Just like any other sport, swimming is a great workout activity and an equally great way to blow off steam. But what happens when you lose track or count of your laps? For swimmers (either professionals or amateurs), this can be really annoying and frustrating. This is why it is important to use the best swim lap counters to keep track of your laps.
In most cases, you either falter and keep going blindly or start all over again, none of which are great options. It’s just like choosing between the devil and the deep blue sea. Fortunately, lap counters will help you keep track of your laps and reps without having to juggle your memory box.
Swim lap counters do not only come in digital form, it can be in form of a bracelet, bead, counter cards or counter touch. You don’t necessarily have to use the digital form of it, there are also some swim lap counter bracelets and swim lap counter beads that you can use in water. Want to find out more? Read further!
Why Do You Need a Swim Lap Counter?
Swim lap counters are essential tools for swimmers whether professional or amateurs. Unfortunately, many swimmers do not see the importance of getting a swim lap counter. Still uncertain as to why you need this device? Here’s why:
For starters, a lot of swimmers find it difficult to keep track of laps. Ever been in this situation? You could be swimming one minute and the next, you’re trying to recall if you’ve swam 6 laps or 7 laps. If you’ve ever been in this situation, you can understand why it’s so important to get a swim lap counter.
Swim lap counters save swimmers the trouble of struggling to remember the number of laps gone. With this device, you can concentrate on your swimming without having to pause or falter. You can use the device you feel most comfortable with. Some prefer a counter they can use in water like a bead, bracelet and some prefer a swimming lap counter touch. Whichever it is, make sure you are achieving your goal.
What Is the Best Swim Lap Counter?
I have highlighted some of the best swim lap counters that are suitable for every type of swimmer.
- Best Overall: SportCount Swim Lap Counter and Timer
- Runner Up: SportCount Chrono 200 Swim Lap Counter & Timer
- Best Budget, great for Coaches: Digi 1st Tally Swim Lap Counter
- Best for Beginners: SportCount Swim Lap Counter
- Best for Manual Counting: Aqua Tally Swimming Lap Counter
- Best for Long Distance Swimming: Kiefer Swim Lap Counter
Comparison of Top 7 Best Swim Lap Counters 2020
The following comparison chart will serve as a suitable guide for choosing the best swim lap counter that will suit your needs and requirements.
|Swim Lap Counters||Weight||Battery life||Function|
|SportCount Swim Lap Counter and Timer - Best Overall|
|0.48 oz||Can be used for up to two years without replacement||Multifunctional|
|SportCount Chrono 200 Swim Lap Counter & Timer - Runner Up||0.48 oz||6-8 months.||Multifunctional|
|Digi 1st Tally Swim Lap Counter - Best Budget, great for Coaches||-||No battery required||Used to hold up the lap counter|
|SportCount Swim Lap Counter - Best for Beginners||0.48 oz||Can be used for up to three years without replacement.||Just for swimming|
|Aqua Tally Swimming Lap Counter - Best for Manual Counting||6.1 oz||No battery required||Multifunctional|
|Kiefer Swim Lap Counter - Best for Long Distance Swimming||70.4 oz||No battery required||Just for swimming|
|RISE Handle Adapter Swim Lap Counter||2.08 oz||No battery required||Multifunctional|
The Best Swim Lap Counters
To make an informed decision about the lap counters, you need a detailed description of each lap counter before making any purchase. Without further ado, here is a detailed review of the best swim lap counters.
SportCount Swim Lap Counter and Timer
(Best Overall - Editor's Choice)
Have you used the SportCount Lap Counter? If yes, then you’d definitely love this improved version of it. If you haven’t, you’d still love this new device. The SportCount Lap Counter and Timer is an improved version of the SportCount Lap Counter. This device has equal features and functionalities as the old one. However, this device is slightly different.
It not only counts the number of laps but times them as well. Thus, you can easily find out the amount of time spent on each lap. This device can also be used for other activities such as running.
- Only requires one hand to operate
- Easy to read
- Does not give room for accidental recordings of laps
- Small display screen
SportCount Chrono 200 Swim Lap Counter & Timer
Just like the previous lap counter, the SportCount Chrono 200 Lap Counter and Timer is a great tool for keeping track of laps. However, this device goes a step further by offering timing features. Its basic function is to record and keep track of laps. As such, it can record up to two hundred individual laps and has a count limit of 999 laps.
