April 17, 2024
Oura Ring Horizon sitting upright on a wood railing.
Joe Maring / Digital Developments

Ever since I joined Digital Developments practically two years in the past, I’ve been tremendously jealous listening to my colleague, Andy Boxall, rave and rave about how a lot he loves the Oura Ring. By some means or one other, conversations in our Microsoft Groups conferences usually flip into Andy telling me — as soon as once more — simply how good the Oura Ring is. That feeling was compounded when Christine Romero-Chan joined our crew and did the identical factor. And there I used to be, Oura Ring-less, having to take their phrase for the way wonderful the sensible ring was.

So, I made a decision to do one thing about it. I acquired an Oura Ring for myself and have been sporting it (nearly) every day since September — hoping to fall in love with it the identical approach Andy and Christine have.

Sadly, that’s not what occurred.

What I like in regards to the Oura Ring

Someone holding an iPhone with the Oura app running on it.
Joe Maring / Digital Developments

Earlier than we go any additional, I need to make one factor very clear: There’s so much I actually like in regards to the Oura Ring — love, even.

Do not Miss:

I’ve worn a lot of health trackers through the years, and due to that, I’ve additionally used a lot of fitness-tracking apps. A few of them are good, some are unhealthy, and others are downright horrible. The Oura app is among the finest I’ve ever examined.

The Oura app strikes an exquisite stability of providing you lots of well being information whereas explaining what all of it means in easy phrases. Once I get up every day after monitoring my sleep with the Oura Ring, I open the app to see my sleep rating and a well-explained abstract of what it means. The opposite day, for instance, the Oura app advised me I “acquired sufficient restorative deep sleep,” with a reminder that “deep sleep helps your physique and thoughts get well and reenergize.” Beneath that was a preview of my sleep phases, and with only one faucet, I might see full breakdowns for my sleep effectivity, restfulness, timing, and different stats.

Oura does a equally good job with the “readiness” rating it offers you every day. Based mostly in your sleep from the night time earlier than night time and your exercise the day past, you get a 0 to 100 rating estimating how prepared your physique is for the day forward. After that night time of sleep I simply talked about, Oura advised me I had an 86 readiness rating and that — if I felt good — this could be a superb day to try to problem myself.

Screenshots of sleep tracking data from the Oura app.
Digital Developments

If you happen to go digging by way of the Oura app, you’ll find statistics like your energy burned, steps, strolling distance, and so on. However I’ve discovered the app’s give attention to sleep high quality and readiness to be far more practical than making an attempt to hit an arbitrary step depend every day.

Oura’s not the one firm to strive an method like this, however it’s the high quality of the Oura Ring’s monitoring that’s saved it on my finger for therefore lengthy. The sleep information it collects is usually a lot tougher on me than that of the Fitbit Cost 6 or Apple Watch Extremely 2, and it additionally traces up far more precisely with how I really really feel. And the written summaries for every rating, which might simply come off as generic and never useful, usually really feel like they had been written simply for me — and, as such, are one thing I stay up for studying every day.

And, after all, there’s the ring itself. I’ve the Horizon type of the Oura Ring within the rose gold coloration, and I believe it seems to be glorious. It’s a bit thicker than my regular marriage ceremony band, however past that, it seems to be extra like a bit of knickknack relatively than one other gadget strapped to my physique.

A really distinctive (however essential) drawback

Someone wearing a rose gold Oura Ring.
Joe Maring / Digital Developments

If I just like the Oura Ring a lot, what offers with the headline of this text and the way in which I opened it? For a scarcity of higher phrases, it’s not you, Oura Ring — it’s me. Extra particularly, it’s my fingers.

I put on the Oura Ring on my ring finger on my nondominant hand. I wished it to double as my marriage ceremony band when sporting it, primarily as a result of I didn’t need two rings on a single hand or to put on a hoop on my dominant hand. I attempted each approaches after I obtained my Oura Ring sizing equipment, and I simply couldn’t get behind both one. So, I went for a dimension that matches my nondominant ring finger.

