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Fitness & Wellness

Are Fitness Trackers Worth Having

By September 11, 2018May 14th, 2019No Comments

There are a number of different fitness trackers available to people who live in Sterling, VA. Some are simple apps for cell phones, while others are more intricate devices. Depending on the tracker and your situation, each one has value. If you aren’t sure what a fitness tracker is, it’s a device you wear that sends a message to your computer or cell phone app recording information, like heart rate, calories burned or steps taken.

You have to use them to get results.

If fitness trackers only played a victory song and shot out money like a slot machine when you hit your goal—the big one—maybe they’d get a warmer reception. But they don’t. They count your steps, record your heartbeat and most of the time, remain on your dresser. Studies show that if you purchase a fitness tracker, you’ll use it six months or less if you’re like a third of the people who buy them and forget you own them after six months if you’re like half the people that own them.

If you can tune out your doctor, your spouse and the results on the scales, there’s no reason a tracker should get your attention.

Yep, it’s true, people tend to ignore the trackers, even when they were excited to own them. A study published in The Lancet, under “Diabetes & Endocrinology” showed that after using a clip-on tracker for a year, there was no difference, good or bad in the test groups health or fitness. Part of the study group was even offered financial incentives to do well, but failed miserably when it came to improving. When that incentive was removed, however, their results went downhill. Another study showed that people who wore fitness trackers actually lost eight pounds more than the control group who didn’t.

It’s not all bad news.

Not all trackers are meant just to get you to the gym or keep you running and moving. Some have medical uses. People with coronary problems will find some trackers beneficial. They offer tools that can provide valuable information and keep the owner safer. Some have heart rate monitors or track blood pressure. Others monitor sleep. If you have a medical condition, they can be great tools to help you stay healthier and may even be lifesaving.

  • While the average person may not fully appreciate the benefits of a fitness tracker, people dedicated to fitness or athletes will find the tools beneficial.
  • Until tracking your health and activity becomes more of a game, trackers haven’t caught the hearts of the public yet.
  • Are trackers beneficial. Anything that helps you get healthy is beneficial. However, they really don’t make you accountable unless someone—another human—sees and reviews the results.
  • Just like gym memberships, trackers are only good if you use them.

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