Research Study Abstract

Comparison Between Four Personal Activity Monitors And The Actigraph GT3X+ To Measure Daily Steps

  • Presented on May 30, 2014

Background: Currently there are numerous personal activity monitors on the market that track an individual’s daily steps and energy expenditure. These devices, which are affordable and user friendly, can increase physical activity through motivation and personal goal setting. Although these devices have great potential to measure and track daily steps, currently there is little evidence to show that they can accurately measure steps when compared to a research quality activity monitor.

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to compare daily step counts from the FitBit One, the FitBit Flex, the Jawbone Up, and the Nike Fuel Band to the Actigraph GT3X+.

Methods: Participants in this study (17 college aged adults) were recruited to wear the Actigraph GT3X+ and the FitBit One on the right hip and the FitBit Flex, the Jawbone Up, and the Nike Fuel Band on the right wrist for 7 consecutive days. All devices were worn at the same time during those 7 days. Subjects were instructed to wear the devices at all times except when sleeping, bathing, or exercising. Following completion of the 7-day period, all data was downloaded and the average daily step count was calculated for each device.

Results: There were significant differences (p=0.025) in the average daily step count between the devices. Post hoc comparisons showed that the steps measured by the Jawbone Up (10,298 ± 3,851 steps, p=0.008) were significantly higher than the Actigraph GT3X+ (7,766 ± 2,388 steps). The FitBit Flex (9,596 ± 2,361 steps, p=0.052), the Fitbit One (9,596 ±2,361 steps p=0.497), and the Nike FuelBand (8,400 ± 2,583 steps, p=0.966) were not significantly different than the Actigraph GT3X+.

Conclusion: Daily steps measured using the Nike FuelBand, the FitBit One, and the FitBit Flex were not significantly different from the Actigraph GT3X+. The Jawbone Up significantly over estimated daily steps when compared to the Actigraph GT3X+. These results suggest that Nike FuelBand, the FitBit One, and the FitBit Flex can be used to accurately measure daily steps.

Presented at

ACSM 2014 Annual Meeting