|Posted on October 11, 2016 at 6:30 AM|
'Fitness Tracking Devices Don't Improve Health'
This was the headline in a national newspaper recently. The story was borne out of the results of a scientific study which monitored 800 people using a Fitbit device over a year. The research found that while users exercised more at first, there was 'no evidence' the gadget promoted weight loss, improved cardiovascular fitness or blood pressure.' The study also found that 90 per cent of participants had stopped using the device before the end of the year. They said the novelty wore off.
My Response? No surprise there then!
Since such gadgets became popular I have been sceptical of their real use in long term improved health and fitness, so I feel a little smug about this research.
I am of the opinion Fitbit, and the like, are little more than a distraction from the task in hand - exercise itself. I believe they appeal to a certain sort of person (and that person is often not a dedicated exerciser) - geeks, people with more money than sense, and members of a younger generation which is concerned with style over substance. Yes, they might look cool on your wrist or attached to your belt, but if you want to know how hard you're working, all you've got to do is take your pulse or ask yourself this simple question: am I working hard or not? Your body will soon give you the answer.
And yes, I know they can do a zillion things like count your steps, moniter your calories, sleep etc but, ironically, the one thing they can't do for you is the exercise.
In addition, information overload is the bane of most people's existence nowadays without even more of it to analyse about your activity levels. I think life's a little short for obsessing about such things - and this comes from me, a pesonal trainer, who is commited to health, fitness and good old fashioned exercise for both my clients and myself.
My advice? Jump up and down on your fitness tracker 100 times - you'll be killing two birds with one stone - destroying the gadget AND getting an aerobic workout into the bargain!