Activity / Fitness Trackers
Activity/fitness trackers monitor and track activities such as counting your steps, distance walked or run and calories consumed/burned. Some also measure heartbeat and sleep patterns and can even track caffeine intake, linking it with your sleep! The trackers are worn as bracelets, watches or clipped onto your clothes. They are synced to a computer or smartphone and you can then see in more detail your activity. The data is stored so that you can track how you are doing on a daily basis or over a period of time.
So, which one do you go for? If you are interested in general fitness, you can get a perfectly adequate basic tracker at a reasonable cost. This will, for example, give you a step count, tell you how many calories you’ve burned and maybe monitor sleep quality. The less expensive trackers usually don't have a display, so you have to look at your smartphone or computer to see your step count. Mid-range trackers offer more features and statistics to improve training and include heart rate monitoring at a given time. More expensive trackers include 24/7 heart rate monitors, GPS and offer stacks of extra features, these are more for the serious athletes who want to optimise their training. For more information there is a very good Which? Report that reviews a wide range of fitness-trackers.
What is also important to go with the tracker, is the app to help you assess the information the tracker collects. The app provides features, such as tracking food and drink intake, monitoring your weight, competing with friends, and more. Some apps are more motivational than others, setting goals, etc. useful if you need the extra push.
There have been recent reports about the inaccuracy of some of the fitness-trackers and not just the cheaper ones, so do the research and choose wisely. They can be great tools for general monitoring/tracking purposes to motivate you to exercise more, helping you to get healthier, fitter and/or lose weight.