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Best Fitbit for Seniors: A Complete Guide For The Elderly


Are you looking for the best Fitbit for seniors but can’t make up your mind as to which one to buy? Or maybe you already have an option in mind but you aren’t sure whether it can make the cut?

This guide is for you.

To be clear, the best Fitbit for seniors is one that has the right set of features for the elderly. It should count steps, track sleep, monitor heart rate, and even offer stress management. Also, the device should have a good battery life and be easy to use.

Apparently, the following models meet the above specifications:

 Fitbit Sense 2Fitbit Versa 3Fitbit Charge 5
fitbit sensefitbit versa 3fitbit charge 5
Activities TrackedSleep, calories, steps, real time pace and distance,Sleep, calories, steps, real time pace and distanceCalories, sleep, steps, real-time pace and distance, wellness trends
GPSBuilt-in GPSBuilt-in GPSBuilt-in GPS
Heart Rate24/7 heart rate monitor24/7 heart rate monitor24/7 heart rate monitor
Water ResistanceUp to 50 metersUp to 50 metersUp to 50 meters
StressStress management tools includedNot includedStress management tools included
NotificationsBluetooth calls, texts and phone alertsCalls, text, and app alertsCalls, calendar, text, and app alerts
Free Membership6 months of free premium membership6 months of free premium membership6 months of free premium membership
CompatibilityAndroid and iOSAndroid and iOSAndroid and iOS
Battery LifeUp to 6 daysUp to 6 daysUp to 7 days
 Get Fitbit Sense 2Get Fitbit Versa 3Get Fitbit Charge 5

How to Choose the Best Fitbit for Seniors

There’s usually a lot to look at when choosing a fitness tracker or a smartwatch. And there’s no exception when it comes to Fitbit models.

Because you want to end up with the really best Fitbit for older adults, it’s important that you consider the following selection criteria:  

1. Sleep Tracking

Sleep tracking is one of the top features that make Fitbit fitness trackers and smartwatches stand out from the crowd.

By using Fitbit’s sleep technology, you can know how long and how well you sleep every night.

And the Fitbit sleep insights that you get from the device can be incredibly useful in helping you to optimize your sleeping habits.

2. Heart Rate Monitor

The best Fitbit for seniors should have an optical heart rate sensor for the following reasons:

  • Heart rate helps you to understand your cardiovascular health and fitness level.
  • The data you get from the sensor can help you to determine how hard you should go on your workout, especially if you never want to stop exercising even at an old age.
  • Heart rate data is useful in determining how much calories you burn during workouts.

Keep in mind that older fitness trackers such as Fitbit Alta and Flex 2 don’t have the optical heart rate sensors.

So, you should consider getting only the latest model, such as Fitbit Sense or Fitbit Versa 2, as these have the heart rate monitor built-in.

3. Steps Tracking

Here’s the deal:

If you intend to use a Fitbit fitness tracker or smartwatch purely for step tracking, any model should work just fine for you.

Every Fitbit model features a three-axis accelerometer and a set of algorithm that monitor every step you take. As you move, the algorithm coverts your steps into digital measurement, which is information about your overall exercise.

The information that you get from the step-counting algorithm include:

  • Distance traveled
  • Calories burned
  • The intensity of your walking exercise
  • Number of steps walked

The bottom line is this:

Because every Fitbit fitness tracker and smartwatch currently on sale can track steps, you should do just fine with whatever model you choose.

4. Auto Workout Recognition

Some Fitbit models such as Sense, Versa, Surge, and Charge HR use the SmartTrack technology to automatically detect, record, and log the workout for you.

The SmartTrack technology works based on the principle of continuous movement. In other words, you’ll have to do the same exercise continuously for the feature to work.

But here’s the problem:

SmartTrack is extremely slow. While you can customize it to count an activity towards your exercise goals, you must initiate and remain on the same exercise for at least 15 minutes for it to detect and log the workouts for you.

That’s more time than it takes to manually log your workouts and get down to working out.

Given this limitation, I don’t think auto workout recognition is such a big deal to have. It can be a nice addition to your selection criteria for the best Fitbit for seniors, but it shouldn’t be a top priority.

5. App Integration

One of the things I love about Fitbit smartwatches and fitness trackers is the integration with third-party apps.

