Department of Family Medicine and Public Health, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, CA, United States
RMA DelaysOur Admin Portal website is currently experiencing technical difficulties, and it could result in delays with RMAs being processed. We are currently working to resolve these issues. We apologize for the inconvenience.
Join us on August 11th for an ActiGraph webinar hosted by Xtalks:
Oncology Research and Care: Reimagining Digital InnovationRegister Now
Patterns of Fitbit Use and Activity Levels Throughout a Physical Activity Intervention: Exploratory Analysis from a Randomized Controlled Trial
- Published on Feb 5, 2018
Background: There has been a rapid increase in the use of technology-based activity trackers to promote behavior change. However, little is known about how individuals use these trackers on a day-to-day basis or how tracker use relates to increasing physical activity.
Objective: The aims were to use minute level data collected from a Fitbit tracker throughout a physical activity intervention to examine patterns of Fitbit use and activity and their relationships with success in the intervention based on ActiGraph-measured moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA).
Methods: Participants included 42 female breast cancer survivors randomized to the physical activity intervention arm of a 12-week randomized controlled trial. The Fitbit One was worn daily throughout the 12-week intervention. ActiGraph GT3X+ accelerometer was worn for 7 days at baseline (prerandomization) and end of intervention (week 12). Self-reported frequency of looking at activity data on the Fitbit tracker and app or website was collected at week 12.
Results: Adherence to wearing the Fitbit was high and stable, with a mean of 88.13% of valid days over 12 weeks (SD 14.49%). Greater adherence to wearing the Fitbit was associated with greater increases in ActiGraph-measured MVPA (binteraction=0.35, P<.001). Participants averaged 182.6 minutes/week (SD 143.9) of MVPA on the Fitbit, with significant variation in MVPA over the 12 weeks (F=1.91, P=.04). The majority (68%, 27/40) of participants reported looking at their tracker or looking at the Fitbit app or website once a day or more. Changes in Actigraph-measured MVPA were associated with frequency of looking at one’s data on the tracker (b=−1.36, P=.07) but not significantly associated with frequency of looking at one’s data on the app or website (P=.36).
Conclusions: This is one of the first studies to explore the relationship between use of a commercially available activity tracker and success in a physical activity intervention. A deeper understanding of how individuals engage with technology-based trackers may enable us to more effectively use these types of trackers to promote behavior change.