International Journal of Exercise Science 9(3): 258-269, 2016. Self-monitoring is a widely recommended behavioral strategy to promote regular physical activity. Commercially available activity monitors are becoming increasingly popular and provide users with the opportunity to self-monitor physical activity. The purpose of this study was to examine the ability of the Basis Band Fitness Tracker to measure heart rate and movement compared to research-grade activity monitors. Twenty participants (14 females and 6 males) aged 18-23 yrs (mean = 20.0 ± 1.1 yrs) wore a Basis Band, an NL-1000 pedometer, an ANT+ Motorola HRM1G chest strap heart rate monitor, and an Actigraph GT3X+ accelerometer for one day (at least 6 hours). A total of 3,060 matched heart rate observations were evaluated (1,144 minutes in sedentary behavior, 1,473 minutes in light physical activity, and 443 minutes in moderate-to vigorous physical activity [MVPA]). Although the Basis Band captured 90% of heart rates during sedentary conditions, heart rates were unlikely to be recorded during movement of light intensity (51%) and MVPA (20%). Concurrent validity evidence for heart rate from the Basis Band compared to a chest-worn monitor was low overall (R = 0.78) and lower during light intensity (R = 0.63) and MVPA (R = 0.63). The Basis Band accurately measured steps during 100-step running trials with natural running arm movement (mean difference = 1.4 steps, mean absolute percent error [MAPE] = 4.8%) and with limited arm movement (mean difference = -1.1 steps, MAPE = 4.1%), but not during slow walking trials with natural walking arm movement (mean difference = -56.8 steps, MAPE = 57.1%) and with limited arm movement (mean difference = -53.2 steps, MAPE = 53.8%) or brisk walking trials with natural walking arm movement (mean difference = 11.3 steps, MAPE = 11.4%). MAPE was low (3.7%) during the brisk walking trials with natural walking arm movement. The Basis Band significantly underestimated number of daily steps compared to the NL-1000 pedometer (mean difference = -1,155, p < .001, MAPE = 15.0%). Unacceptable validity evidence for heart rate measures and steps, combined with a low proportion of heart rates recorded, suggest the Basis Band does not accurately quantify heart rate or physical activity.
Desilets, Pier-Alexandre and Mahar, Matthew T.
"Evaluation of the Basis Band Fitness Tracker,"
International Journal of Exercise Science: Vol. 9
Available at: http://digitalcommons.wku.edu/ijes/vol9/iss3/2