7 Best Watch for Cyclocross in 2023 (Reviews and Guide)

Take a look at the Cyclocross world cup trainers and you will immediately notice that almost all of the cyclists’ train with a watch on their hands. The watch is an understandable addition for training given the extreme nature of cyclocross.

Hello there! I take part in many intense cyclocross competitions every year and I enjoy everything about the activity. When I was a newbie, I often made use of my computer to guide me through my workout sessions. However, there was never any proper position where I could mount my computer and there was also the risk of losing the device in an accident. I needed a device that could accompany me as I cycled, went for a swim, run, or surfed.

Over the years, I have tested and owned a ton of smartwatches. These watches have incorporated factors such as my blood oxygenation level, my heart rate, my recovery, and even my sleep. The watches come in handy even for activities such as mountain biking. In this article, I have outlined the most ideal smartwatches for cyclocross. This review will guide you allowing you to easily find out exactly what you need for your cyclocross activities.

Best Watch for Cyclocross – Comparison Table

Screen Size 
Battery Life 
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The Fenix 6, Multisport GPS Watch
The GPS Sports Watch from Suunto
The Garmin Forerunner from Wearable 4U
240 X 240 px
The Series 5 GPS Watch from Apple
394 x 324 px
The Garmin Venu Watch
390 x 390 px
The ID.TRI Triathlon Watch from Sigma Sport
128 x 144 px
The Ionic Watch from Fitbit
348 x 250 px

Best Watch for Cyclocross Overview

The Fenix 6, Multisport GPS Watch

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Garmin’s Fenix industry is now producing its fifth iteration. There are three versions available for this watch model that include the 6, S, and the X as well as the Standard, Pro Sapphire, and the Pro.

The Fenix 6 watch is designed with a very large screen as well as a svelte bezel. This makes the watch much thinner and feels like a less obtrusive object on your waist. The case of the watch comes with a multi-GNSS chip. This chip is able to access the Galileo, GPS, and GLONASS satellite networks as well as the three-axis electronic compass and the barometric altimeter. s

On the bottom side of the watch, there is the optical heart sensor from Garmin Elevate. There is also an inbuilt Pulse Oximetry (Pulse Ox) that functions well determining the rate of your pulse as well as the blood oxygenation.

This smartwatch also comes with a ton of great features such as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and ANT + connections. The watch is also made with support for power meters. These are the most ideal for guiding you during your workout sessions. You get to make use of the turn-by-turn navigation tool that has been preloaded on Strava live segments, maps, and crash detection. It is compatible with the Connect IQ store


  • The watch has a very elegant design
  • This watch makes use of the smartwatch ecosystem
  • The watch makes use of the Fitbit app


  • The watch is not designed with any external sensors

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The GPS Sports Watch from Suunto

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The Suunto industry took note of the feature that raises the most complaints and modified it until it was not an issue anymore. 80 sport profiles are available on this watch and you can track the power of this watch on each of the profiles. This will allow you to know the amount of time the battery will last even before starting your exercise routine.

The screen size is large at 320 x 320 px. There is a GPS antenna that has been integrated into the bezel. This is great as the watch will not come with a big bump on the strap of the watch. Users can also make use of the QZZS, Galileo, and GPS GLONASS satellite networks. This allows the watch to have some communication with your phone.

There is also an inbuilt heart rate sensor that works well with or without a barometric altimeter. When the watch is in power-saving mode, users can still make use of the inbuilt compass, gyroscopes, and accelerometers. Many users have complained that the watch is not compatible with any third-party apps. Additionally, the watch does not come with great features such as music control, or live segments from Strava.


  • When the watch is on power save mode the battery life is at 120 hours
  • Before users embark on any activity, they are provided with a charge breakdown


  • You cannot sync your workout to this device

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The Garmin Forerunner from Wearable 4U

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This is a very high-end watch. The bezel is made of plastic and there are many great features such as contactless payments and onboard music.

