The effect of a wearable physical activity monitor (Fitbit One) on physical activity behaviour in women: A pilot study

Greg Farnell, Jacob Barkley


Introducion. With wearable technology topping both the 2016 and 2017 American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Fitness Trends survey, research in this area is needed to help determine the importance of such devices. Purpose. To determine the effect of wearing a popular, commercially-available wearable activity monitor (i.e., Fitbit One) upon physical activity behaviour relative to a group who was not utilizing such a monitor. Methods. A sample of 19 healthy adult women completed the Human Activity Profile survey to assess physical activity behaviour pre – and post – intervention. For the intervention, nine participants received a Fitbit One accelerometer to wear for six weeks, while the remaining participants (control group) did not receive an accelerometer. Results. There were no significant differences (p ≥ 0.16) in physical activity. However, the control group reduced physical activity by ≥20% from pre to post intervention whereas the Fitbit One group was largely unchanged (0.5% - 2.4% decrease). Conclusion. While wearing a physical activity monitor did not increase physical activity behaviour it may help maintain it.




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