What Are Fitness Bands, Are They Worth The Money And Should You Buy One?

What Are Fitness Bands, Are They Worth The Money And Should You Buy One?
Products Mentioned
Tom Tom

Have you noticed that it is no longer 'trendy' to wear a traditional dial watch? If you think that everyone's suddenly switched to digital watches, you're only partially wrong. The latest 'it' contraption that most people have strapped to their wrists is a fitness band--a device that monitors and tracks your fitness-related metrics such as distance walked, calorie consumption, and heartbeat. And fitness freaks seem to swear by them! But are they really worth the money or just another hyped-up 'trendy' gadget? Read on to find out!

Table of Contents

    Advantages Of Fitness Bands

    So you've seen all your favourite fitness influencers flash their fitness bands everywhere--and now you're considering buying one. If you're serious about making that purchase, here are a few things that'll help you decide if you *really* need it!

    • Tracks Your Steps
    • Counts Your Calories
    • Keeps Track Of Vital Signs
    • Monitors Your Sleep

    Tracks Your Steps

    Even the most basic fitness tracker out there will have an accelerometer--a device that measures how fast something is changing its speed or direction. This is very useful if you want to track your movements, such as the number of steps you've taken in a day.

    Counts Your Calories

    If fitness, working out and maintaining a healthy lifestyle is important to you, then keeping a track of the number of calories you consume and burn is important. Most fitness trackers use your heart rate to estimate how many calories you’ve burned during the day. Some of them come with an app where you can enter the food that you've consumed--letting you keep track of calories consumed vs burned, helping you reach your fitness goal faster.

    Keeps Track Of Vital Signs

    Most fitness trackers in the market have the option of tracking your heart rate not only while you're working out but also while you are resting. Some of them can also detect your skin temperature and level of perspiration. And all of this data can be combined to figure out the status of your health and to keep track of your progress while working out.

    Monitors Your Sleep

    Getting enough sleep plays a very important role in your journey to fitness and your overall health. This is why most fitness trackers come with a sleep monitoring system. These trackers detect motion while you’re lying down to figure out when you’re awake, lightly asleep, or in deep sleep. However, it is impossible for these trackers to be accurate about your exact sleeping habits.

    Disadvantages Of Fitness Bands

    Now that you know everything that a fitness band can do for you, here are some disadvantages that you should know about before you shell out your hard-earned cash.

    • They're Expensive
    • Possible Inaccuracies
    • Loss Of Interest
    • Obsession With Numbers

    They're Expensive

    Fitness bands are sophisticated devices that are used to track important vital functions of your body. Hence, it is no surprise that they also come with a hefty price tag. It’s possible to buy an affordable one, but most of the cheaper ones aren’t as good. The math is simple: the more features you want, the more you should expect to spend.

    Possible Inaccuracies

    No matter how expensive your fitness band is--there is no single activity tracker that can be 100% accurate. Most of the numbers the tracker will show are close estimates. In fact, studies have found that these trackers do a good job of tracking steps, but they’re not so great at measuring other things like movement, sleep and vitals. So they may be giving you an inaccurate representation of your own fitness--which might hamper your progress.

    Loss Of Interest

    Like all shiny new things that people buy and then lose interest in, fitness trackers are something you can regret buying once the excitement wears off. The underlying problem is 'trend' culture and fear of missing out, leading many people to make impulse purchases. The truth of the matter is, you should buy a fitness band only and *only* if you are interested in fitness as a lifestyle and see yourself using a fitness band long-term.

    Obsession With Numbers

    When you first start using a fitness band, having so much insight into so many important functions of your body can be exciting--but also a bit overwhelming. Fitness bands might not be the best idea if you are suffering from or recovering from eating disorders and other related illnesses. Constantly keeping track calories burned or steps taken can lead you to become obsessed with numbers, which might effect your overall mental health.

    Best Fitness Bands Available In India

    So you've weighed the pros and cons and finally decided to buy a fitness band. Confused about which one is best suited for you out of the myriad of options out there? Let us help you out.

    Moov Now

    Moov Now 3D Fitness Tracker
    INR 9,499 AT Amazon

    This fitness band is the best in the market if you want a bang for your buck. Besides features like basic sleep and steps tracking, the band is super lightweight and also comes with boxing and rep-based training, and with a dedicated swimming feature! While it doesn't include a heart-tracker or a screen, the band promises to offer a six-month-long battery life. 

    Good battery life
    No heart tracker
    No screen

    Samsung Gear Fit 2 Pro

    Samsung Gear Fit2 Pro Smart Fitness Band
    INR 25,999 AT Amazon

    This fitness tracker comes in a stunning design with a massive AMOLED screen, displaying your vitals large and clear. It also comes with a GPS tracker, so you don't need to carry your phone if you want to go running on new routes without getting lost. Besides that, it also tracks your heart rate and can be used while swimming.

    Compatible with Android and iOS
    Attractive features
    No alarm
    Battery life is average

    TomTom Spark 3

    Tom Tom
    TomTom Spark 3 Music Fitness Sports Watch
    INR 22,999 AT Amazon

    This is probably one of the most feature-rich fitness bands available in the market at the moment and is completely worth the money. Its fantastic line-up of features includes GPS tracking, heart rate monitor and route navigation. But the most impressive features is that can upload and listen to music directly from the watch, without asking for help from your smartphone. 

    Value for money
    Average sound quality
    Complicated menu system

    Huawei Band 2 Pro

    Huawei ERS-B29 Band 2 Pro Activity Tracker
    INR 4,990 AT Amazon

    If you don't like the chunkiness of fitness trackers, this sleek band will really impress you. This compact band actually manages to pack tons of features including heart rate monitoring, VO2 max, GPS, step and sleep tracking. And did we mention that it has an impressive battery life of 21 days? If this is your first smartwatch purchase, this would be an ideal buy.

    Impressive battery life
    Boring design
    Clunky app

    Fitbit Charge 2

    Fitbit Charge 2 Wireless Activity Tracker and Sleep Wristband
    INR 9,989 AT Amazon

    This is the most value-for-money Fitbit available in the market at the moment. While it might be slightly more expensive than other Fitbits, it connects with the GPS on your phone, has a large screen to display your data and a heart rate tracker. 

    Large screen
    Comfortable to wear
    No in-built GPS
    Limited connectivity to a smartphone

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Are fitness bands accurate?

    If you're looking for a fitness band that is 100% accurate, then you won't find a single one in the market. However, most fitness bands are accurate enough to be useful to you. Almost all fitness trackers count your steps and distance travelled, and it’s increasingly common to measure heart rate. They generally also provide some estimate of your energy expenditure or calories burned, and they may estimate your sleep quality. The trick is to know that these figures are estimates and use that knowledge to improve your overall health.

    Which fitness tracker is the most accurate?

    Like we mentioned above, there isn't really one fitness tracker that is 100% accurate. You should buy your fitness tracker based on which feature is more important to you--are you looking for one with in-built GPS, something that monitors your heart activity or a waterproof one for when you're swimming? Analyse your requirements and buy one based on those.

    Do fitness bands work without a phone?

    Yes, all fitness bands can be used without a smartphone. You get details about your fitness activity like heart rate, calories burnt, distance covered and others on the fitness band itself. However, when fitness bands are compatible with smartphones, they integrate some of the features of the phones and make it hassle-free for you to work out without being weighed down by multiple devices.

    So, are you ready to hop on to the next level of your fitness journey?

    Featured Image: Shutterstock

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