Fitbit Blaze Activity Tracker

The Fitbit Blaze is a multi-function activity tracker that has the look and feel of an actual watch with multiple styles of wristbands available. The smart watch counts steps, has continuous heart rate monitoring, tracks sleep quality, distance, calories burned, floors climbed active minutes and other activity based features. With a large color screen the device is easier to read than other fitness trackers for an elder.

HOW IT WORKS

The value for elders living in the community is the ability to send health data to an online portal through a paired bluetooth device. This information can then be viewed (with permission) by family to identify trends and catch out of the ordinary flags such as low activity levels, irregular sleep patterns or high heart rates associated with what should be low-stress activities. The online dashboard can be setup with other family or friends in the same group to offer encouragement or even competition as motivation to keep moving and activity levels up.

All an elder has to do is wear the watch after it has been set up. The potential issue is ensuring that the watch’s battery is charged up every few days. It has an advertised five days of battery life under normal usage.

Manufacturer’s Video

REAL WORLD USE CASES

Some ways Fitbit Blaze could be configured for the safety of an elderly person in the community:

  • Schedule notifications sent to the watch from a paired smartphone can act as medication reminders.
  • Overall activity levels can be shared on an online dashboard to trigger a ‘check-in’ if a senior’s activity drops compared to their normal levels.
  • Heart rate tracking can be viewed by a family member (with permission) to observe if the normal pattern is off or identify that everyday activities are causing a high level of stress and exertion for an elder. This could trigger an intervention with their doctor before an unplanned event such as a fall.
  • Sleep tracking can identify if someone’s overnight pattern changes from sleeping through the night to being up multiple times. This can trigger night time safety devices such as automatic lighting or even to have their physician review if recent medication changes caused a change to an elder’s sleep pattern.

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