Where is the best place to wear my pedometer? This is a question that is asked often. There has been considerable discussion about this topic, but until a study was performed to find the answer to this question, the best place to wear the pedometer was a guess.
The latest pedometers are called “pocket pedometers” and the manufacturers claim that you can drop them in your pants pocket and they will perform very well. They can also be worn on your hip, around your neck, and in your shirt pocket.
A group of researchers designed an experiment to determine the accuracy of these new “pocket” pedometers. The article from the experiment stated, “The purpose of this investigation was to examine the validity of step counts measured with the Omron HJ-112 pedometer and to assess the effect of pedometer placement.”
The results of the experiment were published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: April 2009 – Volume 41 – Issue 4 – pp 805-809. The article is entitled Validity of the Omron HJ-112 Pedometer during Treadmill Walking.
The study used ninety-two subjects (44 males and 48 females); 71 with a varying body mass index [BMI].
The placement of the pedometer made a difference as follows:
- Hip mounting produced the smallest random error (1.2%)
- Shirt pocket was next (1.7%)
- Hanging around the neck (2.2%)
- In the pants pocket (5.8%).
The conclusion of the study was “The Omron HJ-112 pedometer validly assesses steps in different BMI groups during constant- and variable-speed walking; other than that in the pants pocket, placement of the pedometer has little effect on validity.”
So next time you get ready to head out on your walk, remember that your pedometer will record the most accurate results if you have it attached to your waist band or your belt on your hip. The study indicated that a “pocket” pedometer did not measure most accurately in your pocket.
For more information about best pedometers, read the resource information at the end of this article.