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Friday 28 April 2023

FitStrap Review: An Expensive Lesson if you Don't Look After Your Straps!

If you regularly wear running watches, then you'll know that the first thing to break is the strap. And once they start to go, that’s it, no amount of tape or glue will hold them. Trust me … I've tried both and it's an expensive lesson if you lose the watch!

I was well aware that the strap on my trusty Garmin ForeRunner 945 was 3 years old and starting to look – and smell! - a bit funky, so when FitStrap offered to send me 2 straps for the Garmin for free in return for an  review, I jumped at the chance. (As usual my reviews are completely unbiased – I say what I think!)

So first things first:

How easy are the straps to fit?
They're virtually identical to the Garmin original straps and as such they're just as fiddly. FitStrap helpfully send 2 fitting tools per strap and maybe there's a trick to it, but trying to balance one tool which turning the other to release the old strap and fit the new is quite fiddly. I got there in the end, but there were free swearwords and looking on the floor for the tiniest screws in the world is part of the job. So … not easy, but this is how Garmin designed them but having TWO tools made the job a bit easier.

What are the strap colours like?
I really liked having the option of bright, vibrant colours! I'd previously had the choice between black or blue and it was nice to have a change and have something to match my mood! The colours are clear and bright and happy! Good motivation colours … and additional bonus is that they make the watch easy to find when you've left it charging in a dark place!  This time, I chose a bright postbox red and a plum purple colour… a bright colour for happy moods and a colour that hides the oil, river water and sweat!! Safe to say that pastel colours re not a good choice for me, thanks!

How do the straps feel?
They feel just like my original Garmin strap. Laid side by side I couldn’t tell the difference. The only minor difference I spotted was there is no indented triangle on the buckle. The straps have the same stripes and grooves and patterns as the originals. 

What's the length like?
Good length and plenty of settings to choose from, from child size to Andre-The-Giant size!

Band loops - included? 
Yes, 2 band loops included so you can use both or remove one as required. 

Delivery time? 
No long wait – the straps arrived in good time!

Other Things I Liked:
Both packs were clearly labelled with the watch models. Very handy so if I bought a few straps for different watches or models there would be no confusion and no swearing!

Don't do what I did and put one of the straps on backwards when you get distracted by the cat … you'll feel a right wally!! Top tip: make sure the rough side is facing up. And the band loops go on the buckle strap! I also managed to lose one of the screws by pinging it off of the table – those things are TINY! Top tip: feel is better than sight! Found it within 10 seconds … somehow!

It was also nice to have different straps to match my mood, what I’m wearing or even a special strap for a special event for instance the red strap matched my IronMan Barcelona kit! You could match the colours to the race kits which is nice if you have everything coordinated! 

I use both straps (on my Garmin Forerunner 935 and Forerunner 945) on a daily basis and in swim, bike rides and runs and they've both been comfy and reliable. I've found that sometimes straps can get a bit stinky but I've had no problems with these and they both seem robust which is very important to me, having dropped watches when the clasps have undone themselves. I also really like the 2 loops as standard on the straps as this provides and extra layer of security … these are expensive watches and you need to have reliable straps.

I'd definitely buy these again. They've already proven their worth and reliability and for the price they're an absolute bargain. Plus I'm a sucker for pretty coloured kit and I love being able to change the straps colours to match my mood! 

Take a look at them on the FitstrapsUK page: 

Or drop me a message for any questions as I'm currently using one of the straps as I type!

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