Fitness Trackers : Are They an EMF Concern?

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Getting back into our normal routines in the fall for most of us means getting our fitness back on track. 59% of Americans said they wanted to work out more this year – so you’re definitely not alone and that’s a good goal to have. To ensure they meet this goal, a lot of individuals have started buying fitness trackers to track how much they’re working out or how efficient/effective their workouts are. And this trend has been fueled by the new, different types of fitness trackers on the market including Fitbit, Apple Watch, and more. 

But with the amount of time that people wear them, it’s a fair question to ask how much EMF radiation these devices emit and are some better than others? 

We can start with Fitbit. Yes, Fitbits do emit EMF radiation as you might have guessed – majorly from the Bluetooth connection with your device and from the electrical components within the tracker. Despite the fact that this non-ionizing radiation doesn’t emit as much EMF radiation compared to something like your phone or laptop, the prolonged connection actually emits a good amount of radiation, something you should/could be wary of.

What’s the Issue with Bluetooth?

An issue with such radiation (caused by Bluetooth) is the lack of concrete data available. With such a small amount of research out there, you actually need to be selective about the studies you choose, because some could be subject to researcher bias (due to be funded by relevant parties). For the most part, current Bluetooth devices on the market create EMF radiation emissions that are actually just a bit less than the government regulation standard (SAR levels – you can read about these here). Interestingly, there is actually research now that is telling us that these levels are actually way more than what is actually safe for us. Many scientists & other experts like to claim that this particular low-frequency radiation isn’t dangerous due to its lack of heat. But there are still several disputes and every year, there is more and more research providing data that even this type of radiation can be quite threatening to the body. 

What are the Most Harmful Fitness Trackers?

In terms of fitness trackers, what is the most harmful/least harmful to you – as discussed, fitness trackers with the Bluetooth ability are more dangerous and you would be better off with trackers that don’t have that capability. The table below includes the most harmful trackers to the least: 


Fitness Tracker 



Fitbit charge 5

Extremely harmful – connected GPS, heart tracker, bluetooth on 24/7


Garmin Vivomove Sport

Extremely harmful – tracks your heart rate, sleep & uses GPS 


Apple watch 

Highly harmful – heart tracker, bluetooth connectivity, research showing EHS symptoms


Garmin Vívosmart HR Activity Tracker

Harmful but can be minimized – this model of Garmin allows you to disable bluetooth and track important details


Samsung Gear fit2 pro

Moderately harmful – can disable bluetooth but track all data in realtime 


OZO Fitness SC2 Digital Pedometer 

Not harmful – track & achieve your running/jogging/walking goals, no Bluetooth connection 


iGank Fitness tracker watch 

Not harmful – track steps, calories burned, no bluetooth connectivity, long lasting battery 


Overall, having a fitness tracker is important to track your activity so you can meet your fitness goals. Devices with Bluetooth & wifi capabilities do emit EMF radiation but you can disable these features to reduce your exposure on some devices. You can always invest in the top trackers on the market and just disconnect when you don’t need the Bluetooth – and turn it back on when you need to sync the device with your phone and gain access to data. Also, note that not all trackers need Bluetooth capabilities to operate because the devices don’t need it to track data. So now that you’re more aware, make your purchase wisely, and good luck with your fitness goals! Read more about other fitness tech such as smartwatches that could be exposing you to additional radiation here

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