Fitness Trackers

Fitness Trackers – worth the money?

Marion ForemanYou must have noticed that there are loads of different ‘wearables’ out there. Gadgets to help you get fit and stay fit. They can monitor your activity, exercise, food, weight and sleep. As the Fitbit marketing says

Every moment matters … fitness is the sum of your life.

I have a simple pedometer which monitors how many steps I take. I’m aiming at 10,000 a day. Most days it encourages me to keep moving, but today I’m not wearing it. How crooked is that? I know I’m not going to do enough steps so I won’t even bother trying!

The big question around these gadgets is do they incentivise you and positively reinforce, or do they make you feel like a loser for not doing enough? The Guardian tells me that 25 million of these bits of kit will be sold this year. So, will 25 million people grow fitter and be saved from disease or will there be 25 million expensive gizmos losing their battery in a drawer somewhere?

A study showed that for the first month after acquiring one of these gadgets, the wearers increased their activity. But we don’t know yet for certain what happens after that.

My thoughts on these gadgets? Well, if you are already motivated to exercise and live a healthy life then these gadgets are great for affirming you and encouraging you to keep going. If you fall into the ‘just can’t be bothered’ category, then you probably wouldn’t get one anyway and certainly wouldn’t care if you’d reached your 10,000 steps for the day.

Walkers' FeetThese gadgets are probably most beneficial for those of us who are just starting to think it’s time to do something about our fitness and our weight. They really do help you set goals and keep on track.

So with that in mind, I’m just off for a walk. Where did I put my tracker?