Walking the dogs with AW

Discussion in 'Apple Watch' started by tedley, Apr 21, 2017.

  1. tedley macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2009
    Location:
    Sacramento
    #1
    I'm about ready to purchase an apple watch and have a question about how it tracks waling.

    I have two 70 lb. GSDs and take them on a 5K walk several times a week. I have read that the watch tracks walking/running by arm movement. I'd be wearing the watch on my left hand, but I also hold the leashes in my left hand. As a result, my left arm makes considerably less movement due to holding the leashes. Would this reduction in movement decrease the AW's ability to accurately record the distance of my walks?
     
  2. Mlrollin91 macrumors G4

    Mlrollin91

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    Nov 20, 2008
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    Ventura County
    #2
    Yes. It would drastically reduce the accuracy. Even when I go for walks/runs and hold a water bottle in my left hand, it reduces the accuracy because the weight prevents a full arm swing. You would either need to wear the watch on your right wrist, or hold the leash with your right hand for full accuracy.
     
  3. FrisbeeK9 macrumors 6502a

    FrisbeeK9

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2006
    #3
    I'm left handed and wear the watch on my left hand as well as hold my dogs leash with the left. I haven't noticed any less accuracy on my walks. The activity app tracks my movement on the map. Maybe I'm missing something.
     
  4. tedley thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 3, 2009
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    Sacramento
    #4
    That's good to know. Thank you!

    I usually have my iPhone in my pocket. Would the phone and the watch sync and choose the higher total assuming the lower totals missed steps, or would one device take priority?
     
  5. Newtons Apple, Apr 21, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2017

    Newtons Apple Suspended

    Newtons Apple

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2014
    Location:
    Jacksonville, Florida
    #5
    Just checked and my iPhone and AW agree to the step.

    Interesting as I leave my phone on the desk at times when going out into the warehouse. Does the watch over rule the phone or does the phone over rule the watch?
     
  6. tedley thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #6

    Very Cool. Thanks, everyone!!
     
  7. SDColorado macrumors 65816

    SDColorado

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    Nov 6, 2011
    Location:
    Highlands Ranch, CO
    #7
    I have not either. I have taken a route with my dog /left wrist/leash in left and haven't noticed a significant difference in tracking, when taking the same walk without the dogs.
     
  8. Stefan johansson macrumors 65816

    Stefan johansson

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    Sweden
    #8
    There is apps that measure walking distance with GPS data from the watch,much better for walks in terrain.
     
  9. Mlrollin91 macrumors G4

    Mlrollin91

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    Nov 20, 2008
    Location:
    Ventura County
    #9
    Yes. The watch is default over the phone. So what you are seeing in health is only the watch. Therefore in the OPs situation, steps would not get counted. You can set it up for the phone to be default but then watch wouldn't keep track.
     
  10. SDColorado macrumors 65816

    SDColorado

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    Nov 6, 2011
    Location:
    Highlands Ranch, CO
    #10
    From what I understand, the tracking by the AW is a lot more sophisticated than simple arm swing and makes use of several sensors, including the heart rate monitor, 3-axis accelerometer, Gyroscope and GPS, either from the phone or AW2. The heart monitor supposedly to assist in telling the AW, whether you are really moving, vs waving vs just moving your wrist. The GPS to help calculate your total distance traveled over a certain time and divide it by the average step.

    Which is why calibration is so important. CNet had an interesting comparison of devices where a calibrated AW did very well, while the uncalibrated watch, not so well...

    https://www.cnet.com/news/smartwatch-step-counter-and-distance-tracker-accuracy/

    My advice, if you generally walk your dogs, would be to calibrate the AW while walking the dogs. That is likely to provide you with a more accurate result when dog walking.
     
  11. Relentless Power macrumors P6

    Relentless Power

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2016
    #11
    That's true, I guess it would depend on the terrain that you're referring to. But I also want to caution that certain apps are Horrible in tracking the data.
     
  12. AlliFlowers Contributor

    AlliFlowers

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    Jan 1, 2011
    Location:
    L.A. (Lower Alabama)
    #12
    I switch between using my crutch with my left and right arm. The side using the crutch had very little swing, but it doesn't seem to affect my steps total.
     
  13. matrix07 macrumors 601

    matrix07

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2010
    #13
    OP, my advice would be use Outdoor Walk workout when you walk the dog. That way it will not matter if you swing your arm correctly 'cause the watch will use GPS to determine distance anyway.
     
  14. ftaok macrumors 603

    ftaok

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    Jan 23, 2002
    Location:
    East Coast
    #14
    That's what I do when I mow the lawn
     

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