How Accurate Is Your Fitness Tracker?

They're not a good fit for calorie counters.

By Lacy SchleyAug 7, 2017 5:00 AM
(Credit: Martin-DM/Getty Images)


Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news

If you’re relying on the gadget around your wrist to lose weight, you might need to rethink your game plan. A team from Stanford University recently investigated how good some leading consumer fitness trackers were at monitoring heart rate and calculating calories burned, or energy expenditure. After a group of 60 volunteers tested the fitness bands, researchers realized that while most of the devices measured heart rate well, they all failed to accurately gauge energy expenditure.

Source: “Accuracy in Wrist-Worn, Sensor-Based Measurements of Heart Rate and Energy Expenditure in a Diverse Cohort,” Journal of Personalized Medicine, 2017

1 free article left
Want More? Get unlimited access for as low as $1.99/month
Already a subscriber? Log In or Register
1 free articleSubscribe
Want unlimited access?

Subscribe today and save 70%


Already a subscriber? Log In or Register
More From Discover
Recommendations From Our Store
Shop Now
Stay Curious
Our List

Sign up for our weekly science updates.

To The Magazine

Save up to 70% off the cover price when you subscribe to Discover magazine.

Copyright © 2021 Kalmbach Media Co.