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Are Fitbits making fit hip?

Feb 22, 2016

Lately, it seems that “fitness” is everywhere. Instagram accounts promoting juice cleanses, waist trainers, and new accessories and apps that help to monitor your food intake, hydration, and step count throughout the day. Studies urging office workers to “get up and move!” – one thing is clear: we cannot escape it.

Although it could seem like overkill at times, it also directly depicts what is going on in people’s heads. According to a 2012 study done by The University of Tennessee, the average adult took just 5,117 steps per day – barely half of the daily steps recommended by the U.S. Surgeon General, who recommends a mere 10,000 steps a day. If this inspires panic, then you are an ideal candidate for a more recent obsession in response to these terrifying statistics. Cue the Fitbit.

What, exactly, does the Fitbit do? What doesn’t it do, is more like it. By using sensors, similar to the Nintendo Wii remote, it tracks your movement, logging every step, every length of stairs, calories burned, sleeping habits, among other things. Debuting its first model around 2008, the original Fitbit has made more and more advances with every year that passes. But how does this connect to the current obsession with fitness?

Since the unveiling of the first Fitbit (coined the Fitbit Tracker in 2008), we have seen more and more fitness-centered interests in the growing public. We have seen a major change in the way the public views fitness and the involvement of it in their every day lives, and this change is reflected in the design updates applied to the Fitbit family. As the years went on, the Fitbit was becoming less and less discreet. Today, the Fitbit is available in a sleek watchband design and celebrities have been sporting them next to their stacks of Cartier Love Bangles. It has officially reached “trendy” status.

Although the product requires more than just accessorizing, the release of the first Fitbit bracelet has inspired more and more converts to find their way into the fitness world. This might have something  to do with the fact that you can now post your various fitness feats onto your social media page – boast to your followers your stair count for the day! Brag about your fabulous night’s sleep! All while hashtagging your Fitbit model name, as well as which “step challenge” you are conquering that week. The possibilities for over-sharing are endless.

All joking aside, the Fitbit has created a positive change in the greater public’s health. The average steps-per-day statistic continues to grow with healthy trends becoming more common and obesity, while still remaining high, is beginning to decrease. America loves the one-stop-shop mindset – something that can “do it all” so that you don’t have to. Fitbit fulfills all of this with worry-free monitoring, analytics of your patterns, habits and how to fix them, and easy posting to social media. Let’s face it; a personal trainer would cost a fortune and they probably wouldn’t even post your accomplishments for you. Fitbit may be direct proof that if you make something easy and wearable, anyone will jump, run, and climb onto the bandwagon.