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Laura Loves…Fitbit

Fitbit

I am loving the latest addition from Fitbit, the Fitbit Ace. 

This is the first wearable from the fitness-tracking experts that is solely dedicated to youngsters from around aged eight upwards. 

It’s a great tool to promote fitness and keeping active with children in a logical and fun way.

Fitbit kindly sent us an Ace for Grace and a Charge2 for me to enjoy getting active and motivated together, so my daughter and I willingly took on the challenge to reach our step targets each day and try pushing ourselves more over the summer to get outdoors and move more.

To date we have actually had a lot of fun with it as we compete to do the most steps against each other in a day and it has become quite the bonding experience. 

You’d think as an adult I’d have this in the bag, but have you seen how active a youngster on summer break is?!

Because of this reason, this often results in me going for an evening walk having spent the majority of the day at my desk working so it definitely has gotten me thinking more about how much I do (or don’t in my case!) to move and stretch my body.

 

Fitbit Ace

Primarily, the Fitbit Ace is a device set to track daily movement activity and keep kids motivated to reach the target of 60 minutes activity each day. 

This doesn’t mean intense scrutiny running laps, high endurance routines or anything too exhausting. 

It’s more about getting them out and about, having fun, enjoying the great outdoors and then in the evening Grace liked to see how the day compared to others. 

It also provides information based on their sleep patterns, which Grace loves to read with fascination and has been quite the education for us both.

The Fitbit Ace is in essence a smaller version of the popular adult band.  

The wristband features plenty of flex and strength so is good for smaller wrists. 

It is also splash proof; I am not convinced a younger child would be aware of all of the responsibilities of maintaining technology to it’s full extent so this layer of protection is very much welcomed.

The Ace also maintains battery power for up to five days, again good for responsibility without it being too intense.

All of the data is clocked up on the app similarly to the Charge2. 

Ultimately, the parents are in control of the account, producing individual profiles for the child and this then enables you to check privacy settings and monitor their activity aside from what they are able to view. 

It’s worth noting that there’s no information on calories for the children, I was fearful it could promote a negative pressure to exercise but that’s so far removed, it’s really not a concern.

It’s not all one sided though, children can access a condensed version of their account which is really kid-friendly. 

There are a lot of fun animations with challenges, badges and celebratory messages to keep exercise fun and excited and this is what it is all about.

My kids are at the younger end of the scale for the Ace, as they get older the features such as the messages and commenting on their friend’s linked accounts can be an extra push to motivate themselves.

 

FitBit Charge2

I’ve never owned a Fitbit before.  I do have my smartwatch, but it’s more about access to texts, emails and phone calls so the focus was never on my fitness levels. 

The Charge2 is the latest from Fitbit and while they’ve been making gradual improvements along the way, I have to admit I’m a little bit smug about having held off the urge to delve into fitness wearables and now have such an enhanced piece of kit.

The look and feel is absolutely top notch. 

I was lucky enough to get my hands on a limited edition rose gold/grey version so very classy paired with the sleek, sporty design. 

Its functionality is honestly too much to list, but some key elements for me is the precision on the activity tracking (steps, calories, floors climbed and more), sleep monitoring and the breathing sessions.

As a busy parent, it’s all the detail you never get the time or opportunity to track yourself.  It’s a fantastic aid to guide yourself back to pre-pregnancy fitness without the intimidation of the gym or personal trainer. 

Chasing after the kids, pushing the pushchair etc are all activity and actually taking stock of this information is really useful.

The Guided Breathing Sessions are more about finding some calm amidst the madness. 

Tracking your real-time heart rate, the short sessions of mindfulness are simple and can be done anyway you can take a seat. 

Getting in tune with your breathing can help to reduce stress, anxiety and lower your blood pressure. 

Aside from the health benefits I found the prompt to take five minutes out of my busy day a highlight in itself.

We both really enjoyed the Fitbits. 

The key feature for me was the data insight it provides to allow you to think and take actions based on this about your own fitness/activity, and this is a good awareness whatever the age. 

Youngsters will be thinking more about how many challenges they’ve completed, and as an adult I was thinking more about how my health and wellbeing. 

I must admit that having a youngster joining me (and putting me to shame!) is the kick up the bum I have needed to motivate myself more to get fit.

For more information on Fitbit visit https://www.fitbit.com/uk/home.  

 

Published: 31 July 2018

 

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