What you need to know to choose the right wearable health monitor for you.
The “smart” health monitoring devices nowadays have far exceeded the age of pedometers.
Modern wearable devices have sensors that not only monitor the movement and functions of the body but can also store and analyze data.
You can track the calories you burn, the calories you consume, your heart rate during exercise and afterward, even how much you sleep.
As a personal trainer, your health monitor can motivate you to achieve your goals and set new ones.
However, it is important to note that not all wearable health monitoring devices are equally good. Several studies have gone into the process of comparing the accuracy of each brand’s products from laboratory conditions to actual daily activity.
Their ability to measure steps, distance, physical activity, energy consumption, and sleep duration may vary, but so do the results of various studies.
For example, one study found that steps and sleep duration could be more accurately recorded than total daily energy consumption.
Such deviations can be especially helpful when you want to keep track of either your progress or just the number of steps you take each day and bring you closer to the 10,000 goals!
So before you get into the process of buying a wearable health monitor, it is useful to take some steps.
- Before investing money in such a device, it is good to be sure that you will actually use it.
- Predict your budget. Depending on its functions, a good wearable device can cost as little as $100.
- Decide what kind of device you want. It may be a bracelet or watch for your wrist or a “button” device that will be less visible.
- Select a device that meets the physical activity requirements you want to track. From walking and jogging to swimming and cycling, the capabilities and functions of such devices vary.
- Read the reviews for the app that came with the device. This is the means by which you will interpret the data provided by your wearable device and track your progress. Questions like “Does it work autonomously or on a smartphone and if the latter applies, is it compatible with my own smartphone?” You should answer them before you go shopping.
Your mobile may already have a health app, such as iPhone Health. If you have never opened it, you may be surprised to find that it has stored a lot of information about your activities and can be used as a basis for future health monitoring.