Using a pedometer helps promote a physically active lifestyle because they are portable. But the reasons only start there.
Pedometers have come a long way over the years. Yes, they still count steps, but now you can find very sophisticated devices or apps for your phone. They can track all of your physical activity from the time you wake up until you go back to bed.
So, let’s take a look at how using a pedometer can promote a physically active lifestyle and keep your heart healthy.
You Can Take Them Anywhere
The number one reason using a pedometer can promote a physically active lifestyle is that you can take them anywhere. They’re typically worn on your waist or wrist, but pedometers are now on your phone. It’s usually in the form of a health app that will track other things, but steps are always included.
As it tracks your steps, a newer pedometer can also track things like:
- How far you’ve walked
- How many minutes of activity
- Heart rate
Since you can take them anywhere, and it’s on your phone, you will have a constant reminder of how active you are on any given day.
Pedometers Measure All Activity
Today’s pedometers consistently track all functional activity. As soon as you start to move, it starts tracking you. Whether it’s walking to your office or your next class at school, if your pedometer (or your phone) is on you, you’re being measured. All movement, recreational activity, and structured fitness activities will be accounted for.
Anyone Can Wear a Pedometer
Another way using a pedometer can promote a physically active lifestyle is that anyone can wear one. Pedometers can be worn by children and adults.
Since most kids have phones these days, they can have a movement-tracking app on their phone, too. You and your family members can help support each other to be more physically active by wearing pedometers.
Pedometers Allow You to Set Goals
When you’re using a pedometer to track your movement, you can compete against yourself by setting daily goals. Maybe you start with a certain number of steps each day, but you can also look at things like how many minutes of movement you’re getting, or how many calories you’re burning each day.
Before you know it, you will be doing things like:
- Taking 10-minute walk breaks or having walking meetings at work
- Completing an extra lap at the store
- Walking in place while waiting in line or watching TV.
Your goals will motivate you to keep moving and to get as much physical activity as you can.
Your Health Will Improve
Even doing as little as 20 to 30 minutes of movement each day will improve your health. You can check your heart rate or use the Rating of Perceived Exertion (RPE) table to determine a person's workload. This is a scale of how hard you feel you’re working while exercising.
Measuring and being aware of one's physical activity intensity level is important while wearing a pedometer. The important thing to remember is that all movement matters. You can find out exactly how much movement you should be getting each day by downloading our “Physical Activities Guide.” It contains the updated guidelines and you may be surprised by how little physical activity you need each day to help your heart.