Wearable Technology May Inspire More Movement

Today’s high-tech fitness gadgets can help us walk the walk. Those who use wearable devices often work towards a daily steps goal which may prompt some to make small lifestyle changes like choosing stairs over the elevator or scheduling walking meetings during the work day.

Moving more can be associated with a multitude of health benefits. For example, a study from Harvard Medical School found walking for just 21 minutes a day can cut your risk of heart disease by 30 percent. Meeting that goal isn’t as easy as you may think. One bit of research from Science & Medicine found that people, tended to overestimate their weekly exercise by more than 50 minutes and underestimate sedentary time by more than two hours.

Wearable technology can help, and it’s becoming more popular every year. The wearable device market is expected to nearly quadruple by 2022 — from 118 million units in 2016 to 430 million — according to market intelligence company Tractica.

Even employers are following this trend. They have incorporated 13 million wearable and fitness devices into wellness programs, according to technology consultancy Endeavors Partners. These employer wellness programs are creating opportunities for people to monitor their physical activity while also offering incentives to meet certain fitness goals.

One such program is UnitedHealthcare Motion®Opens in a new tab, a national digital wellness program that provides eligible plan participants access to wearable technology that may enable them to earn more than $1,000 per year by meeting certain daily walking goals*. The program recently added the Apple Watch® as one of the options and eligible participants will be able to receive and start using Apple Watch (initially paying only tax and shipping), with the option to apply program earnings toward the full purchase price of the device.

If you’ve been wondering whether you’re getting enough movement to reap benefits such as increased energy and concentration, wearable technology may help you take those small steps to add more movement to your daily life.

 Apple® is a registered trademark of Apple, Inc.

*Financial incentives may be less due to limits under applicable laws.