Musicians and fitness bands

brtgl
brtgl Posts: 129 Member
Keyboards players, drummers, etc. who use fitness bands for steps... do you remove your fitness band when you're playing music for an extended period of time so you don't get inaccurate counts?

Replies

  • springlering62
    springlering62 Posts: 7,403 Member
    That’s a very interesting question.

    I’m an Apple Watch user.

    I once got 40,000+ “steps” on an international flight, because I was crocheting throughout much of the flight. Similar but not as manic results while crocheting at home. Crochet involves frequent twists of the wrist I wear my watch on. (YMMV because I wear my watch on my dominant hand.)

    Yet using a computer keyboard or doing needlework doesn’t yield the same results. I’ve done a couple hours of needlework this morning and haven’t picked up a single step per my watch. Needlework is more up and down arms without the exaggerated wrist movement crochet requires.

    I think it would be cool to see how it would work for a drummer. There’s set drumming, concert and corps style drumming. Seems like there’d be a vast difference in how the fitness device would respond to the movements, and also to the actual percussive impact.

    It seems keyboards would be very similar to needlework in that it’s more straight arm movements, and then finger movements? I don’t play keyboards, so it’s outside of my ken.

  • Duck_Puddle
    Duck_Puddle Posts: 3,224 Member
    I am a classical musician (string player) and I have worn my trackers on my left and right wrists at various times. I do not take them off when I play-not even for something like Les Mis (which is a solid 3+ hours of playing with no breaks in between songs, no dialogue, a few measures of rest here and there, but it’s a haul).

    I don’t care about step count so much. I typically care more about the calorie estimates. Those don’t seem wildly affected even if the step counts might be (but I assume this is because the tracker may register a step but the “distance” is minimal). But the step counts don’t get too crazy regardless of whether I wear It on my bow hand or left hand, or whether I’m shifting or whatever. I do not do a lot of swaying/body moving when I play.
  • penguinmama87
    penguinmama87 Posts: 1,158 Member
    I am a classical musician (string player) and I have worn my trackers on my left and right wrists at various times. I do not take them off when I play-not even for something like Les Mis (which is a solid 3+ hours of playing with no breaks in between songs, no dialogue, a few measures of rest here and there, but it’s a haul).

    I don’t care about step count so much. I typically care more about the calorie estimates. Those don’t seem wildly affected even if the step counts might be (but I assume this is because the tracker may register a step but the “distance” is minimal). But the step counts don’t get too crazy regardless of whether I wear It on my bow hand or left hand, or whether I’m shifting or whatever. I do not do a lot of swaying/body moving when I play.

    This is kind of how I think about it. I'm not a musician, but I do a lot of stationary work with my hands every day. So, I'm standing, but I'm also constantly moving a little bit. Even if every step counted isn't actually a step, having the tracker account for all that movement hopefully gives me a fairly accurate calorie burn (it seems to so far!)
  • YellowD0gs
    YellowD0gs Posts: 693 Member
    I'm not a musician. My Garmin thinks I climb about 25 flights of stairs a day going up, and about 39 flights going down. Every day. There's not a single staircase in my life; not at home, or work, or church, or any building I commonly visit. I think I've deduced that when I'm walking, i am also usually carrying something (pen, water bottle, etc.) and holding my banded arm in "that" position one usually does when climbing a flight of stairs. I'm not sure if those steps get counted as stairs... something else about Garmin to think about.
  • yirara
    yirara Posts: 9,388 Member
    YellowD0gs wrote: »
    I'm not a musician. My Garmin thinks I climb about 25 flights of stairs a day going up, and about 39 flights going down. Every day. There's not a single staircase in my life; not at home, or work, or church, or any building I commonly visit. I think I've deduced that when I'm walking, i am also usually carrying something (pen, water bottle, etc.) and holding my banded arm in "that" position one usually does when climbing a flight of stairs. I'm not sure if those steps get counted as stairs... something else about Garmin to think about.

