Man dressed in black running through a park, looking at his wrist activity tracker.

Five Reasons to Ditch the Activity Tracker and Get a Step Counter

While activity trackers are popular, there is a common misconception that they are an essential piece of equipment if you want to see results, which could not be further from the truth.

Did you know that walking is one of the most effective yet often underrated exercises you can do to reach your fitness goals. It is free to do and just 30 minutes of walking per day is enough to feel its benefits, which include improving heart health, reducing stress, burning fat, strengthening your bones and improving your mental and physical health.

To get the most out of walking, step counters are essential. These devices motivate you to walk more as they accurately measure your daily steps without having you worry about other metrics, which often distract you from your goals.

Activity trackers, on the other hand, are wearable devices usually worn on your wrist that monitor various aspects of your health, such as heart rate, calories burned, sleep patterns and steps taken.

One of the best ways to keep you motivated to walk more is by using a step counter. Here are five reasons to ditch the activity tracker and get yourself a step counter instead: 


Step counters are far more affordable than activity trackers and you can get a reliable, accurate one for under $30. A good quality activity tracker will set you back in excess of $70 with some even in the $300+ range. If you’re one that pays attention to a lot of metrics, and can afford it, then perhaps you are better off with an advanced tracker, but most people use Daily Steps as the most important metric which is precisely what a step counter is for. 


This is a point that can cause a lot of debate as many of us think the more expensive or well known a device is, the more accurate it must be. There is no way for any device to accurately measure every single step taken by an individual during the course of the day, but quality step counters now have far more advanced sensors that reduce the number of “false steps” recorded making them a lot more accurate than some give credit for. In many instances, step counters are more accurate than activity trackers when counting steps because activity trackers can register arm and hand movements as steps during the day leading to a higher step count.

Motivates you to walk more

The benefits of walking everyday include maintaining a healthy weight, improving cardiovascular fitness, strengthening bones and muscles and improving your mental health. Step counters are excellent devices for motivating you to walk more as they accurately measure your daily step counts without having you worry about all the other less important metrics. 

No Data Sharing

Step counters count and display your steps, that’s it! There is no gathering of personal data, and so no risk of any of your personal information being stolen or shared online. The data captured by activity trackers is very personal to you and can give a huge amount of information about you to strangers online if it were leaked. It is also worth noting that depending on what brand you use, you may not be the owner of the data you generate! 

Battery Life

Step Counters usually tend to have up to 12 months of uninterrupted battery life before a new battery is needed. This is great if you just want to go about your daily routines without having to stress about recharging. How frustrating can it be when you’re wanting to head out for the day and you notice that your activity tracker’s battery is low? 

Bonus Points:

Screen Size

The majority of the simple step counters available come with a large LCD display making it easy to track your progress with a quick glance and making it an ideal choice for seniors. Modern activity trackers are designed to be as light and compact as possible resulting in many having small screens.  

Doesn’t miscount calories

Many activity tracker users pay attention to calories burned but research has shown that activity trackers are not accurate when it comes to measuring this metric. Although they can give you a guideline of activity level they should not be used as the only source of truth when it comes to monitoring your calories burned.