Scores of new apps and wearable smart devices are hitting the market which are providing a new level of transparency to one of the most important things we do each day: sleep. Smartwatches like the Apple Watch are already home to apps which can help you stop snoring or rate your overall sleep health each night. Smart tech maker Garmin is the latest developer to delve into the sleep products market, offering a new update which expands their smartwatches’ ability to help you track your sleep data.

Garmin watches already have the ability to track basic sleep data like the times you fall asleep and wake up, but the new update adds a host of new features to provide an even more comprehensive look into your sleep health. Aside from sleep and wake times, Garmin smartwatches can now determine how long you spend in light, deep, or REM sleep each night.

Aside from tracking phases of the sleep cycle, the new update includes measures of heart rate variability each night. As you sleep, your body naturally tends to move around a bit depending on which phase of sleep you’re in, causing your heart rate to vary slightly throughout the night. These heart rate data, along with the sleep cycle measurements, can provide a much more overall picture of your sleep health each night and allow you to more accurately set sleep and wake times based on your body’s natural circadian rhythm.

Garmin’s new smartwatch features aren’t necessarily new or groundbreaking, but owners of these watches will surely be pleased by the expanded sleep tracking capabilities. Just make sure you don’t obsess over them: psychologists have identified a bizarre new sleep disorder caused by worrying about sleep tracker data.

The new update is free and can be downloaded through the Garmin Connect app. Supported models include the Garmin Vivoactive 3, Forerunner 645, Forerunner 935, Vivosport, Vivosmart 3, and Vivomove HR.

Brett Tingley

Brett Tingley is a writer and musician from the mountains of Western North Carolina. Contact him at [email protected]

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