    Wow, that's really bad! How old is your tracker? It's possible that it's using a barometric altimeter to determine steps climbed. If so then you might have some really freakish microclimates in your home! The only solution to this problem is probably to take off the tracker, run to the next skyscraper, climb the appropriate number of floors, return home, put the tracker on again.
  • ExistingFish
    ExistingFish Posts: 1,259 Member
    I am not a musician. I found when I had a baby and I would rock the baby and pat their back it counted as steps...I found it amusing.
  • heybales
    heybales Posts: 18,842 Member
    brtgl wrote: »
    Keyboards players, drummers, etc. who use fitness bands for steps... do you remove your fitness band when you're playing music for an extended period of time so you don't get inaccurate counts?

    As it's been mentioned - you may get extra steps, but if you create an Activity Record for a chunk of time you were playing (it's not creating a workout, but a snapshot of the stats seen during the time) - you'll likely find the distance is barely anything and therefore the calories is barely anything above normal resting.

    And I wouldn't be surprised, lower calorie burn than the METS database would suggest for drumming - you'll probably be underestimated for burn.
  • hipari
    hipari Posts: 1,367 Member
    My Fitbit frequently thinks I’m swimming if I try on a lot of clothes when I go shopping or clean my wardrobe and try things on.
    YellowD0gs wrote: »
    I'm not a musician. My Garmin thinks I climb about 25 flights of stairs a day going up, and about 39 flights going down. Every day. There's not a single staircase in my life; not at home, or work, or church, or any building I commonly visit. I think I've deduced that when I'm walking, i am also usually carrying something (pen, water bottle, etc.) and holding my banded arm in "that" position one usually does when climbing a flight of stairs. I'm not sure if those steps get counted as stairs... something else about Garmin to think about.

    My old Fitbit used to think I climbed a lot of flights of stairs every day when standing on an escalator to get out of the subway (the station I use is really, really deep underground, under 2 floors of underground shopping mall, an underground parking garage and a full-scale bomb/nuclear shelter. Yeah, the area was originally built during the cold war. It takes 5 escalators or 2 elevators to get from the train platform to fresh outdoor air.)
  • Duck_Puddle
    Duck_Puddle Posts: 3,224 Member
    I am a classical musician (string player) and I have worn my trackers on my left and right wrists at various times. I do not take them off when I play-not even for something like Les Mis (which is a solid 3+ hours of playing with no breaks in between songs, no dialogue, a few measures of rest here and there, but it’s a haul).

    I don’t care about step count so much. I typically care more about the calorie estimates. Those don’t seem wildly affected even if the step counts might be (but I assume this is because the tracker may register a step but the “distance” is minimal). But the step counts don’t get too crazy regardless of whether I wear It on my bow hand or left hand, or whether I’m shifting or whatever. I do not do a lot of swaying/body moving when I play.

    This is kind of how I think about it. I'm not a musician, but I do a lot of stationary work with my hands every day. So, I'm standing, but I'm also constantly moving a little bit. Even if every step counted isn't actually a step, having the tracker account for all that movement hopefully gives me a fairly accurate calorie burn (it seems to so far!)

    Exactly. I typically get 50-150 calories per hour over what my resting rate would be. That varies considerably depending on what I’m playing. That doesn’t seem unreasonable for the amount of moving I’m actually doing, and it has worked for me for almost a decade. So I’m good with how it’s working.

  • Duck_Puddle
    Duck_Puddle Posts: 3,224 Member
    hipari wrote: »
    My Fitbit frequently thinks I’m swimming if I try on a lot of clothes when I go shopping or clean my wardrobe and try things on.
    YellowD0gs wrote: »
    I'm not a musician. My Garmin thinks I climb about 25 flights of stairs a day going up, and about 39 flights going down. Every day. There's not a single staircase in my life; not at home, or work, or church, or any building I commonly visit. I think I've deduced that when I'm walking, i am also usually carrying something (pen, water bottle, etc.) and holding my banded arm in "that" position one usually does when climbing a flight of stairs. I'm not sure if those steps get counted as stairs... something else about Garmin to think about.

    My old Fitbit used to think I climbed a lot of flights of stairs every day when standing on an escalator to get out of the subway (the station I use is really, really deep underground, under 2 floors of underground shopping mall, an underground parking garage and a full-scale bomb/nuclear shelter. Yeah, the area was originally built during the cold war. It takes 5 escalators or 2 elevators to get from the train platform to fresh outdoor air.)

    Every time I eat, my Garmin thinks I’m on the elliptical and Fitbit thinks I’m swimming. I don’t eat THAT vigorously.