In 2015, another study, the PACE-Lift trial, was also inconclusive. Researchers randomly assigned 250 people ages 60 to 75 to one of two groups. The first group received four physical activity consultations from primary care nurses over three months; a pedometer; and a physical activity diary. The other received “usual care.” All patients were given accelerometers to measure their activity, although only the control group saw the results. One year later, those in the pedometer group were taking an average of about 600 more steps per day, and had about 40 more minutes of activity a week… More at NYT.
I guess that conclusion makes perfect sense. Just like weighing scales do not make you lighter, it is actually doing something that makes the difference. What fitness devices are good at, however, is making you think about your health in the first place and giving you small bits of encouragement as you see improvements being made.