Since the mid-1990s, people have been doing less and less walking or bicycling to work and school and spending a lot more time staring at screens.
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Research is revealing that fitness trackers alone can be helpful facilitators toward changing a sedentary lifestyle but don’t motivate people to increase their physical activity.
About one in five Aussies currently own a wearable fitness tracker of some kind. Yet many people doubt their effectiveness. Let’s see what the research suggests.
We believe fitness trackers keep us healthy, and connected toys keep children safe – but such devices are easily abused.
Riding together from afar can help you build the exercise habit.
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From step counters and active video games to apps for exercisers and tech-enabled gear, there are a lot of ways to combine your workouts with your digital life.
Fitness information from wearable devices can reveal when the body is fighting an infection.
Nico De Pasquale Photography/Stone via Getty Images
Fitness information like resting heart rate collected by wearable devices can’t diagnose diseases, but it can signal when something is wrong. That can be enough to prompt a COVID-19 test.
Eliud Kipchoge can run a marathon in under two hours. How fast might you manage?
Training data collected by fitness trackers may be useful to predict marathon performance
The watchdog has voiced concerns over the proposed US$2.1 billion merger, from which both users and Australian health services could lose out.
Wearable fitness trackers have less accuracy when used in certain ways.
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A health informatics researcher explains why people don’t always get the ‘credit’ they think they should from using wearable fitness trackers.
A small body of research has started to explore how fitness trackers and calorie counting apps might be linked to disordered eating and exercise.
Insurance companies collect data from fitness trackers to help improve business decisions.
People are more willing to participate in fitness tracker-based insurance policies when they are in control of their participation.
German study shows that a multi-pronged approach works best.
Jeff Williams, chief operating officer of Apple, talks about the Apple Watch 4 and its ability to detect irregularities in heartbeat on Sept. 12, 2018 in Cupertino, California.
Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP Photo
As health care grows more digital, an array of health apps promise to track steps, count heartbeats and look at moles. But without more FDA oversight, could we be shooting ourselves in the foot?
In the brave new world of information capital, data collected from wearables and other technologies could be a slippery slope to a new social hierarchy.
An offer that appears beneficial on the surface, but can lead to unintended negative consequences is called a “perverse incentive”.
Industry representatives wear fitness trackers at the International Consumer Electronics Show in January 2014 in Las Vegas. Health and fitness information is being increasingly shared with insurance companies.
(AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)
Insurer John Hancock now requires customers to use activity trackers for life insurance policies. Here’s how that will put life insurance and even mortgages out of reach for many people.
Gadgets that tell too many people to go to the doctor are a worry, but the growing enthusiasm for health monitoring should be encouraged.
Heart-rate monitors can be accurate – as long as you don’t move.
Wearable systems can reveal just how hard these skaters’ bodies are working.
AP Photo/Bernat Armangue
Wearables help regular people track their activity, but sophisticated technology can give deeper insights to elite athletes.
Fitness trackers report their location and map the Burning Man festival in the Nevada desert.
Screenshot of Strava Heat Map
It’s not just fitness trackers – mobile phones can reveal users’ whereabouts too, even with location tracking turned off.
Fitbits and other trackers are just the latest iteration of the fitness industry’s relationship with technology.
Sales of Apple smartwatches are increasing, while Fitbit sales are on the decline.
By Crew [CC0 or CC0], via Wikimedia Commons
Research shows that people’s social networks, employment conditions and life stages all impact their use of wearable devices. Understanding these factors can help you achieve your fitness goals.