How to select the type of pedometer

If human muscles are not used, they will deteriorate. For employees working in the nursing home field, managing residents' exercise is an important part of their job. To ensure that residents are exercising appropriately according to their health status and age, numerical goals are necessary.

What is a pedometer?

A pedometer, or step-counter, is a health aid that counts the number of steps taken, but recently it has also been installed as a function of mobile phones and smartphones. Pedometers can also be selected based on their step counting method, wearing method, built-in functions, and the number of memories they have.

Select by step counting method

Two types of pedometers have become mainstream: the pendulum method, which counts the number of steps taken by opening and closing a built-in electric switch by vertical vibration when walking, and the 3D acceleration sensor method, which counts the number of steps by measuring acceleration in the vertical and horizontal directions. Incidentally, a pedometer that measures acceleration only in the vertical direction is called an acceleration sensor system.

3D acceleration sensor


In addition to the vertical direction, it is a method that can count the number of steps more accurately by measuring horizontal movement with a sensor. The greatest advantage of the 3D acceleration sensor method is that you don't have to stick to the way you wear it. Whether it's in a pocket of clothes or a bag, as long as you carry it with you, it will measure accurately no matter how you hold it. Machines equipped with 3D acceleration sensors are also excellent in that they can be easily equipped with additional functions.

Pendulum method


Since the built-in electrical switch physically opens and closes to count the number of steps taken, it must be worn accurately. If the device is not worn on the wrist, waist, or any other part of the body that moves when walking, it may not measure accurately. Because it is easy to use and does not require batteries, it is a convenient item for those who want to measure their steps casually.

Select by wearing method

Pedometers can be selected based on how they are worn.

Bracelet type


This type is worn on the wrist like a wristwatch. This type is often seen in pendulum pedometers and is fixed with velcro or other means. It is easy to handle because it can be easily removed, but some people may find it itchy or constrictive.

Waist type


This type is used by clipping the pedometer to a belt with a clip attached to the back of the pedometer. This type is also often seen in pendulum type pedometers. It is recommended for people who usually wear a belt, as it is easy to put on and take off and does not impose a burden on the wearer. But it may be difficult for women and care recipients who are wearing sleepwear to use this type.

Pocket type


The 3D acceleration sensor type can be placed in a pocket, pouch, or anywhere. It is very easy to use because the number of steps can be measured even if the caregiver, rather than the person requiring care, wears the device and walks together. Also, since it measures even the slightest movement, it is suitable for use in rehabilitation and other applications.

Select from other functions

Additional functions such as heart rate and blood pressure

Some pedometers with 3D acceleration sensors have a variety of additional functions. Heart rate, blood pressure, and other functions are very convenient because they allow the care recipient to exercise while checking his or her health status at every step. Exercise data can also be individually managed by transferring it to a dedicated application.

Data retention period (memory)

Pedometers also offer a choice of data retention period. Some pedometers offer memory periods of 7, 14, and 30 days, as well as the ability to store data for the same day only. Some pedometers’ data can be transferred to an application to keep a semi-permanent record.


In the field of nursing care, it is necessary to provide an individualized program of exercise according to the condition of the person requiring nursing care. With a pedometer, the amount of exercise can be converted into data, and it is possible to grasp the appropriate amount of exercise even if multiple caregivers take turns. Pedometers vary in installation location, additional functions, and step counting methods, so it is necessary to select the most appropriate pedometer, taking the condition of the caregiver and ease of use into consideration.