Maximize your workout with your smartphone
Using a smartphone to talk or text during exercise can cause a reduction in intensity, but listening to music makes the workout more enjoyable and productive, according to a recent study.
Kent State University researchers put 44 students to the test. The students participated in four sets of 30-minute workouts on a treadmill, testing out three uses of smartphones – music, talking and texting – as well as having no access to their smartphones.
Through assessment of average treadmill speed, heart rate and enjoyment of each exercise session, the researchers determined:
- Listening to music on the smartphone increases all three assessment measures.
- Talking increases enjoyment, maintains heart rate and reduces treadmill speed compared to not using a smartphone.
- Texting lowers the treadmill speed and heart rate, but does not affect enjoyment.
“We observe a lot of members using their smartphones while working out,” says Kimberly Smith, membership services director at Advocate Condell Medical Center’s Centre Club in Libertyville, Ill. “Our personal trainers agree, workout intensity definitely decreases while texting or talking on their phones.”
Instead of texting or talking on the phone while exercising, Smith suggests having working out with more than one person. Smartphone fitness apps such as Garmin, myfitnesspal or Nike+ may also motivate people who cannot detach themselves from their phones.
“Fitness is personal,” Smith says. “You have to find what works for you and your body.”
About the Author
health enews staff is a group of experienced writers from our Advocate Aurora Health sites, which also includes freelance or intern writers.