Also, it helps you to keep track of your fastest and slowest laps. So, at the end of your swimming session, you can easily find out which laps you spent the most time on and which laps consumed the least amount of time. You could also determine the average time you spend on each lap.
One amazing feature of the SportCount Chrono 200 Lap Counter and Timer is that it also helps you to record your overall swimming time. Thus, you can find out how fast you are and your overall general performance.
Just like its counterpart, this device is very lightweight. It won’t be a burden while swimming and, in most cases, you may not even notice its presence. It also requires only one hand for operation. Thus, you can easily operate it while swimming without having to falter or face distractions.
- It is very basic and simple to operate
- Quite durable
- It is lightweight and needs just one hand for operation
- Records a limited number of laps
- Its battery life is not as long as that of the basic SportCount Lap Counter
Digi 1st Tally Swim Lap Counter
(Best Budget, great for Coaches)
This counter was originally made for baseball but can also be used to count swim laps. It has a large and easy-to-read LCD display. With this counter, you can count either up or down. It can be used to count up to 9,999 and can also count down to zero. It has a loud beep confirmation which you can turn off if you want to.
It is not like other products that can be worn and used inside the pool. It has to be used outside the pool. It is light-weighted and small enough to be carried around.
- It is light-weight and can be carried around
- It can count up and down
- It has an audible beep confirmation that can be turned on and off
- Doesn’t have backlight display for dark environments
SportCount Swim Lap Counter
(Best for Beginners)
Looking for a lightweight lap counter to help keep track of your laps and reps? Then, the SportCount Lap Counter is the one for you! This device is so light that you can barely feel its presence while swimming. So, you don’t have to worry about a gigantic lap counter dragging you behind while swimming.
This particular lap counter was specifically designed to be placed on the finger. It comes with adjustable straps so even if you have the tiniest fingers possible, it will still fit. You won’t have to worry about the device sliding off.
The SportCount Lap Counter is quite simple to use. It helps to keep track of your laps and remember the exact lap you are on. As such, you don’t have to think or wonder which lap you are on. To keep track of your laps, you will have to click a button after each lap. This helps to prevent accidental recording of extra laps or miscalculation.
One advantage of this lap counter is that it comes with a one hand operation feature. That is, it can be operated with just one hand. As such, you do not have to continually pause midway to record each lap. Just keep swimming and press the button as you go. The device is equally waterproof and can be used in up to 50 metres of water.
- Very lightweight
- It is quite durable. This device can be used for up to three years without replacing its batteries
- It is very easy to read. One can read and keep track of laps even under water
- Its button feature makes it hard to accidentally record extra laps
- Only requires one hand to operate
- Can record up to 9,999 laps
- Small display
- The button requires a very firm pressure before recording any lap
- Swimmers may experience a bit of difficulty while fastening the strap
Aqua Tally Swimming Lap Counter
(Best for Manual Counting)
If you’re looking for a digital or wearable lap counter, halt! The Aqua Tally Swimming Lap Counter is not for you. However, if you prefer something manual, then you may proceed past this checkpoint.
The Aqua Tally Swimming Lap Counter is a manual device that helps you to count laps while swimming. Don’t let its manual appearance fool you. This device is just as effective as any digital or wearable lap counter! It is water resistant and is designed to look like a lane rope.
This device comes with twenty-five beads. On the string, there are four beads of the same colour and then one bead of a different colour. This pattern is repeated throughout the rest of the string, making it a total of twenty-five beads. The beads are meant to be used as a tally mark.
To use this device, move all the beads to one end of the device. As you complete each lap, move a single bead. The bead will represent one lap. At the end of your swimming session, you can then go ahead to count the number of laps completed.
- It is waterproof
- It is very effective for keeping track of laps
- Moving the beads after each lap can be tiring
- Swimmers may accidentally move more than one bead at a time and record extra laps
- It can be distracting. Swimmers will have to pause after each lap to move a bead
Kiefer Swim Lap Counter
(Best for Long Distance Swimming)
For competitions and long-distance swimming, you may need something different from the conventional wearable lap counters. The Kiefer Swim Lap Counter is here to help! This particular lap counter has twelve huge numbers which are easy to see even from a distance.
The device is made out of heavy-duty plastic. As such, you do not have to worry about it breaking or shattering if it hits a hard surface. It equally comes with sturdy hinges so the numbers won’t fall off.
