How does Fitbit Count Steps? A Quick Guide

Fitbit wearables are the best fitness tracking devices and there is no doubt in that. These devices are versatile, and it is capable of tracking various activities from heart rate to steps. 

How does Fitbit Count Steps

But have you ever think about How does Fitbit Count Steps?

In this article, I will explain how wearable devices such as a smartwatch or fitness tracker track steps.

How does Fitbit Count Steps?

Fitbit uses senosors called 3-D accelerometer to track steps. But for accuracy, you must move your hands freely to track the steps accurately.

You might have heard about the pedometer that is used to track steps. A Fitbit also uses advanced pedometers that can track your steps accurately than a basic pedometer. 

To track steps, Fitbit uses advanced motion sensors called as 3-axis accelerometer. A 3D-Accelometer not only tracks your motion, but it also tracks the direction of motion. 

When you wear a Fitbit on your wrist, it senses your hand’s motion, and then it sends these movements to the advanced algorithm of Fitbit.

The Fitbit devices use advanced workout recognition feature called as SmartTrack. It continuously interprets the movements that are being sent by its sensors and automatically identify various activities like walking, running, biking, etc. based on the intensity of the movement. 

Fitbit Charge 4, Versa 2, Versa Lite, Fitbit Ionic, Inspire HR, etc. are the example of Fitbit with SmartTrack feature.

How accurate is Fitbit step tracking?

Many people commonly ask questions about Fitbit Accuracy. The accuracy of Fitbit depends on some external and internal factors. 

By internal factors, I mean the sensors that keep track of your every movement. We can not do anything much here to improve the accuracy of your Fitbit. In short words, a fitness tracker with an advanced sensor means more accuracy. 

However, some external factors or situations that impact the accuracy of Fitbit. Let us have a look into each so that you can avoid such situations. 

Not wearing the Fitbit Correctly

A Fitbit or other fitness tracker can not track your various activities, including steps, heart rate, etc, if you are not wearing it correctly. 

  • It must be wear on the top of your wrist for accurate tracking of heart rate, blood oxygen, and Fitbit Pay. 
  • It should not be too tight or too loose. It must be correctly fit on your wrist. 

Why Fitbit not counting steps while pushing stroller?

Lady with Stroller

Many of my readers have asked me this question multiple times. Another question is, does Fitbit Count Steps if Arms Aren’t Moving? 

The answer is the same in both conditions. Fitbit and other Fitness trackers fail to accurately track your steps while pulling a stroller or not moving your hands. 

In this case, you can either put it into your pocket or use a clip-on tracker or ankle based fitness tracker to track your steps. But if you are using a Fitbit as an ankle fitness tracker, the accuracy may vary as Fitbit devices are not designed and calibrated to use on your ankle or foot. 

For more clarity into this, you can do a self-experiment here. 

  • Sit on a chair wearing Fitbit on your wrist.
  • Check the number of steps displayed on the screen.
  • Now move your hands the same way as you do while walking for one minute. 
  • After one minute, recheck the steps counts on the display of your Fitbit. 
  • See the difference now. Fitbit has counted your hand movement as steps. 

From this small experiment, you now know that Fitbit tracks your steps based on your hand or body movement. 

That is why it is not tracking steps correctly while pulling a trolly or keeping your hands in pocket. 

So, the next time you go for a walk or run, make sure you move your hands freely. 

Does Fitbit track your steps on a treadmill?

I am sure that now you know the answer to this. Obviously, it does not track your steps correctly if you hold your hands on the bar because of the same reason that we have discussed above. 

See the above video to see the correct way to run on a treadmill to track steps accurately. She is nicely moving her hands so that the Fitbit does not have any problem in tracking her steps.

On the other hand, Fitbit will accurately track your distance and pace with the help of the in-built or connected GPS even when you are not moving the hands. However, the usage of GPS drains your battery faster.

Final Words

Now Fitness trackers and smartwatches have advanced sensors and technologies to track your various activities, including steps more accurately. However, it is essential to wear it correctly to track the steps accurately.

I think this article helped you understand how does Fitbit count steps and how to use it to track the steps accurately. If you have any queries or questions, please comment below or ask directly on our Facebook page. 

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