Wednesday, September 15, 2010

GPS for Windsurfing

February 23, 2013 Update:  I bought the Garmin 310XT last year and have used it over 100 times and love it.  I highly recommend it.

Here is an example of what the 310XT uploads to the cloud using a wireless dongle in a USB port.

Note, in my excitement to sail the first time in 2013, I forgot to put on my heart rate monitor strap so there is no heart rate data.  Here is a session from last year with HR data.

September 8, 2011 update:  Despite being advertised as "rugged waterproof design" the Forerunner 301 is only moderately water resistant.  If you don't keep it in a dry bag, it will eventually leak and fail.  If you tell Garmin if failed while windsurfing, they won't honor the 1-year warranty!  I told them advertise these for winsurfing and they advertise them for "triathletes" which implies swimmers and they volunteered to repair or replace it for me for $34.   I will probably use a dry bag and eventually upgrade to the Waterproof 310XT that they recommend for swimmers and windsurfers.

It is really nice to know how fast I am going while sailing by glancing at my wrist and I really liked knowing how many miles I sailed and top speed reached.

Original Article:
I used my Garmin Forerunner 301 GPS Personal Training Device for the first time yesterday windsurfing and loved it!
It was so easy to set up and use.

It is water proof and you wear it on your wrist like a watch.  I set up the custom view to show my current speed in big type so I can easily see it with a glance while sailing.  I found I was also able to see the smaller text I set for max speed and total distance.

This is the bike handlebar mount I bought so I can use it for biking.

At the end of my first "workout" windsurfing for 1hr and 35 minutes on a 6.5 sail in flood tide at Coyote pt yesterday the heart monitor said I burned 1718 calories in 22.85 miles with pk speed of 24.4MPH.   I was not able to get upwind enough to let loose on a downwind run to try and break 30MPH.

I am not sure how the heart monitor does calories since I have not entered weight yet. Avg HR was 135 BPM - easy training session.  After only a single use where I have not had time to read the instructions yet, I am very pleased and recommend it to all.


  1. From a facebook discussion on this new GPS

    Kipps wrote ‎...if you *really* want to know your speed data, run the GPS data thru a software program like GPSActionReplay or GPSResults. my experience is that that speed displays (especially the max speed readings) tend to be erroneous in most cases (they read high!).

    Kirk wrote: How much does it change Kipps? The kit came with a CD for the software that displays the data on a time line (speed, heart rate, etc.) but I have not had time to install it or try it out... Actually trying to do some work today! LOL

    Kipps wrote:
    "it varies. the GPS units try to calculate your speed on the fly based on the updates of position data; when you lose a satellite or there are altitude conflicts (common on the water) you get errors in the position and hence, the speed, so you can get really weird spikes (like, 60mph) or just one-second peaks that are 3-5 mph more than the speed in the sectors before and after. the software i mentioned looks only at the recorded trackpoints and calculates the speed from there; but it also allows you to clean up the spikes and then have good speed readings (like max 2-seconds, 10-second average, 100 meters, etc.) which are more meaningful than a possible erroneous 1-second read :)"

  2. This GPS started to leak water into the plug and eventually the unit stopped working. I dried it out for a week and it came back on but would not charge.

    I submitted a warranty claim to Garmin so we'll see how well they honor their 1-year warranty.


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