The wearable technology phenomenon took off in 2015 and now it is in full swing with Fitbit, Apple, Garmin and Samsung taking up the majority of the marketplace and for those who do not wear a technology most mobile phones will allow you to download apps to track your activity. but what do these activity trackers do? The devices can often tell the time, count the steps, calories, distance and even monitors sleep.
They generally allow you to then monitor your performance against set daily fitness goals based on the average amount of steps you take. They also give you a reminder when you have been in active for too long. Smart watches in most cases do everything an activity tracker can do plus more. They generally come with an in built heart rate monitor and GPS and they also link with your phone, some brands even allowing you to receive calls, e-mails and messages.
Do they work?
If you were to wear three different watches for a day they would all give you slightly different readings however, if you ask me this is beside the point. What these devices are great for is the fact that they keep your fitness in front of your mind. Every time you look at your wrist or your phone you are bombarded with your latest achievements, statistics and progression. You can even compare these against your friends with the same brands. Many people find that they start to take the stairs instead of the escalators, park further away from work or even go for a walk around the block so that they can reach their daily goal which is usually around 10,000 steps.
Why 10,000 steps?
in the 1960’s Japanese researcher Dr Yoshiro Hatano recommended 10,000 will help improve the health of people. Further research today shows walking this amount can improve health and reduce the risk of disease such as heart disease, stroke, obesity and type II diabetes.
Taking 10,000 steps a day is recommended by the World Health Organisation. For the vast majority of people 10,000 steps is a realistic goal that is very achievable. it is important to note that for some people it takes time to build into this level. But, on the flip side some people may do more activity then this and at higher intensities to reach their goals. It is crucial to consider diet in conjunction with physical activity when it comes to both fitness goals and been healthy. If you need more guidance and advice on exercise speak to your physiotherapist who will happily guide you.
“The journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step”