The Oura Ring suits snugly on that finger, which is necessary if you need correct sleep and exercise readings. The issue, nonetheless, is my bony knuckles. To get the Oura Ring on and off that finger, I’ve to run it underneath the sink to get it moist. This takes simply a few seconds, and initially, I didn’t suppose it’d be an issue.

Reader, I used to be improper.

An Oura Ring Horizon, in rose gold, on someone's ring finger.
Joe Maring / Digital Developments

I severely underestimated simply how usually I take the Oura Ring off all through the day. It’s very chilly proper now in Michigan, which suggests my palms are dry on a regular basis. I like placing lotion on a number of occasions all through the day, and every time, I’ve to take the ring off. The identical goes for after I’m utilizing dumbbells on the gymnasium — except I need to scratch the hell out of the Oura Ring. I additionally take it off after I bathe, after I’m cooking, and after I must cost it each few days. These are lots of cases the place I’ve to undergo my sink ritual to take the ring on and off, and my knuckle isn’t keen on it.

I get that that is an especially private difficulty that solely applies to myself, however it’s additionally one which I can’t overlook. I would like my health tracker to be one thing I don’t should suppose an excessive amount of about. Because of my bizarre finger choice for rings and my oddly sized knuckles, this has been a relentless level of friction.

Nice for some well being information, however not all

An example of a strength training workout displayed in the Oura app.
Joe Maring / Digital Developments

However it’s not simply my fingers which have made the Oura Ring a clumsy health tracker. As implausible as it’s for sleep monitoring and telling me my physique’s readiness, it leaves so much to be desired in relation to exercise monitoring.

The Oura Ring can observe my runs, however it doesn’t provide any info within the app about my operating tempo, coronary heart charge zones, or different extra detailed stats. It’s additionally not a good selection for weightlifting, which I’ve been doing much more of this 12 months. You possibly can technically put on the Oura Ring whereas weightlifting, however it doesn’t really feel comfy in any respect having the appropriate pushing in opposition to a dumbbell or squat bar. Meaning I’ve to take the Oura Ring off anytime I raise weights — triggering my sophisticated course of to take away it.

Not solely that, however it means I miss out on information I care about. I can put on my Apple Watch to trace my weightlifting and have the information from Apple Well being imported to the Oura app, however the stats it provides are bare-bones at finest. I can see the period of the exercise and my lively energy burned … and that’s it. I would like the Oura app to be my one-stop vacation spot for all of my well being information, however due to the way in which I wish to train, I can’t.

The Oura Ring simply isn’t for me

The Oura Ring Horizon resting on a green succulent plant.
Joe Maring / Digital Developments

This isn’t how I assumed this text would go. Once I obtained my Oura Ring, I absolutely anticipated to write down one thing about the way it had change into my new favourite well being wearable and the way I couldn’t wait to maintain sporting it for the foreseeable future. As issues stand proper now, I believe I’m going to place my regular marriage ceremony band again on my finger and finish my time with the Oura Ring.

However that’s simply me. General, I believe the Oura Ring is an excellent piece of tech. When you’ve got better-shaped fingers and train in another way than I do, I believe it’s among the best health trackers you should purchase right this moment. It’s irritating that it doesn’t match into my life the way in which I wished it to, however that’s additionally the great thing about wearable tech in late 2023 — the choices are just about limitless. I’m higher suited by one thing just like the Garmin Forerunner 265. The Oura Ring would be the excellent alternative for you. Your pal might imagine the Google Pixel Watch 2 is the right health tracker.

I’m glad I lastly acquired to make use of the Oura Ring, and I hope Andy and Christine maintain having a good time with theirs. I’m additionally desirous to see what Oura does sooner or later, however — at the least for now — I’m placing the Oura Ring again on my nightstand and calling it a day.

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