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IRC Blog

IRC Blog
Posted: Friday, July 13, 2018
By: IRC Blog

Fitness trackers helping seniors become more active

Do you wear a fitness tracker? If so, you might be one of more than 2.7 million active older people who are achieving 7,500 steps or more. 

New findings from the Pew Research Center show that older people are more likely to use a wearable fitness monitor such as those made by Fitbit, Garmin, Motiv and other manufacturers. These bracelets and clip-on devices are increasingly popular with older folks.

Fitbit reported that 2.7 million active users were 65 and older, and that nearly one million of them were taking 7,500 steps or more per day. 

A new study published in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise showed that wearing a device like a Fitbit for eight weeks helped motivate inactive adults 50 and older to increase their physical activity. These Fitbit wearers met or exceeded physical activity recommendations. 

Older people who start wearing these devices are able to keep count of their daily steps, log miles and in some cases measure and track heart rate. Another study, published in Annals of Internal Medicine, showed that older people stick with them. 

The study, one of the largest of its kind, followed 55,000 Humana wellness members 65 and older who used a wearable fitness device. After six months, 90 percent of the subjects were still using their wearables. 

In addition to encouraging more activity, wearables can help: 

  • Track changes in health patterns
  • Empower wearers to become better advocates for their own health
  • Bridge the gaps between doctor visits
  • Spur meaningful conversations between patients and health care providers, and
  • Drive earlier interventions and more proactive health care treatment.

 

Wearables also are showing potential to help doctors treat patients with cancer and diabetes and to aid recovery from surgery. 

According to a study of patients published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology: Clinical Cancer Informatics, wearable fitness monitors proved to be a useful tool to help evaluate and treat cancer patients. 

Another study by the Mayo Clinic used Fitbit devices to understand the recovery of older patients after major surgery. The study found a significant positive relationship between physical activity as measured by step count in the early recovery period, length of stay and disposition at dismissal. 

Many of the active, engaged residents of Ingleside at Rock Creek get their daily exercise by walking the trails in nearby Rock Creek Park. Others enjoy swims and water aerobics classes in the community’s indoor pool or join regularly scheduled fitness classes from whole-body exercises to tai chi in the Fitness Center. Fitness Manager Chris Goldman helps residents develop a personalized and effective fitness plan. 

To learn more about this extraordinary Life Plan retirement community, please contact us at (202) 407-9672 or request information here.


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