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Polar Heart Rate+Garmin GPS

equinefunkequinefunk Posts: 323
edited February 2013 in Training, fitness and health

I've searched the forum for this but I'm a bit thick when it comes to GPS stuff.

I have a Garmin EDGE 605 which I normally use for tracking my rides on Garmin Connect. I wanted to analyse this along with my HRM & Cadence. I was thinking of getting an Forerunner 305 or Edge 705. But I've seen good deals on Polar HRM such as the RCX3 & some others.

My question is can I combine the HRM & Cadence Data from a Polar & combine with the GPS/GPX data from my Garmin & have them align for analysis?
I'm over 6' and have quite a large head.


  • Unlikely, as the wireless transmission technology is different (WIND for Polar and ANT+ for Garmin) and the proprietary analysis software is different for the two brands. I used Polar (CS500) until recently but switched to Garmin because of the much greater compatibility between the head unit and sensors with ANT+. It also depends on what you mean by 'align' - if what you want is all of the data on one chart then, as far as I'm aware, no.
  • DaveLDaveL Posts: 188

    There are several program's out there that will covert Garmin to Polar and visa versa, but they just do not work, or the multitude I tried anyway. Which is a shame as I've used Polar for the last 7 or 8 years and really like the Protrainer software, but I have sold my Polar and bought a Edge 800, which is a brilliant piece of kit, oh and Strava :D

  • equinefunkequinefunk Posts: 323
    edited June 2012
    Thanks, I should have been clear, I wanted to merge both files to make one activity. I don't want to use a Polar HRM to the Edge.

    I've done a lot of googling since & sounds like it's a difficult task to combine both. I didn't the Garmin HRM as I've heard that the Calorie calculations are pretty off.
    I'm over 6' and have quite a large head.
  • DaveLDaveL Posts: 188
    The answer is still no, sorry.

  • RowanMRowanM Posts: 20
    Actually, I expect you can do this reasonably easily with excel. I don't have a Garmin at the moment (thinking of getting one for my next big adventure, but unsure if it is up to the job...) but from their website you can "export a .TCX file for other fitness programs and .KML for Google Earth. From the Splits page you can export a CSV file with the details of your activity."

    One of these has to be fairly close to a GPX file, and in most cases they will have a time stamp on them. Import it into excel (it will probably be an .xml file in disguise) and also import the HRM file that Polar's training software exports and then you just have to get the times aligned. The polar file says what time it started recording, so you can easily add a time value to every reading based on the recording interval UNLESS you have it set to pause recording. If you do then I think it adds stamps somewhere saying stop and start times, but I'm not quite sure. I plan to check this over the next couple of days. If not, then you could figure out how long any pauses were based on the GPS track.

    The GPS is less likely to be recorded at a fixed time interval (it might be, but I don't know for sure and have been playing with .GPX files from my phone, which are very much not at a fixed interval) so you can use a VLOOKUP to pull the matching HRM data out for each GPX point.

    If the clocks in both devices are synchronised and there is no pausing in the recording (or there are distinct stamps telling you the duration) then you should be able to line this up exactly. With pauses it might be a few seconds out, but more accuracy will involve greater effort on your part.

    You can then save it as an XML file, and I expect you can import it back into the garmin framework to analyse if you want, but as I said I haven't tried that.

    The ideal thing would be to have a macro that does all of that for you, so all you have to do is export the two files, open excel, press a button and show it the two files, and then have it turn up complete in your training log. I might write that macro one day, but would need matching files from a polar and a garmin. In the mean time, if anyone else wants to save me the effort by doing it themselves (or has already done it) then I would love a copy!

    I'm riding the Giro d'Italia for charity in 2013. Check it out at!
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