Fitness Trackers have had a surprising rise in sales in the last period. More and more people are buying this kind of device with the hopes that they are going to be healthier and skinnier. Despite this, a new study shows that in the long run fitness trackers don’t bring the expected results.
This study was the longest and biggest one on this topic. The other researches were made by the companies who produced this type of devices and they were made just to demonstrate, in a short period of time, just how good they are. This new study showed that at first you can register an improvement just by walking more, but in time there will be almost no difference.
This research was made by following 800 adults for a year. These people were randomly assigned to four groups. The participants were aged between 21 and 65 and had office jobs.
The first group received a FitBit fitness tracker and if they walked 50,000 steps in a week they received $22. The second group received the same FitBit and they had to donate the money if they walked the same number of steps. The third one got only the FitBit and the fourth was the control group and didn’t get anything.
The results were unexpected. After the year passed more the 90% of them stopped using the fitness trackers. The people who walked the most in the first 6 months were the ones that got to keep the money. Despite this, they did not have lower blood pressure or lose any weight.
The author of the study, Eric Finkelstein said that he believed that the tracker would work better, but didn’t. The first thing to cross the researchers’ minds was that the money would make people walk more, and at first, it worked but after a period of time, they stopped using the device.
The manager of the Fitbit Group says that they are confident that the product is good and that it helps people.
Dena Bravata, one of the researchers, said that despite the fact that the study is one of the best they should have focused on people who were overweight and not normal fit persons. She mentioned that in order for the study to show any differences, the people who use the fitness trackers should be the ones that have health or weight problems.