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How accurate are fitness trackers and does it matter? We asked an expert

We can all use a little help staying in shape. Crowbarring exercise into busy lives can be tough and it’s often the first thing that gets jettisoned when something crops up. The best fitness trackers provide us with friendly reminders to get up and out; they track steps, measure our heart rate, estimate calories burned, and give us a general read on how active we are.

Little wonder, then, that millions of people wear some kind of fitness tracking device every day and that the worldwide market is worth billions. But just how accurate are fitness trackers?

“The short answer is: It depends,” Assistant Professor of Kinesiology and Epidemiology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Lisa Cadmus-Bertram told Digital Trends. “The long answer is that they are accurate enough to be useful for most people for most purposes. But it also varies by what it is you’re trying to measure.”

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