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Revolutionizing Swimming with FORM Smart Swim 2 Goggles

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Revolutionizing Swimming with FORM Smart Swim 2 Goggles

In April 2024, Canadian company FORM unveiled its second-generation smart swimming goggles, the FORM Smart Swim 2. Building upon the success of its predecessor, these innovative goggles aim to elevate the swimming experience for amateurs and triathletes alike with cutting-edge features and a sleek design.

The FORM Smart Swim 2 goggles maintain the comfort and fit of the original model while boasting a 15% reduction in overall size. The lightweight design sits comfortably on the face, thanks to five interchangeable nose bridges that ensure a perfect fit. The leak-free silicone eye seals and mirrored lenses with an anti-fog coating contribute to a hassle-free swimming experience.

At the heart of these goggles is FORM's signature heads-up display (HUD), which provides real-time data in one of the lenses. The bright green letters and numbers float just ahead of the swimmer, offering critical information such as time, pace, and now, heart rate. This data is always visible yet never obtrusive, a significant improvement over traditional methods like glancing at a smartwatch, which often requires stopping mid-swim.

When you purchase the FORM goggles, you can experience a variety of core features such as real-time heart rate, measured via FORM’s optical heart rate sensor, 9 real-time swim metrics such as pace, distance, stroke rate, and split times, and the FORM app for detailed post swim analysis.  Additionally, all workouts can automatically sync with Trainingpeaks, Strava, Apple Health and TriDot.

In open water, FORM goggles pair to Apple Watch and Garmin devices to provide GPS distance and pace in the FORM display.

For those interested in a more advanced experience, FORM offers a set of Premium features which are accessible via a subscription fee after an initial two-month free trial for all new customers. Premium is 84 GBP a year, or 13 GBP a month, cancel anytime. 

FORM Premium enables full access to HeadCoach - FORM’s personalized in-goggle visual coaching coupled with comprehensive in-app analysis and educational content. 

Additional FORM Premium features include:

  • FORM Score: Get rated based on your swimming efficiency
  • SwimStraight: First ever in-goggle digital compass
  • 1500+ workouts with instructions in your goggles
  • 45+ training plans
  • Ability to import workouts from TrainingPeaks directly to the FORM app.
  • FORM Workout builder to create your own workouts

The integration of a built-in optical heart rate sensor is a game-changer. Located on the inside of the onboard sensor housing, it takes readings from the swimmer's temple. While a chest strap might offer slightly more precise data, the optical sensor's readings are comparable to those from high-end smartwatches like the COROS Vertix 2.

Another groundbreaking feature is SwimStraight, a digital compass designed to help swimmers maintain a straight course in open water. By providing AR guidance to the most direct route between buoys or turning points, SwimStraight can save energy and time in competitive settings. However, some swimmers may find that the narrow field of vision, a trade-off for the AR display and sensor housing, is less than ideal for open-water swimming where peripheral vision is crucial. SwimStraight is also race approved by World Triathlon, USAT, PTO and Supertri.

The FORM Smart Swim 2 shines during structured workouts. The AR display makes it easy to follow intervals, rest periods, and even indicates when to use accessories like pull buoys or paddles. The accompanying app can translate workouts from third-party platforms like TrainingPeaks into interval-based sessions, saving time and effort.

HeadCoach is FORM’s proprietary digital coaching technology. HeadCoach provides real-time coaching via the FORM Smart Swim Goggles’ augmented reality display.

During and after a swim, HeadCoach provides swimmers with technique feedback using two types of metrics: FORM Score and HeadCoach Skills. FORM Score is a measurement of overall swim efficiency ranging from 0 to 100, defined by pace and stroke length.

HeadCoach Skills encompasses five key areas that will help swimmers identify where to focus on improving their efficiency: head roll, head pitch, set pacing, interval pacing, and breathing time-to-neutral. It also assigns swimmers a rating from 0 to 100 for each of the HeadCoach Skills, an assessment that highlights where improvement is needed and demonstrates when progress is being made.

Priced at £229, the FORM Smart Swim 2 is undeniably a premium product, but it delivers unprecedented value and insight compared to a standard goggle. Additionally, the Smart Swim 2 is a true replacement for a GPS watch when in the pool.

FORM’s ability to deliver accurate, real-time data in a viewable format is a game changer. For those who don't need the latest features, the original model (now called Smart Swim 1) remains available at a reduced price of £159.

In conclusion, the FORM Smart Swim 2 goggles are a mandatory accessory for swimmers and triathletes seeking data-driven improvement without a real-life coach. The accurate, built-in heart rate monitor, open-water compass assistance, and heads-up display makes them a superior alternative to swimming smartwatches.

Even without the Premium subscription (2 month free trial with goggle purchase), the potential for technique improvement and performance optimization should make them a worthy investment for serious swimmers and triathletes.

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