Watch any advert for fitness trackers and you could be forgiven for thinking that they are only for hipster millennials who love technology. Nothing could be further from the truth. Fitness tracker manufacturers are also aiming at other markets. One of which is to create a purposeful, useful fitness tracker for seniors.
Manufactures of fitness trackers such as Fitbit, Garmin and others have realised that there is a lot of value in producing a fitness tracker for seniors. It makes sense, as people of that age are growing in number, tend to have a reasonable amount of disposable income and are increasingly engaged with their health and well-being.
Another fact, to bear in mind, is that populations around the world are living longer. Of course, as people get older it is easy to settle in to an easy life and not exercise as much as you once did. As we all know, a bad idea. Maintaining an active body is one of the most effective ways of warding of threats to your well being.
This has been noticed at government level too. It is clear that there is a direct correlation between increased age and a higher chance of getting a complex chronic illness such as diabetes, stroke or issues with your heart. As such, they are determined to do as much as they can to reduce the burden on society
There are lots of options being investigated but as far as this article is concerned we are looking at fitness tracker for seniors as a way to tackle this problem.
How can a fitness tracker for seniors help my lifestyle?
Simple. The fitness tracker allows you to track long term patterns by monitoring vitals such as blood pressure, temperature and heart rate. The act of monitoring gives you a real insight into your daily patterns of sleep and exercise. When this is coupled with the data from your fitness tracker and some form of motivational goals in the fitness trackers app it can keep you motivated. This in turn helps you achieve your health goals such as reduced blood pressure and lower weight Because you are really keeping a track of how your body is doing over time in a measured way you will be able to spot abnormal patterns. Indeed, if anything untoward does reveal itself it can then be discussed with the relevant medic professional
What are the must have characteristics in a fitness tracker for seniors?
Of course, as you get older some things such as your vision and motor skills deteriorate slightly. We have taken this into account and created what we think are the key characteristics to look out for when buying a fitness tracker for seniors
- Attractiveness – it needs to be aesthetically pleasing and well designed so that you won’t be embarrassed to show it to your friends. Ideally, it should blend well with what you are wearing
- Easy to use – A lot of people are like my Mum and don’t want to be faffing about pressing lots of buttons to get the tracker to do something. A fitness tracker should be easy to get out to box, come with a clear set of instructions and be simple to configure both the tracker and the synching so that it can be used to the best of its capabilities
- Comfortable – to get the best from a fitness tracker it needs to collect a lot of data. To do this it needs to be worn all the time. It should fit or attach nicely and not cause any discomfort or distraction.
- Large display – most people of a certain age would have grown up with normal wrist watches so a large display is familiar as well as providing the ability to see at a glance how the fitness regime is going.
- Multiple tracking options – to give the best chance of tracking patterns the device should as a minimum track calories, sleep, heart rate and daily activity. If more options are offered even better.
- Long battery life – a fitness tracker loses its usefulness if it is always on charge because you will forget to wear it. A longer battery life means it will stay where it belongs tracking your activity.
- Waterproof – swimming is quite a popular activity due its non weight bearing nature so a waterproof fitness tracker is ideal for those visits to the pool.
- Informative – by giving clear, concise, up to date and easy to interpret views of the data the fitness tracker can use gamification to drive you towards your fitness goals
Top pick of fitness trackers for seniors
1. Fitbit Surge
Fitbit Surge is another device which looks less like a fitness tracker and more like a watch which makes it ideal for the seniors market.
+ Multiple sizes and adjustable strap for comfort
+ Large screen
+ 7 day battery life, GPS tracking, heart rate monitor
– Not waterproof
A great offering from Samsung. The Gear Fit 2 is jam packed with functionality that will help you achieve your fitness goals.
+ Large display with clear legible numbers
+ Can play music
+ Integrates well with Samsung Health
+ GPS tracking and heart rate monitoring
– Needs a smartphone to get the best from the device
– Battery life only 3 – 4 days
– App support is sketchy
The Vivosmart 3 is another multi-utility watch in the Garmin lineup. It is designed to focus on your daily activities and keep you informed of how your health is progressing.
+ Small, sleek design
+ 4 – 5 day battery life
+ Smart notifications and vibration alert
+ Can change display to watch face
– No interchangeable bands available
– Not good for tracking swimming
– No GPS
4. Fitbit Blaze
The Fitbit Blaze is a full on smart watch with fitness capabilities. It is not an obvious choice as far as a fitness tracker for seniors but it offers several of the key characteristics:
+ Large clear LCD display
+ Long battery life
+ Looks good and like a watch, the look can also be changed with interchangeable straps
+ Tracks multiple activities and heart rate
– Not waterproof
– Fairly expensive
It is fair to say that the fitness tracker for seniors market has perhaps been underdeveloped. However, things are starting to look up. People, governments and society as a whole are beginning to recognise the benefit of exercising throughout your whole life. When choosing a fitness tracker it is important to understand how fitness trackers work so you can trust the data coming from then. Also, make sure to get the one that best suits you. We think that our list should give you some ideas or look for other fitness tracker that have the key characteristics.