The watch is also designed with great Wi-Fi connectivity and Bluetooth ANT. It is compatible with all kinds of sensors as well as power meters. Users can easily access several satellite location networks. There is also the altitude and heat acclimation feature as well as the brand new ClimbPro. Additional features include the Pulse Ox data and the Elevate optical HR sensor. It is also one of the most affordable smartwatches from Fenix.


  • Users can make use of the ClimbPro feature
  • Users can make use of the PulseOx feature
  • There are full-color maps


  • The watch is very expensive
  • The accuracy of the GPS is not the best

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The Series 5 GPS Watch from Apple

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The watches from Apple are very popular and this model has all the great features that all of the most ideal smartwatches have. The watch comes with an inbuilt GPS and an optical HR that will provide you with six hours of activity. With this watch, you can track your activities in two different ways. You can use the Workout app or any other third-party app such as Strava.

With this workout app you are provided with very basic information on your training and the OS update can share activities automatically to Strava. The market, however, is filled with Ea number of third-party apps that provide you with additional functionality from apps such as RideWithGPS and even Strava, as well as apps that provide you with turn-by-turn directions and give you the chance to pull data from your power meter.

Users should also note that this watch could retrieve a lot of information from your phone’s GPS even though the phone is designed with its own inbuilt chip.


  • The watch screen is very sharp
  • This watch comes with a number of different apps
  • Users can make use of the iPhone integration feature


  • It does not have the best battery life
  • You must own an iPhone

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The Garmin Venu Watch

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This watch is designed with a great OLED screen and it has many inbuilt features to enhance your fitness. Just like many other smartwatches, users get to make use of the magnetic compass, the barometric altimeter, the integrated GPS, the as well as the PulseOx. However, when making use of native apps, all your activities will not be restricted by the self-imposed walls of Apple.

This watch functions well beyond the generic data fields. The power meter support is quite limited. This watch is designed with an inbuilt structured workout feature or custom sessions. Users can sync this from Garmin Connect and the good news is that your phone battery will not be drained as you try and steal the GPS.

In addition, this watch comes with all the amazing features and apps that you would find on a smartphone such as Spotify, Amazon Music support, and contactless payments. There are also normal health features such as the blood oxygen level.


  • The watch’s screen is excellent
  • The features of the watch are more specific to sports


  • This watch is very expensive

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The ID.TRI Triathlon Watch from Sigma Sport

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The ID.TRI watch is a great model from the Sigma industry and the watch is specifically manufactured for those who professionally take part in triathlons. That means it is perfect for all your cycling adventures. This watch comes with an optical heart rate, a GPS, a three-axis compass and a barometric altimeter. Users will be able to benefit from the directions that come with a turn-by-turn feature as well as different routes presented by komoot. There are some inbuilt modes to enable your structured workout routines and you are able to put in any preferred reminders such as your mealtime or your ideal time to drink a protein shake.

This watch makes use of Bluetooth connectivity as well as ANT. It works well with different sensors that include your mobile and power meters. If the watch detects a crash, a quick alert is sent to your emergency contacts.

The watch is also very affordable which is an ideal factor for such an amazing watch that comes with great features.


  • The watch functions are amazing
  • The watch has a power meter support
  • The ID.TRI watch is very affordable


  • It does not have a large screen
  • Users may take some time to get used to the UX screen.

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The Ionic Watch from Fitbit

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The Ionic watch is a great exercise companion and it does not release the impression that you are a bike nerd in your everyday life.

This is the only watch that has an in-built satellite location chip. Users get access to GLOMASS and GPS satellite networks ensuring that they are very accurate. In GPS mode the battery life is 10 hours. The Bluetooth feature enables a connection to your phone and immediately sends different activities to the Fitbit app. You can set these activities to automatically hit Strava.

