December Digest

December 5, 2017

December 2017 Healthy Perspectives Digest

Inspire To Move: Fitness; To Track or Not To Track?

Technology has taken center stage with fitness tracking devices. You can wear a watch, band or even download an APP to track or share just about any workout. So, as technology and tools get “smarter” why aren’t people getting healthier?

While technology can be an instrumental tool for health and well-being, it is not the total solution. Let’s say that again. Technology is a tool, not the solution.

Wearable Fitness Devices: Wearables have grown in popularity from basic pedometers to Fitbits, Jawbones and the iWatch. A survey from Juniper Research says that almost 60 million fitness trackers will be in use by 2018.

Do wearable fitness devices work? They work to track physical activity. The real question is, do the devices motivate one to exercise? Last year results of a study by the IDEA trial were published, showing that after two years, people in the study without access to wearable technology lost an average of 13 pounds. Those with the wearable tech lost an average of 7.7 pounds. In this trial, those who wore the technology were no more physically active or more fit than the other group!

Do wearable fitness devices hurt? There is no harm. Wearable devices provide a benefit. They can be fun, informative and offer helpful reminders, but they are not “the solution”.

The key to ongoing motivation for physical activity is the human touch behind the technology. Make exercise fun by doing the things you love. Create a habit by going the same time every day, reinforcing your habit with realistic goals and by celebrating your accomplishments.

Learn about fitness trackers and more in our Healthy Perspectives Newsletter (follow the link below).