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Validity of the Fitbit® Distance Traveled Feature Among Multiple Speed Trials: 2672 Board #192 June 2 930 AM - 1100 AM

Marton, Christina J.

Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: May 2017 - Volume 49 - Issue 5S - p 762
doi: 10.1249/01.mss.0000519029.25537.7d
E-33 Free Communication/Poster - Monitoring Friday, June 2, 2017, 7:30 AM - 12:30 PM Room: Hall F

Gustavus Adolphus College, Saint Peter, MN.


(No relationships reported)

A science review by Delago (2014) suggested that the distance-traveled feature on Fitbit® was an accurate measurement. However, as speed increased the accuracy of the Fitbit® decreased, meaning the faster the pace, the greater the error for distance measured. Whereas a systematic review conducted by Evenson et al. (2015) reported only one study that measured the distance-traveled feature. This study concluded that the Fitbit® over-estimated at lower speeds and underestimated at faster speeds.

PURPOSE: To examine whether the fitness device, Fitbit® Charge, provides an accurate measurement of the distance-traveled feature at various speeds and to expand on the research regarding the distance-traveled feature.

METHODS: Twenty-eight healthy students from a Division III college participated in this study. A repeated measure ANVOA experimental design compared the Fitbit® distance-traveled output under three dependent variable speeds of 2.5mph (76.1m/min), 4.5mph (120.7m/min), and 6mph (160.9m/min) to a Quinton MedTrack ST55 treadmill distance-traveled measurement. All participants completed a six-minute trial for each of three different speeds on a treadmill while wearing the Fitbit® Charge. Following each six-minute trial, the distance-traveled was compared between the treadmill and the Fitbit® output. A repeated measure ANOVA analysis was used to test for significant differences (p < .05) among the three speeds between the Fitbit® and the treadmill.

RESULTS: Results did not detect significant differences in distance-traveled between the Fitbit® Charge compared to the treadmill at 2.5mph (F(1,27) = 0.67, p = .42), 4.5mph (F(1,27) = 2.45, p = .13), or 6mph (F(1,24) = .66, p = .43) speeds.

CONCULSION: It seems reasonable to conclude that the distance-traveled feature on the Fitbit® Charge is valid when compared to treadmill output at these three speeds. Future research could look at a wider range of speeds to ensure further accuracy. IRB# 1516-0099

© 2017 American College of Sports Medicine