The Kiefer Swim Lap Counter counts odd numbers from one to sixty-nine. At the final lap, an orange panel is displayed which could serve as a form of motivation to the swimmer.
- The numbers are huge and can be sighted even from a far distance. Thus, you can easily keep track of your laps
- It is very durable
- No batteries required. As such, you do not need to constantly replace batteries or worry about the battery dying out
- Its sturdy quality prevents it from scratches or damage
- Users will have to flip the numbers manually after each lap
- It can be difficult to operate
- Suitable for only competitions or distance swimming
RISE Handle Adapter Swim Lap Counter
The RISE handle adapter is best for keeping dry sleeves at a swim meet. It works best for holding your lap counter while you are swimming. As a swimmer, you cannot change the numbers yourself, you will need someone outside the pool to help you do that. However, you can also do it yourself if you don’t mind getting out of the pool after each lap.
The handle gives room for the pole to be attached to the lap counter. This product comes with the pole attachment only and not the pole. It is strong, sturdy and reliable. This tool is best used with swimming lap counter cards.
- Helps to keep sleeves dry at the pool
- Strong, sturdy and reliable
- It does not come with a pole
Swim Lap Counters Buying Guide
What feature do you look out for when buying a swim lap counter? Appearance? Size? If these two features are the only things you look out for when buying a lap counter, then you are probably on the wrong path.
When purchasing any lap counter for swimming, you ought to take certain things into consideration. These will help you to select long lasting devices which can be utilised properly. Here are some things to look out for when purchasing a lap counter for swimming:
How accurate is the swim lap counter? Does it provide you with accurate information about the number of laps taken? Accuracy is one of the primary things to watch out for when buying any lap counter. An inaccurate device will merely render your swimming session pointless and lead to several discrepancies. As such, you should try as much as possible to stick to accurate lap counters.
Water Resistance and Water Proof
It’s a no-brainer that lap counters have to be water resistant because they’d be in water 70% of the time. However, in addition to getting a water-resistant lap counter, it is equally important to ensure that it is waterproof as well.
Waterproof lap counters tend to work better under water than devices which are merely water resistant. In the same vein, waterproof swim lap counters can handle higher water pressure and even go deeper than other devices.
Battery Life and Durability
Imagine a situation where your lap counters batteries keep dying out on you. Or let’s assume you have to keep changing batteries every now and then. For how long will you hold on before dumping the device? Most people will likely dump it after the first three battery changes.
Dealing with a weak battery can be really frustrating. Thus, before buying any device, it is important to check out the battery life and durability. The average swim lap counter battery can last for up to six months before it requires a replacement.
Some lap counters do not need or come with batteries. For the ones that do, you need to ensure that it has a battery life of at least 6 months or one year. This will save you the stress of constant and frequent battery changing.
It is highly advisable to search for devices which have other functions apart from lap counting. Although lap counting is the primary feature to look out for, it is important to get a device that can do other things such as lap timing or stroke recording. This will save you the stress of getting a different device to time your laps or swimming sessions and record your strokes.
What is your budget? If you’re looking to buy a swim lap counter, you will need to consider your budget. Can you afford it? If you can afford it, you can then proceed to buy it. However, if the price is larger than your budget, you would need to scout for other budget-friendly options which are just as effective.
It is equally important to determine the worth of the device. Is it worth the price? This will help you to steer clear of regrets in the future.
Looking for More?
The products that have been reviewed here are some of the best you can find on the market. However, this list is not exhaustive. There are other lap counters that have more features and are of high tech than the ones listed above such as swimming watches or waterproof fitness trackers.
For a very detailed breakdown of the top waterproof fitness trackers with the best features, check out this article on my site: 19 Best Waterproof Fitness Trackers
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Swim Network Overview
So far, this article has covered the best swim lap counters for swimmers and other related questions. Hopefully, this will serve as a suitable guide for anyone who has questions regarding swim lap counters.
It is important to note that there are several other lap counters out there which have not been included in this article. This article focused on the top swim lap counters with the best reviews.
If you’re looking for something that will serve different purposes, then the Sportcount lap counter and timer is a great choice. However, if you want something manual and pocket-friendly, then the Aqua Tally Swimming Lap Counter is your best bet.
Generally, these are the best swim lap counters you can find online or in walk-in stores. You can also look up other related swimming gear that would make your swimming sessions easier and more productive.