Want to start walking more to increase your physical activity? A new study suggests that people who clip on pedometers, a small device that counts the number of steps you take, are more likely to walk more throughout the day.
Lead author, Gregory Kolt, of the School of Science and Health at the University of Western Sydney and his team evaluated 330 New Zealanders over the age of 65 and found that those who wore pedometers walked on average twice as much as those who did not. Kolt believes that since pedometers allow for a person to constantly check his or her steps and distance walked, it makes it easier to check progress against daily fitness goals.
At the study’s inception, participants had to be considered healthy enough to engage in the required exercise regimen. They were then randomly separated into two groups, with only one of the sections receiving pedometers. The subjects were given New Zealand’s “Green Prescription” for physical activity, a government-sponsored initiative that aims to inspire older adults to exercise regularly for thirty minutes daily.
After a one year period, both groups showed increases in walking rates, but the pedometer group increased its average weekly walking time by nearly fifty minutes, nearly double that of the control group. While neither cohort exhibited a significant decrease in weight, both saw an overall decrease in blood pressure.
The results of this particular study are consistent with previous findings that have indicated that wearing pedometers boosts walking rates for adults. According to one expert, pedometers are a cheap and effective way of encouraging physical activity and healthy lifestyle.
If you have been planning to incorporate walking regularly into your routine, consider purchasing a pedometer as well. There is no easier way to get moving today!