The Reading / Listening - Fitness Trackers - Level 5

A new report says fitness trackers don't measure the calories our body burns while exercising so accurately. This means people may make poor decisions about their diet. The study, from Stanford University, evaluated five popular trackers. These included the Apple Watch, Fitbit Surge and Samsung Gear S2. The researchers observed 60 volunteers as they walked, ran and cycled with the devices. Researchers found that none of the devices had an error rate below 20 per cent. Dr Euan Ashley said: "People need to know that on energy expenditure, [the trackers] give rough estimates."



The scientists said users of fitness trackers should be careful about using the devices to judge what they eat. Dr Ashley said: "If you go to the gym, and you think you've lost 400 calories, then you might feel you've got 400 calories to play with." This could be a problem for people who decide what to eat after reading fitness tracker data. A CEO of a fitness tracker company told the USA Today newspaper that the study method could have used incorrect settings and thus given incorrect data. He said the study's error rate was wrong because of a "methodological error" in the research.

Try the same news story at these levels:

    Fitness Trackers - Level 4 or  Fitness Trackers - Level 6

Sources
  • http://www.bbc.com/news/health-40030457
  • https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/nation-now/2017/05/24/your-fitness-tracker-could-way-way-off/342327001/
  • http://www.livescience.com/59242-how-accurate-is-your-fitness-tracker-really.html


Make sure you try all of the online activities for this reading and listening - There are dictations, multiple choice, drag and drop activities, crosswords, hangman, flash cards, matching activities and a whole lot more. Please enjoy :-)



Phrase Matching

Paragraph 1

  1. the calories our body burns
  2. make poor decisions
  3. The researchers observed
  4. walked, ran and cycled
  5. none of the devices
  6. an error rate below
  7. energy
  8. give rough
  1. with the devices
  2. expenditure
  3. had
  4. estimates
  5. about their diet
  6. 60 volunteers
  7. 20 per cent
  8. while exercising

Paragraph 2

  1. users
  2. be careful
  3. judge what
  4. you've got 400
  5. decide what to
  6. study
  7. could have used incorrect
  8. a "methodological error"
  1. calories to play with
  2. they eat
  3. method
  4. eat
  5. of fitness trackers
  6. in the research
  7. about using the devices
  8. settings

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

A new report says fitness trackers (1) ___________________ calories our body burns while exercising (2) ___________________. This means people may make poor decisions about their diet. The study, from Stanford University, (3) ___________________ popular trackers. These included the Apple Watch, Fitbit Surge and Samsung Gear S2. The researchers observed 60 volunteers (4) ___________________, ran and cycled with the devices. Researchers found that (5) ___________________ devices had an error rate below 20 per cent. Dr Euan Ashley said: "People need to know that on energy expenditure, [the trackers] (6) ___________________."

The scientists (7) ___________________ fitness trackers should be careful about using the devices (8) ___________________ they eat. Dr Ashley said: "If you go to the gym, and (9) ___________________ lost 400 calories, then you might feel you've got 400 calories to play with." This could be a problem for people who (10) ___________________ after reading fitness tracker data. A CEO of a fitness tracker company told the USA Today newspaper that the study method (11) ___________________ incorrect settings and thus given incorrect data. He said the study's error (12) ___________________ because of a "methodological error" in the research.

Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

Anewreportsaysfitnesstrackersdon'tmeasurethecaloriesourbodybu
rnswhileexercisingsoaccurately.Thismeanspeoplemaymakepoorde
cisionsabouttheirdiet.Thestudy,fromStanfordUniversity,evaluatedfi
vepopulartrackers.TheseincludedtheAppleWatch,FitbitSurgeandSa
msungGearS2.Theresearchersobserved60volunteersastheywalked
,ranandcycledwiththedevices.Researchersfoundthatnoneofthedevi
ceshadanerrorratebelow20percent.DrEuanAshleysaid:"Peopleneed
toknowthatonenergyexpenditure,[thetrackers]giveroughestimates
."Thescientistssaidusersoffitnesstrackersshouldbecarefulaboutusin
gthedevicestojudgewhattheyeat.DrAshleysaid:"Ifyougotothegym,
andyouthinkyou'velost400calories,thenyoumightfeelyou'vegot400
caloriestoplaywith."Thiscouldbeaproblemforpeoplewhodecidewhatt
oeatafterreadingfitnesstrackerdata.ACEOofafitnesstrackercompan
ytoldtheUSATodaynewspaperthatthestudymethodcouldhaveusedin
correctsettingsandthusgivenincorrectdata.Hesaidthestudy'serrorra
tewaswrongbecauseofa"methodologicalerror"intheresearch.

Student survey

Write five GOOD questions about this topic in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper. When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

(Please look at page 12 of the PDF to see a photocopiable example of this activity.)

Discussion — Write your own questions

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

(a) ________________

(b) ________________

(c) ________________

(d) ________________

(e) ________________

(f) ________________

(g) ________________

(h) ________________

STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

(i) ________________

(j) ________________

(k) ________________

(l) ________________

(m) ________________

(n) ________________

(o) ________________

(p) ________________





Free writing

Write about this topic for 10 minutes. Comment on your partner’s paper.

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Answers

(Please check your answers against the article above.

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