The sleep tracking feature from Fitbit is one of the best and the watch also comes with many smartwatch features such as access to music streaming platforms and notifications. Users can also receive an email from the watch when the device needs to be charged.


  • The watch has a very elegant and classy design
  • The watch makes use of the Fitbit app
  • The watch makes use of the smartwatch ecosystem


  • The watch does not come with any external sensors

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Factors to Think About When Purchasing the Best Watch for Cyclocross 

Different Modes of Cycling 

Smartwatches are often designed with a number of sports modes. These range from golf to cycling. Several watches will come with different riding profiles such as gravel, road, as well as indoor spinning or cycling activities. This allows you to select data screens that are relative to your way of riding, but it also allows you to choose the sensors that your watch should find.

There are a number of smartwatches that are designed with different sports modes. These modes give you the chance to begin in a certain app and go on with your exercise routine in yet another app.

The Sensor Support and Connectivity

If you are looking for a watch that can track your bike ride, it is important to ensure that the watch comes with a GPS chip. Some high-end watches can easily get a signal from the Galileo, BieDou, and GLONASS satellite networks. The GPS network is the most ideal, however, it is your choice if you want to enable all the other features.

The Bluetooth feature is the best connection protocol. It can communicate with different sensors like your phone, power meters and also turbo trainers.

The Heart Rate 

The heart rate is one of the most ideal features. All wrist-based sensors for your heart rate are designed with directions showing you how the watch should be put on to ensure that you get the most accurate reading. An optical sensor is designed to ensure that solid contact is maintained with the user’s skin.

Accelerometers and Altimeters

If you are interested in having the data of the altitude around you then you should look for a watch that is designed with an inbuilt altimeter. A barometric altimeter provides you with air pressure data. There are a number of watches that will send you a signal or a warning as soon as the watch detects a drop in air pressure, indicating that a storm could be on its way.

There are affordable GPS watches that come with gyroscopes and accelerometers that are inbuilt. These features are used to improve the satellite coverage that could be spotty. They also work well when the watch is on power-saving mode, providing satellite reporting, however, less frequently.

The Battery Life 

When getting track of your location, you can be guaranteed that your smartwatch will use a lot of your battery power. That is why it is important to take note of the GPS battery figure of your watch. It is also vital that you select a watch that comes with battery saver features to minimize GPS reporting. Such kinds of watches should be able to depend on inbuilt sensors to provide you with all the necessary details.

Integration Features for Your Smartphone 

All smartwatches can automatically link to your phone using Bluetooth. This allows you to find out if someone is calling or who has sent an email. Some watches will enable music control, Live segments from Strava, and even contactless pay functions.


If you enjoy cyclocross activities, owning a smartwatch with tracking apps or a watch that is designed with in-built cycling features will make your cycling activity so much more enjoyable.

Having easy access to your heart rate and your GPS on your wrist is so amazing, and this is not a convenience that any mounted biking computer can provide. This article has listed the most ideal watches that are designed with several useful details and features all in a very small package.

I hope that this review will act as an amazing guide as you browse through the market for your best choice.

Frequently Asked Questions 

Is buying a smartwatch worth it?

A smartwatch is as necessary as your smartphone, especially if you enjoy embarking on cycling activities. It is not a device that you must wear each and every day, however, it comes in handy when cycling.

Do you need a watch for Strava? 

When using Strava, you will need to use three different devices. This includes a computer, a smartphone, and a tracker for your fitness. On your smartphone, you will have to have installed the free Strava app.

Can a smartwatch cause cancer? 

Some people claim that wearable technical devices may pose a cancer risk. However, many experts and scientists have released several studies that prove that your fitness tracker cannot give anybody cancer.

Can you sleep with your smartwatch? 

This will allow your smartwatch to charge while simply resting on your wrist. By simply being in the same room as the watch charger, your watch is guaranteed to charge. Even as you sleep with the watch there is an array of sensors that function on your sleep, while it charges throughout the night.