Fitness Trackers: Good But Not Perfect

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Fitness trackers can help track one’s health and some have grown to be fashion statements. The fitness tracker craze is very strong and seems to be getting stronger. It seems to be a sign that people as Americans are hopefully getting into a good space even as we focus on our physical fitness. The trackers, at onetime, were quite heavy and unattractive.

Well, that is addressed. Designers have created aesthetically impressive models that talk to our phones and computer systems ever. The costs have risen for some but basic models remain affordable for most. Some trackers have become fashion statements. They are sleek and pair well with jewelry for those fitness-conscious fashionistas.

I individually have become a member of the craze as I wanted to find out if walking up and down my hallways at the job was providing me with the 10, each day which is arranged as my goal 000 steps. For me, I get only 6,000 steps via my working life. That leaves me to attempt to find the time to get those other 4,000 steps in. I find that my most productive time, when I could get my 10,000 steps in, the weekend is on.

These will be the times I clean my house and wash clothes. I have pondered if the trackers were accurate as far as the counting of steps because some days I just know I’ve strolled more than it says. I question if the fact I am transporting an IPad and papers around are decreasing my arm movement and thus are lowering my signed-up steps. In a recent model of the Journal of Personalized Medicine, seven models of wrist-band monitoring devices were examined.

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  • Tracks steps, rest and active time

They viewed the Apple Watch, Basis Peak, Fitbit Surge, Microsoft Band, MIO Alpha 2, Pulse on and Samsung Gear S2. That is the next and important area. Many people now want healthcare providers to include their data from their fitness trackers in their medical records and to use this data in determining plans because of their healthcare.

The question we as healthcare providers got to know is how accurate is these details? There can be several variables. Each one of these devices has its proprietary software that they use. The analysts wanted to find out if the heart rates were monitored properly, among other parameters. They were considered by them accurate if these were within a 5-percent selection of their standard. They also wanted to know if the calculations on the amount of calories burned were accurate.

They found out that the heart-rate numbers are very good on every one of the devices tested. The data was not nearly as good for the quantities that monitoring costs of energy or calories burned. Again, the various software may have made this task of comparing the devices impossible. If you have a real interest in this, browse the May edition of the Journal of Personalized Medicine online and see where your unique device failed. The take-home message is that although these details are valuable indeed, we need to maybe step and make sure these details are accurate back again. I need to make sure that information is indeed accurate in order to make life decisions about my patient’s health.