Monday, June 25, 2012

Bodymedia Armband

Last year I received a Bodymedia armband as a gift. The Bodymedia armband is a device that tracks the number of calories burned throughout each day, even during sleep.  Unfortunately, the Bodymedia armband is expensive, ranging from $179 to $199. The monthly cost for the “required” website subscription is $6.95, although the first three months of a subscription are free. Also available is a free application on your iphone or droid to view daily progress.  The Bodymedia device pops out of the armband and can be plugged it into a USB drive to sync with and the Bodymedia software. The software, called the “Activity Manager,” allows a user to set goals (i.e., how many calories you want to consume, how many you want to burn, how many steps you want to take, etc.).  Additionally, a user can enter the foods consumed through the day into the food log via phone or computer, as well as check to see if the calorie goals have been met.  Calorie counting and food tracking takes some additional effort; consequently, the device can simply be used to monitor activity.  What I find annoying about the armband, however, is that it is supposed to be worn 23 hours a day. During the winter, this was not an issue, as it is covered by clothing. During summertime, however, it is a bit unsightly on exposed arms and leaves a tan line. Overall, this armband is a great motivational tool and I personally enjoy tracking my calories and setting goals for myself. It is certainly worth the money in my opinion.
Here are some sites about the Bodymedia armband:

How I would use this device in my class:
I think it would be very interesting to see how many calories an average middle school student burns in a 24-hour period. This device would help students become aware of their activity levels. The difficulty with the device is that it is cost-prohibitive to implement on a full-class scale.  Purchasing the device for all the students would run in the thousands.  Unless a grant to purchase the devices was provided, it is unlikely that the students will see any benefit that they have to offer.  That being said, perhaps a more practical approach would be to select three students out of my class (one with high activity, one with medium activity and one with low activity) and use the three as test subjects to see how many calories each of these students burn on an average in a week. I could compare these results and help students come up with individual goals and plans to increase or maintain their activity levels.


  1. Hey Shayna,
    This armband looks amazing. I see what you mean about the summer time being an issue. I definitely think some my students would have an issue wearing the armband if others coud see it. It sounds like a great tool to track calories and fitness routine. I love that it sets and keeps track of fitness goals. I think I might look into it more for myself even if it is pricey to use in the classroom.

  2. Last year I received a Bodymedia armband as a gift. ...