You aren’t going to connect the device directly to the external services, though. Instead, you can use the Fitbit companion app to connect to these services, as long as Fitbit support them. 

For example, Fitbit works with MyFitnessPal to give you access to a large food database, which an incredible option if you want to continue with healthy eating even at an older age.

If app integration is something important to you, you may first have to check if Fitbit supports your favorite selection before you settle for it.

6. Reminder to Move

You see:

The whole point of buying a Fitbit for seniors is to track your health and fitness. With the device, you can set exercise goals and optimize your future workouts based on the results that you get.

The problem is:

You’re not always going to be motivated to exercise. There are times when you’ll feel like procrastinating and resorting to a sedentary lifestyle.

This is where the Reminder to Move comes in.

Built into some Fitbit models, the Reminder to Move feature will alert you to get up and move if you’ve been still for the last 60 minutes.

The goal is to feed the smartwatch or fitness tracker with up to 250 steps an hour. What’s more? The device even motivates you to keep moving until you hit those hourly goals.

Given how often we need the reminder to keep our health and fitness in check, I strongly recommend that you get a Fitbit with the Reminder to Move feature. That way, you can stay on track and never for once become a subject to the sedentary lifestyle.

7. Alarms

Are you a heavy sleeper who needs help to wake up early? Or maybe you’re not a morning person but a little push can go a long way to get you up?

You don’t need the traditional alarm clock anymore.

Fitbit smartwatches and fitness trackers have built-in alarm with sound vibrations strong enough to get you out of sleep when it’s time to wake up.

Of course, every Fitbit has a built-in alarm, but whether or not you use it comes down to your personal preference.

8. Music Storage and Playback  

I don’t think music storage and playback is a must-have feature to prioritize. But, still, it might be an important factor to consider if you love listening to music.

Now, let me be clear:

Fitbit removed the option to add music to its devices. And you cannot stream music on platforms such as Spotify and Pandora.

The ability to control your phone’s music is the only option left on the table. And it isn’t even available on Fitbit Sense 2 or Versa 4.

So, if music functionality is one of the things that you’re looking for, a Fitbit won’t make the cut. You may have to consider some other Fitbit competitors instead.

Final Thoughts 

Now that I’ve shown you how to choose the best Fitbit for senior citizens, it should be easy for you to figure out what would work for you.

Remember, everyone’s needs are different. That’s why I’ve tried my best to cover all the specs to look for when looking for a Fitbit.

I hope this helps.  

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Michael Jonathan

Michael Jonathan is the brainchild of Apelo Studio. He loves talking about wearable devices, and he is passionate about helping you push your wearable device to its limits. His creativity and ability to tear electric components apart and put them back together makes him an incredible troubleshooter and blogger.

2 thoughts on “Best Fitbit for Seniors: A Complete Guide For The Elderly”

  1. Hi, I think I have some problem with an electro magnetic body. I’ve got a bag of watches that have died on me over the years, I’m 76, within relatively short times. They just stop. I’ve put new batteries in but no luck.
    Not until my brother gave me a solar watch did the problem go away.
    So now, my problem is my Fitbit Sense (Sense 2) I don’t remember but it has stopped working. It was a gift Nov. 2021 and for a couple months now, the only thing working on the device has been the Heart Rate. I don’t play music or download other apps. The sleep tracker never worked for me.
    Should I even try another Fitbit? Besides regular watch features I’d like to have the steps and heart rate tracked. I would like the sleep tracker but I could live without it.
    What would recommend?
    I like your articles.

    • Hello Linda,

      Sorry for the frustrations you’ve had with your watches, and the Fitbit Sense in particular.

      1. I have no idea what you did that caused your Fitbit Sense to stop working but I can suggest that you reset the device and set it up anew. You can watch this video for an easy walkthrough. Doing this often fixes many problems, such as Fitbit not monitoring heart rate, counting steps, and tracking sleep.

      2. If your Fitbit Sense still doesn’t work even after a hard reset, get another a new fitness tracker or smartwatch. Since you’ve already had a bad experience with Fitbit, I’m not sure whether you’d want to get another Fitbit – and that’s not to say that Fitbit is a bad brand. So I suggest you check my guide to Fitbit alternatives.

      Lastly, thank you for liking the work I do at Apelo Studio. My goal is to help as many people as possible to get the help they need with their wearable devices.

      Thanks, and I hope this helps.

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