracking your sleep automatically so you don’t have to worry about activating it.
Picking the Best Sleep Tracker
Getting a good night’s rest is crucial to having a happy, healthy, productive day.
As you’ll have noted any time you missed even a few hours’ sleep, not getting enough rest affects every other part of your life. Having the best sleep tracker can make sure you’re living your best, healthiest life.
If you’d like to learn more about how sleep can affect your health, which mattresses can help you get the best night’s rest, and what techniques you can use to improve your sleep, visit Sleepify. We’re dedicated to being the ultimate sleep resource and helping you get your best night’s rest.