After two years the people with trackers had lost an average of 3.5 kg, whilst those without trackers had lost 5.9 kg. How could this be? Theorise include those wearing the trackers relied too much on the devices. Alternatively, after counting their steps, they may have rewarded themselves with treats. Or maybe on seeing their results they were too demoralised to keep exercising. This really surprised the scientists who had expected the opposite to be true.
Maybe the results on this test group were influenced by the fact that they were already being treated for being over-weight, but never the less it provides an eye-opening insight into the complex issues that surround weight loss for many people.
So what can we as fitness professionals take from this? For me, counting steps can be an important part of a weight loss program, but not in isolation. It is too simplistic for people to rely on tracker and think “damn I didn’t achieve my target today”. What is needed is more support and questions, such as “why did you not achieve your target?”, “what is happening in your life” and importantly “how can we improve things?”. So we shouldn’t be put off step counting, but we should understand that as with any weight-loss program, one size does not fit all. We need to know our clients to understand what makes them tick so we can work with them to find what works for them. This is why as part of the PilatesEVO educations I teach about how we can use methods such as NLP to understand and connect with our clients in a way that many trainers never can. As with anything, it is not enough to have a insular, one-dimensional approach. Be it weight loss, weight gain, fitness, or wellness, I teach that we must consider physical, psychological and spiritual elements as if we do not, then our clients will never achieve their maximum potential.
So the answer to my question, do fitness trackers make you fatter, is of course not so simple. Any weight loss program must include a total package of exercise, diet and psychology that is tailor-made for specific clients, and we must never under estimate the complexities of the human mind.
We have all had different experiences, so if you have an opinion about this topic then please share it with me by clicking on www.pilatesevo.com.