Activity trackers, do they really work? A fitness pros opinion.


There’s been an entire industry created out of the introduction of watches and wristbands claiming to essentially tell you everything from calories burned, workout time, sleep patterns, heart rates resting and active, and the ever so cliché step counter and floors climbed. Yet with this massive industry, are you really being provided with accurate information? You may be surprised.

I for one am a believer in the old school tried and true methods of understanding how the body burns energy aka calories, and the hard numbers associated with how many calories x lbs of lean body mass burns performing xyz activity. In my opinion activity trackers are one of the greatest fads the fitness industry has ever seen. Yes they can be relatively helpful tools for individuals that are new in their health and fitness journey, yet the effectiveness of them become less and less the healthier and more active you become.

Smart activity trackers especially the ones that monitor heart rate are just frankly hilarious to me. Why I say this you ask? Just look at the data for yourself! Here’s a test!

Place your activity tracker on as you normally would and wait for it to find your heart rate. Now take you pulse at your neck and count for 6 second how many pulses you feel and multiply that by 10. This is you physical heart rate. DO the numbers match? If they do great! Now perform 30 jumping jacks and repeat the same test as before! You may notice your heart rate on you monitor reads lower than your actual physical pulse count. This is because the so call heart rate monitoring activity trackers loose their accuracy any time the arms are at level with or above the heart! This completely defeats the purposes and frankly deems them completely useless, especially in the gym!

Here’s the final nail in the coffin to the most coveted trackers made by Apple and Fitbit, the cream of the crop that can sell for upwards of $300. Perform the exact same test with the jumping jacks as before then do it and then remove the activity tracker off your wrist and see how long it shows a pulse count til it realizes it’s no longer measuring anything! You’ll be amazed at the level of smoke and mirrors in the digital formulas and how the data you see, is greatly a “guestimate” rather than actual occurrence.

Tech world, you can keep you digital trash…… I’ll stick to what’s worked since the rise of body building and monitor real data!




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