Wearable Technology for Fitness 

Wearable Technology for Fitness

Wearable technology -- would you recognize it if you saw someone dressed in business attire marching up and down the hallway at the bank or workplace? If you’re aware of the growth in wearable technology, you would probably recognize the fitness band or sports activity tracker on their wrist.

Apple watch

We’re living in a time when, once again, healthy is “in.” Many people now consider activity trackers the same as everyday casual wear. Some businesses are encouraging walking meetings rather than sit-down meetings because the exercise and fresh air boost morale and encourage creative thinking.

It’s no longer unusual to hear someone talk about logging their workouts or monitoring their meals through an app on their phone. Is it any wonder that fitness tracker sales and the wearable tech market are expected to reach $34 billion by 2020?

Any piece of technology that you wear on your clothing or body is considered wearable technology. Regardless of what the gadget does or how you benefit, the goal is always to monitor, record, and analyze some part of your life.

When it comes to fitness, these devices have the power to highlight your weaknesses and transform your lifestyle so that you reach your goals faster and more efficiently.

What’s in it for You?

Wearable technology in the fitness industry can do many things for you; but, you have to choose the right device for your personal goals and lifestyle. Consider this quick cheat sheet that will help you determine which features may help you achieve your objectives and which devices may offer some of those monitoring  features.

Your Goals

Helpful Features

Recommended Devices

Increase your activity level for general health benefits.

* Step counter
* Reminders to move
* Calories burned
* Goal setting

* GPS route tracking

* Silent alarm

* Garmin Vivosmart HR+

* Fitbit Zip

* Fitbit Flex 2

* Fitbit Alta

* Fitbit Charge 2

* Misfit Shine 2

* Misfit Ray
* Jawbone UP Move, UP2, UP3, UP4

* Garmin VivoFit

Improve your performance in sports.

* Waterproof
* Pace monitoring
* Timer/split timer
* Laps
* Distance monitoring
* Heartrate monitoring
* Exercise modes (cardio, running, etc.)
* Floors climbed/elevation

* GPS route tracking

* Misfit Vapor Smartwatch

* Suunto Ambit

* Moov Now

* Garmin VivoActive HR

Burn more calories and increase your activity level for weight loss.

* Calories burned
* Step counter

* Distance monitoring
* Active minutes
* Heartrate monitoring
* Exercise modes (cardio, running, etc.)
* Nutrition logging
* Water monitoring/logging

* Floors climbed/elevation

* Silent alarm

* Garmin Vivosmart HR+

* Fitbit Alta

* Fitbit Charge 2

* Fitbit Blaze

* Fitbit Surge

* Misfit Shine 2

* Misfit Phase

* Jawbone UP2, UP3 or UP4

Build muscle and improve strength.

* Body fat/muscle composition estimates

* TomTom Touch

You’re a busy professional who wants to monitor activity levels in a discreet manner.

* Jewelry designs
* Compact designs
* Detailed apps

* Silent alarm


* Withings Steel HR

* Skagen Hagen Connected

* Fitbit Zip

* Fitbit One
* Bellabeat Leaf

* Misfit Swarovski Activity Crystal

* Misfit Link

* Misfit Phase

* Jawbone UP Move

* Jawbone UP3 or UP4

This chart will help you to isolate the wearable technology that corresponds with your lifestyle and fitness goals; but, there are many advanced features that may help you narrow down your options even further, including:

  • Sleep tracking
  • Call and text notifications
  • Calendar alerts
  • On-screen workouts
  • Guided breathing
  • Clock/time
  • Music control

There are also some fitness trackers that are designed for specific sports. For instance, the Nixon Supertide will help surfers monitor the tides at various beaches while the Columbia Switchback was designed for hikers.

Wearable Tech for Sports

Wearable devices aren’t as helpful for strength training as they are for cardio exercise and overall lifestyle development. The wearable technology is great for athletes because it can make a dramatic difference in how you train for speed and endurance over long distances.

It’s also useful for timed drills and for comparing your performance over a long period of time. Some devices will allow you to record a variety of workouts through one app, giving you a digital method of monitoring progress and mapping out plans for future workouts.

The Personal Choice with Wearable Technology

Whether you invest in wearable tech for fitness depends on whether you find it motivating to monitor your performance and set measurable goals, or you may find these devices essential to your daily life.

If you’re more likely to find these gadgets a distraction than a motivating force, then you may want to stick to old school methods of setting and tracking your goals.

A Kaiser Permanente study showed that people who kept daily food records lost twice as much weight as those who kept no records.

Either way you choose, high-tech wear or pen and pad, research has proven that monitoring your progress can go a long way towards keeping you on track.

More Topics That May Interest You

Benefits of Strength Training as We Age
How to Measure Heart Rate
What is Interval Training?
Is Running for Fitness Safe for Seniors?

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The content of this website is not intended to be taken as a replacement for professional medical advice, care, diagnosis or treatment by a doctor, dietitian, nutritionist or fitness instructor.

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