Today’s Wonder of the Day was inspired by paul. paul Wonders, “How do Fitbits work” Thanks for WONDERing with us, paul!
What do you like to do when you get home each afternoon after school? If you're like most kids, homework probably isn't on the top of your to-do list. Those spots might be reserved for things like after-school snacks, playing video games, and maybe even taking a nap.
Hopefully, though, you might tackle your homework quickly so you can go outside instead. While video games and naps can be fun and even helpful, there's nothing quite like going for a walk, riding your bike, or playing with your friends to have fun and get some exercise.
Everyone knows how important exercise is, right? You've probably been told many times in many different contexts that exercise is an important and necessary part of a healthy lifestyle. Eating right alone will not make you the healthy individual you want to be. You have to combine a good diet with plenty of exercise.
But how do you know how much exercise is enough? Various guidelines exist for all sorts of different types of exercise. One form of exercise that we all get each and every day is walking. Some fitness experts believe most people should take at least 10,000 steps each day to improve physical fitness.
With everything else going on in your life, it's probably going to be fairly difficult to count and keep track of all the steps you take. Who has the time, patience, or energy for that? Fortunately, there are devices that have been invented that will count and keep track of the number of steps you take each day. What are we talking about? The pedometer, of course!
Pedometers come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. Most of them are quite small. Some are worn on your belt around your waist. Others are like a bracelet you wear around your wrist. Some are even worn on your shoes!
The first pedometers were mechanical models that worked much like a pendulum clock. They featured tiny moving parts that would move back and forth along with the motion of the body as you walked. Each time your body moved with a step, the tiny parts would trigger a switch that would add one to your step count.
More modern pedometers take advantage of the many technological advances that have been made in the last decade. Rather than moving mechanical parts, these newer pedometers keep track of steps with internal gyroscopes, accelerometers, and Global Positioning System (GPS) signals.
Modern pedometers can also interact with smartphones via Bluetooth technology. This allows your pedometer to communicate with your smartphone to let it know your current step count. Software applications on your smartphone can then display this information so it's easier to see. These applications can also use that data to calculate other variables, such as distance walked and the number of calories burned.
If you've ever used a pedometer, you know they're not always 100% accurate. A pedometer might not always recognize a step if your body doesn't move enough. On the other hand, it might also count steps when you're not walking if you're otherwise moving your body or shaking the pedometer.
If you're using an older pedometer, you might need to adjust your step count by 10% or more. Newer models claim 95% or better accuracy. The only way truly to gauge a pedometer's accuracy is by keeping track of your step count as you walk and then comparing that number with the pedometer's total.