Does Cycling Count As Steps In Fitbit? (Let’s Find Out)

Cycling Count as Steps in Fitbit

Fitbits are one among many wearable smart technologies widely used. In fact, the essence of this technology is to help in practicing a healthy lifestyle with various features.

But, if you choose to cycle with an indoor bike and measure your steps in the process so I can improve on it, can the Fitbit activity monitor help me do that?

Cycling doesn’t count as steps on a Fitbit. This device isn’t designed to count steps while cycling unless you’re climbing and the hands are moving, unlike cycling, where your arm will be stationary. But if you wish to count steps with your Fitbit while tracking indoors or cycling with your Fitbit, wear the watch on your ankle.

Will Fitbit Count Steps on a Bike?

Cycling Count as Steps in Fitbit

Fitbit wouldn’t naturally count steps on a bike but only track bike rides.

The reason is that they were not designed to measure steps without a change in height, i.e., when the altimeter fails to detect anything. 

Furthermore, all wrist-based trackers such as the Fitbit count steps by studying the motion of your arm swing as you walk or run.

But on a bike, the arms don’t move as much, so few or no steps are counted.

Other activity monitors like Apple Watch, Fitbit, Garmin, and Xiaomi Mi Band also calculate steps using the movement of arms.

When you bike, your arm is stationary most time. But, if you insist on counting your steps, put the watch on your ankle, but unfortunately, you’d lose all other statistics.

How Does Fitbit Work?

Fitbit works with an accelerator to measure the user’s movement.

Using the movement information of the Fitbit user, the Fitbit device will calculate the calories of fat burned, the distance covered, as well as the number of steps and display them. 

This device measures steps using an algorithm to detect motion or when the user is walking or running. Also, Fitbits measure altitude when you climb stairs.

This measurement is done by an altimeter which first detects a change in height before it starts the measuring. So if you’re ascending, it measures one floor per every 10 feet you take.

Before using the Fitbit watch, you need to create an account and select the package you want. There are two packages; basic and premium.

Fitbit’s basic package is free to use, while the latter has some additional features absent in the basics.

The premium is advisable for people who will be using the watch consistently. However, it requires a monthly or yearly subscription.

However, after purchasing the watch, you will be allowed to use the Fitbit Premium as a trial for a stipulated time to know the feeling.

#1. The Basic Package

The free basic package has quite many features that a casual user will benefit from while using it.

For example, vital statistics include your body weight, level of activity, the pattern of sleeping, and how much nutrients you take.

It’s undeniable that the above data are important, but not for someone who will be doing a lot of exercises per day. Therefore, they will need more than their body weight when gyming.

#2. The Premium Package

While using the premium, you’ll receive tips and observations using the information on your fitness and health. This feature is called Fitbit Premium Insights.

Furthermore, the insights you will be receiving are just for you, not generalized, but you might not be getting these insights daily.

Conclusively, Fitbit Premium will offer you some challenges to get better, and you can invite friends and compete with them.

Features of Fitbit’s Activity Trackers

Fitbit’s models come with many features, which, when explored, will make the users attain satisfaction, including the reliable battery life across all its models.

A few of them are discussed below.

#1. GPS Integration

The GPS feature is of two types – connected GPS and In-built GPS. These duos perform the same function of detecting location, but there is still a bit of a difference between them.

So let’s check out their differences.

Connected GPS Most Fitbit models depend on the GPS sensor of your cellphone to perform GPS functions like map routes, and distance tracking, among others.

In other words, they can’t work without pairing with your phone.

The in-built GPS, on the other hand, although not in all models, allows users to track their location and routes and record information such as their speed using a phone’s GPS sensors.

#2. EKG

The Fitbit sense model comes with this feature. It detects irregularities in the heart’s function and monitors the rise and fall in the heartbeat rate.

#3. Level of SPO2

Fitbits go as far as detecting the amount of oxygen in the blood and displaying it for the user to view.

#4. Heart Rate Monitoring

Tracking your heart rate and measuring how intense your workout is, are two abilities cyclists consider important when using smart wearable technology.

Many models include monitoring heart rate all day and resting heart rate monitoring as well, giving room for tracking diversified data.


When the track cycling Fitbit is on the arm while cycling, steps aren’t counted but bike ride speeds.

It is because the accelerator only works here to track heartbeat rate, while the altimeter will be dormant due to the hands being stationary.

However, wear the Fitbit on your ankle if you want to count steps while cycling.

Josh Matthews

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