As GPS watches have become smaller and more technologically advanced – and as runners, triathletes, and others have made their likes and dislikes known – GPS manufacturers have wisely started producing watches with certain athletes in mind, realizing a one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t work.

In this section, we’ll discuss the features that make a GPS watch excel at certain activities. We also feel that experience level should be considered, so we’ve broken down several activities by skill, knowing that less seasoned athletes won’t benefit from the advanced features found in high-end watches.

There is also a fair amount of overlap between watches. While it’s true no watch is ideal for every activity, many GPS watches are very good at more than one. At the end of this section, we’ve listed the GPS watches available today that have features we feel are best for each activity.

Keep in mind, there is a bit of subjectivity in categorizing watches in this manner. In the end, all GPS watches can do the basics: track pace/speed, distance, and time. Sometimes, that’s all you need.