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Comparison of Three Inexpensive Commercially Available Activity Monitors to a Previously Validated Tri-Axial Accelerometer: 117 May 27, 1000 AM - 1015 AM

Reid, Ryan ER; Comptour, Andrea M.; Insogna, Jessica A.; Bewski, Nicole A.; Sciortino, Cristina D.; Andersen, Ross E. FACSM

Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: May 2015 - Volume 47 - Issue 5S - p 13
doi: 10.1249/01.mss.0000476426.82582.78
A-29 Free Communication/Slide - Fitness and Sport Technology Wednesday, May 27, 2015, 9:30 AM - 11:30 AM Room: 26B

McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada. (Sponsor: Ross E Andersen, FACSM)

Email: ryan.reid@mail.mcgill.ca

(No relationships reported)

Inexpensive personal activity monitors have recently gained popularity with the general public. Given the current wide-spread use of these devices, it is important to ensure that users are attaining accurate information compared to previously validated measures.

PURPOSE: To compare the accuracy of the Fitbit Force™ and One™ activity monitors in measuring steps per day and time spent in different intensities of activity with the ActiGraph GT3X™tri-axial accelerometer.

METHODS: Twenty-two women, 18-26y.o. with a BMI of 23.24 ± 3.26kg/m2 wore two Fitbit Ones TM (Bra and Waist respectively), a Fitbit Force TM (Wrist), and an ActiGraph GT3X™(Waist) for 7-consecutive days. ActiGraph™ data was processed using Actilife™ V5.1.1 and the Freedson equation activity cut points. Fitbit™ data was processed using their proprietary online software. A multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) was used to compare steps per day and time spent in light, moderate and vigorous intensity activities between the four devices. A post-hoc test of the least squared difference was used to determine where any differences occurred

RESULTS: The activity monitors differed in time spent in light F(3,19)= 3.16, p>.05) and vigorous (F(3,19)= 3.16, p>.05) intensity activities. Post-hoc comparisons revealed that the GT3X™ differed from all three Fitbit™ devices in the measurement of time spent in light (GT3X= 89.92±36 min, Force=419.97±129.22 min, Bra=379.93±122.2 min, Waist=392.75±114.78 min) and vigorous activities (GT3X=7.05±9.63 min, Force=36.91±27.7 min, Bra=31.29±18.53 min, Waist=30.45±18.3 min). There was no difference found in the number of steps per day or minutes of moderate intensity activity recorded between the four devices.

CONCLUSIONS: Fitbit™ activity monitors compare well to other previously validated objective activity monitors in the measurement of steps per day and time spent in moderate intensity activities. However, Fitbit™ devices may not accurately quantify the time spent in light and vigorous intensity activities, and therefore may not be the ideal solution for individuals’ personal activity monitoring needs.

© 2015 American College of Sports Medicine