Pedometers. Step tracking watches. Exercise phone apps. There are so
many exercise monitoring gadgets out there in Brooks stores! They
could make your head spin instead of keeping you active if you let them!
Soft Health and Healing Clinic certainly encourages an active lifestyle as part of the overall Brooks chiropractic treatment plan. Walking is terrific.
Swimming is wonderful. Jogging works. Bicycling will keep you rolling. But
Soft Health and Healing Clinic doesn’t want you frustrated keeping track of what you do, so we
thought a few research studies may calm us all. And as a bonus, they may even inspire
us Brooks folks to keep active, the ultimate goal!
One set of researchers recognized that often patients with chronic low
back pain do well while they are under care, seeing a physician regularly, but
decline quickly when they are discharged from care. They propose that using an
activity monitoring device like Fitbit will empower and allow patients to
self-manage their lower back pain with a special activity program designed just
for them using today’s new mobile health technology. (1) So what do you think?
Will it work? Soft Health and Healing Clinic looks forward to the study outcomes and enjoys
seeing current Brooks chiropractic
patients using these units to keep active, to challenge themselves to reach that certain
Are they valid? Do they really track what we are doing reliably? Two
such exercise monitoring devices - Fitbit and Jawbone – were evaluated by a
group of researchers. (2) Soft Health and Healing Clinic
sees quite a few of these little devices on our Brooks chiropractic
patients’ wrists. (Now, be honest, how many people in your circle of Brooks
friends and family got one of these as a gift? They were popular over the holidays!)
These researchers found 22 studies to review about these units. Overall, tracking of the number of steps is
highly valid while sleep and energy expenditure measurements are lower. Specifically,
the Fitbit overestimated distance at slower speed and underestimated at faster
speed. (Brooks chiropractic clients who walk will like this! And
that’s all Soft Health and Healing Clinic often recommends…just walk.) Fitbit to Fitbit comparison
showed that it is consistently made to measure the same from unit to unit. One
study had participants wear two of them at a time to check this out! Both types
of devices tended to underestimate energy expenditure and overestimate total
sleep time and sleep efficiency. (2)
Which is better? Another study compared 10 different trackers and found
that Fitbit Zip is the most valid and Nike+ Fuelband was low in reliability and
validity. (3) And these types of units encouraged high levels of sustained
self-monitoring over a 16 week study. Now, the researchers wonder how to keep
this involvement long-term. That could potentially lead to chronic disease
prevention! (4) Extra, encouraging texts (SMS) didn’t seem to help much in one
study which was designed to help overweight and obese people be more active. (5)
Would Brooks chiropractic patients like them? For
post-menopausal women with body mass indices over 25, these trackers with an
associated website helped increase their physical activity. These women wore
the trackers 95% of the time. 96% of them liked the website, and 100% like the
tracker! (6) Those are high percentages! Soft Health and Healing Clinic would certainly
encourage any Brooks chiropractic patient who is ready to be more
active to try one out.
So contact Soft Health and Healing Clinic when back pain is a pain, and try out one of
today’s tracking apps and devices to see if it’ll inspire you to be active. It
just may boost your Brooks chiropractic clinical outcome!