Reliability and validity of two fitness tracker devices in the laboratory and home environment for older community-dwelling people

Abstract Background Two-thirds of older Australians are sedentary. Fitness trackers have been popular with younger people and may encourage older adults to become more active. Older adults may have different gait patterns and as such it is important to establish whether fitness trackers are valid an...

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Main Authors: Elissa Burton, Keith D. Hill, Nicola T. Lautenschlager, Cecilie Thøgersen-Ntoumani, Gill Lewin, Eileen Boyle, Erin Howie
Format: Article
Language:English
Published: BMC 2018-05-01
Series:BMC Geriatrics
Subjects:
Online Access:http://link.springer.com/article/10.1186/s12877-018-0793-4
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spelling doaj-ecfa6acfe1b64d7194398b2929e60c152020-11-25T02:36:41ZengBMCBMC Geriatrics1471-23182018-05-0118111210.1186/s12877-018-0793-4Reliability and validity of two fitness tracker devices in the laboratory and home environment for older community-dwelling peopleElissa Burton0Keith D. Hill1Nicola T. Lautenschlager2Cecilie Thøgersen-Ntoumani3Gill Lewin4Eileen Boyle5Erin Howie6School of Physiotherapy & Exercise Science, Curtin UniversitySchool of Physiotherapy & Exercise Science, Curtin UniversityDepartment of Psychiatry, Academic Unit for Psychiatry of Old Age, The University of Melbourne and NorthWestern Mental Health, Melbourne HealthSchool of Psychology, Curtin UniversitySchool of Nursing, Midwifery & Paramedicine, Curtin UniversitySchool of Physiotherapy & Exercise Science, Curtin UniversityDepartment of Health, Human Performance & Recreation, University of ArkansasAbstract Background Two-thirds of older Australians are sedentary. Fitness trackers have been popular with younger people and may encourage older adults to become more active. Older adults may have different gait patterns and as such it is important to establish whether fitness trackers are valid and reliable for this population. The aim of the study was to test the reliability and validity of two fitness trackers (Fitbit Flex and ChargeHR) by step count when worn by older adults. Reliability and validity were tested in two conditions: 1) in the laboratory using a two-minute-walk-test (2MWT) and 2) in a free-living environment. Methods Two 2MWTs were completed while wearing the fitness trackers. Participants were videoed during each test. Participants were then given one fitness tracker and a GENEactiv accelerometer to wear at home for 14-days. Results Thirty-one participants completed two 2MWTs and 30 completed the free-living procedure. Intra Class Correlation’s of the fitness trackers with direct observation of steps (criterion validity) was high (ICC:0.86,95%CI:0.76,0.93). However, both fitness trackers underestimated steps. Excellent test-retest reliability (ICC ≥ 0.75) was found between the two 2MWTs for each device, particularly the ChargeHR devices. Good strength of agreement was found for total distance and steps (fitness tracker) and moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (GENEactiv) for the free-living environment (Spearman Rho’s 0.78 and 0.74 respectively). Conclusion Reliability and validity of the Flex and ChargeHR when worn by older adults is good, however both devices underestimated step count within the laboratory environment. These fitness trackers appear suitable for consumer use and promoting physical activity for older adults.http://link.springer.com/article/10.1186/s12877-018-0793-4AgeingActivity trackerAccelerometer
collection DOAJ
language English
format Article
sources DOAJ
author Elissa Burton
Keith D. Hill
Nicola T. Lautenschlager
Cecilie Thøgersen-Ntoumani
Gill Lewin
Eileen Boyle
Erin Howie
spellingShingle Elissa Burton
Keith D. Hill
Nicola T. Lautenschlager
Cecilie Thøgersen-Ntoumani
Gill Lewin
Eileen Boyle
Erin Howie
Reliability and validity of two fitness tracker devices in the laboratory and home environment for older community-dwelling people
BMC Geriatrics
Ageing
Activity tracker
Accelerometer
author_facet Elissa Burton
Keith D. Hill
Nicola T. Lautenschlager
Cecilie Thøgersen-Ntoumani
Gill Lewin
Eileen Boyle
Erin Howie
author_sort Elissa Burton
title Reliability and validity of two fitness tracker devices in the laboratory and home environment for older community-dwelling people
title_short Reliability and validity of two fitness tracker devices in the laboratory and home environment for older community-dwelling people
title_full Reliability and validity of two fitness tracker devices in the laboratory and home environment for older community-dwelling people
title_fullStr Reliability and validity of two fitness tracker devices in the laboratory and home environment for older community-dwelling people
title_full_unstemmed Reliability and validity of two fitness tracker devices in the laboratory and home environment for older community-dwelling people
title_sort reliability and validity of two fitness tracker devices in the laboratory and home environment for older community-dwelling people
publisher BMC
series BMC Geriatrics
issn 1471-2318
publishDate 2018-05-01
description Abstract Background Two-thirds of older Australians are sedentary. Fitness trackers have been popular with younger people and may encourage older adults to become more active. Older adults may have different gait patterns and as such it is important to establish whether fitness trackers are valid and reliable for this population. The aim of the study was to test the reliability and validity of two fitness trackers (Fitbit Flex and ChargeHR) by step count when worn by older adults. Reliability and validity were tested in two conditions: 1) in the laboratory using a two-minute-walk-test (2MWT) and 2) in a free-living environment. Methods Two 2MWTs were completed while wearing the fitness trackers. Participants were videoed during each test. Participants were then given one fitness tracker and a GENEactiv accelerometer to wear at home for 14-days. Results Thirty-one participants completed two 2MWTs and 30 completed the free-living procedure. Intra Class Correlation’s of the fitness trackers with direct observation of steps (criterion validity) was high (ICC:0.86,95%CI:0.76,0.93). However, both fitness trackers underestimated steps. Excellent test-retest reliability (ICC ≥ 0.75) was found between the two 2MWTs for each device, particularly the ChargeHR devices. Good strength of agreement was found for total distance and steps (fitness tracker) and moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (GENEactiv) for the free-living environment (Spearman Rho’s 0.78 and 0.74 respectively). Conclusion Reliability and validity of the Flex and ChargeHR when worn by older adults is good, however both devices underestimated step count within the laboratory environment. These fitness trackers appear suitable for consumer use and promoting physical activity for older adults.
topic Ageing
Activity tracker
Accelerometer
url http://link.springer.com/article/10.1186/s12877-018-0793-4
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