In the recent past, fitness trackers were only known for calculating the steps through the day. Nevertheless, with the ever advancing technology, these elegant devices have grown into complex devices that give so much information about the user.
It is effectively used to monitor heart rate (HR), monitor sleep, calculate the distance covered body temperature and keep track of calories among other functions. It is a simple device with easy connectivity.
To most people, how this device works has remained a nightmare. It has been a challenge to many users and some of them end up using it in a wrong way. We are going to discuss and see how the fitness tracker works.
How Fitness Tracker Works?
For us to understand how a fitness tracker works, we consider a very important question. What is inside a fitness tracker? This device is made of different features that enables it to work effectively as directed.
Fitness trackers contain imperative sensors that work together to give the needed information. These include;
- Skin response sensor
- Heart rate monitor
- UV sensors
1. Heart rate
For a very long time, heart- rate is known to be measured by health practioner with Electrocardiogram (EKG) which measures the heart’s electrical activity.
Fitness tracker has a Light Emitting Diode (LED), which is an electrical component which produces light once current run through it.
Once the light is emitted, some of it is absorbed by the blood while the rest bounces back. The amount of light that is absorbed is directly proportional with the amount of blood.
Since the volume of the blood varies during the rhythmic expansion and contraction of the heart, the elegant device is able to monitor the heart rate using a sensor that checks up the reflected light. This variation in the light reflected is decoded into heart rate.
As the word suggests, this component measures acceleration force (Fa). It also measures the orientation . This allows it to detect movement and inclination which complements counting steps.
A number of them have two axis sensors whereas others have 3 axis which allows them to measure the position in 3D. Some of the accelerometers are digital while others are analogue.
Additionally, it allows the tracker to monitor your sleep. This is done by monitoring the movements during sleep which is later decoded into sleep data.
3. Global Positioning System (GPS)
This is a space direction-finding system that presents the location of objects on or in the vicinity of the surface of the earth. It helps to effectively locate the position of objects around the earth.
For the precise location of an object or an individual to be given, one has to be in range of at least 4 of the 29 satellites moving round the earth. Time taken by the signal to reach the user is interpreted into the distance from it.
Global Positioning System module consumes little energy. This implies that a smaller battery will serve you for a longer period of time. Additionally, for people doing regular exercises like cycling, they are able to map their paths and keep a record of the same.
4. UV and Ambient light Sensors
If you have a fitness tracker, it may have at one moment warned you to get out of the sun. It has a mechanism that simply detects when the sun is too hot for you. Here, we look at the component behind this.
Ultraviolet (UV) is a non visible light, with wavelength shorter than that of visible light but longer than that of X-rays. Research has shown that this light exposes one to the risk of skin cancer among other health effects.
The UV sensor in the fitness band detects the intensity of this light around you and compares the value with the value that is considered to be harmful.
Since UV light is present in sunlight, the fitness tracker is more likely to warn you to move out of very hot sun. however, it is not limited to this as it can detect ultraviolet light from other sources.
Additionally, it has an ambient light sensor which senses the light that is visible to the eye. This makes it dim or brighten the screen when it is too bright or it is dark respectively. This stylish device uses the same for sensing the time of the day.
5. Skin response sensor
The skin response sensor in a fitness tracker measures the electrical conductivity of the skin. It is made of features that have abilities to detect everything about the skin and what happens to the body.
When one begins to sweat, either due to exercise, sickness or from arousal, the skin becomes a better conductor hence it is able to detect your activity. It will also be able to tell when you are sweating from exercise or it is a health issue.
From the foregoing discussion, it is clear that a fitness tracker is an all in one device. It is designed with expertise from different fields making it serve so many purposes at the same time.
It makes use of complex sensors, yet translating it into a language that is simple, clear and to the point. As a matter of fact, it is a lab in motion that monitors body’s activities to uphold health.
This is a simple device used by many people in tracking their daily activities. Majority of users are pleased with the device and it is the one recommended by many people because of its effectiveness.