Get answers to your pedometer questions

A walking expert gives advice on how to get the most out of your step counter.
By Source: Helen Thompson, RD, program director, America On the Move

Q: How can I tell if my pedometer is working correctly?
A: Even the best pedometers are only as accurate as the placement on the person wearing them. Start with the pedometer on your waistband or belt. Then, move it so it’s in line with your kneecap. To test it, set the unit to zero and take 100 steps. See if the number on the pedometer matches the count.

Q: How many steps off is problematic?
A: If the count is off by more than 5 to 10 percent, you should adjust the placement of your pedometer, making sure it’s upright and sits close to your skin. Then take another 100 steps to test it again.

Q: Any tips on getting in more steps?
A: You’re more likely to keep it up for the long run if you start small. Look for simple opportunities to take more steps such as taking the grocery cart back into the store or at work printing to a printer that’s further away from your desk.