Have you been using a wearable device to track your health status? Do you know there is a preference to where you should be wearing your fitness tracker? Did you think that you were really burning 3000 calories per day, even if most of the time you were just seating around your desk in the office. No! Right? Some of these questions have been on my mind for quite a time now and I recently got answer for few of them.
Even though, fitness trackers will someday be foreclosed by smartwatches, smart clothes or say smart everything-else. But for now they are still your best and most affordable option to track your daily activities may it be steps taken, calories burned, or how much distance you have walked over a day. You would have thought that all the wearable fitness bands must be same with little over no eye-opening difference among them. There might be none perfectly accurate fitness tracker available in the market, but that should not discourage you to not wear one for yourself. They are made to look simple and motivate you to get moving a little more than usual. So, if you might be asking that why you should not stop wearing these fitness bands, I think we might have some input to share with you.
Here’s how some of the popular health tracker ranks based on the error rating for calorie counts:
- BodyMedia FIT: 9.3 percent
- Fitbit Zip: 10.1 percent
- Fitbit One: 10.4 percent
- Jawbone Up: 12.2 percent
- ActiGraph: 12.6 percent
- Directlife: 12.8 percent
- Nike FuelBand: 13 percent
- Basis Band: 23.5 percent
Out of eight products listed above you will find that about 12-15 percent error should be expected according to the research study published in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise. The result clearly indicated that BodyMedia FIT armband as well as the Fitbit Zip and Fitibit bands will give you promising counts of calories close to 10% percent error findings. And if a product to be 100 percent accurate, you will probably not be satisfied with any activity monitors available in the market.
Though, only calorie count is not the issue here, probably most of the fitness trackers like Fibit One, Jawbone Up or Nike FuelBand maybe counting your daily steps with some nominal error by its nature of use. Did you know that if a person is a right handed and he is wearing the fitness band on right arm itself, since it will be an active hand, the steps counts or how many minutes your body was active will be increased compared to if a person is wearing it on a non-active hand. The results will vary as these wearable tech tracks your motion and not exactly know if you’re wearing it on your active hand.
The fitness wearable manufacturers also recommend some few tips that can make the most accurate measurement out of their products. Below, we have mentioned a quote from one such popular manufacturer, named FitBit, showing how you can make the most accurate health data out of your fitness tracker/band.
You can wear the Fitbit One comfortably in or on your pocket or on a bra. The silicone clip will keep it secure. If you wear your tracker on your waist, we recommend clipping it on your pocket facing inward for maximum security. Use the sleep wristband to track your sleep when you go to bed. Note that the wristband is intended for sleep use only; if you wear it during the day to track your steps, your One will be less accurate than usual. – FitBit
After, using most of the fitness bands available in market over quite a long time, we have experienced that even if you follow the tips given by the manufacturers to get accurate data. We noticed that it will count the steps even when your hands are moving while you are working on your desk, or just waving it, as it is a issue with GOQii and even the FitBit range of trackers. But there is a simple solution that we came up with, after actively experimenting it by wearing on different places – active hands, non-active hands, as necklace, head band, strapping it on belt. And the best option we came up with is to keep it in your pocket, as it will allow accelerometer to work its magic only when you actually move.
So, if you are still wondering that what is the point of wearing this tech if it is not accurate? Well the point we are focusing is that fitness bands are not accurate, but they will help improve your health by providing you close-enough data that you would be able to interpret according to your needs. And another point to note is that you should try to keep your fitness trackers in your pocket rather than wearing it on a wrist. we have been convinced by our experience of using the fitness bands over a period of time.