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Revolutionizing Swimming with FORM Smart Swim 2 Goggles

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Revolutionizing Swimming with FORM Smart Swim 2 Goggles

On April 2nd 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 swim 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 comfortable, 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 yellow 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 requires you to stop mid-swim to view your data.

When you purchase the FORM goggles, you can experience a variety of core features and now swim seeing real-time heart rate, measured via FORM’s optical heart rate sensor, 9 additional real-time swim metrics including pace, distance, stroke rate, stroke count, and split times can be viewed in the goggle's display, while the FORM app has all your detailed post swim analysis for review. Additionally, all swim workouts can automatically sync to Training Peaks, Strava, Apple Health and TriDot.

In open water, FORM goggles can track and display core open water data, or be paired with 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. Access to Premium features is 84 GBP a year (best value), or 13 GBP a month (most flexible), 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 for open water navigational assistance
  • 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 on the FORM Smart Swim 2 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 is often viewed as the gold standard when tracking heart rate, FORM's optical sensor readings ar with 3 beats accuracy of ECG compared to smartwatches (7 beats accuracy).

Another groundbreaking new FORM feature is SwimStraight™, an onboard digital compass available on Smart Swim 1 and 2, designed to help swimmers maintain a straight course in open water. By providing your digital bearings when in open water swimmers can now swim to the most direct route between buoys or turning points, SwimStraight™ saves time and energy in competitive settings. However, some swimmers may find that the narrow field of vision, a trade-off for the augmented reality (AR) display and sensor housing, is less than ideal for open-water swimming where peripheral vision is crucial. A big plus though is that SwimStraight™ is also race-approved by World Triathlon, USAT, PTO and supertri organisations.

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 FORM 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’ 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 undoubtedly delivers unprecedented value and insight compared to a standard pair of swimming goggles. 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, and are approved by British Triathlon.

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

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