Weight scales, waist measurements, BMI… these are all traditional ways to progress your weight loss. They’re also very limiting.
The latest way to gauge the effectiveness of your fitness regimen is to stand in front of a 3D body scanner, but does it work? Read on to find out.
How Does a 3D Body Scanner Work?
There are a few different types of 3D body scanners. One is the mPod, which partnered with LA Fitness. You can find their pods in their fitness centers around the United States.
To use an mPod, you step into a pod about the size of a photo booth. Sensors then capture body data and produce a 3D image that shows your real-time progress. Don’t forget to stand still.
There are also home scales that connect to an app on your phone. These have a camera attached that circles around you as you stand on the scale. The scale then sends data to your app where you can view it on your avatar.
What Kind of Data Does It Give Me?
A body scanner will give you personalized data unique to you, the user. Depending on the brand you use, you see your weight, body measurements, and body composition.
These scanners use over 200,000 data points to figure out the measurements of your:
They can also measure out your:
- BMI (Body Mass Index)
- body fat percentage
- fat-free mass and percentage
- waist-hip ratio
- waist-height ratio
- basal metabolic rate
- ideal weight range
- targets heart rate during exercise
Are They Accurate?
The first scanners used laser-scanning technology, similar to barcode scans. Originally, they were used for people to measure themselves before they bought clothing.
Newer scanners project patterns and create algorithms to predict how your body looks. Now, the scanners have a new purpose: to track these measurements for your benefit.
This is all to say, the technology for body scanners has been around for decades. Creators update that technology, making it more and more accurate.
Is the Data Helpful?
Using a scanner will get you a good idea of your body composition and its measurements. Does this information really help lose weight, though?
It can be very motivating to someone who is weight training. When you’re in an athletic mindset, seeing results in a numeric form can be very rewarding.
People who do see it as a form of self-reinforcement use the scanners alongside their physical activity. The more they use the scanners, the more they exercise, creating a positive cycle.
Nike+ did a study on body scanner usage. In this study, it showed that the people who uploaded the most data were more committed to running. These people enjoyed being able to track their progress.
Body Scans in Personal Training
A weightloss journey is complicated and long. It’s easy for someone to get discouraged when they rely on a scale alone. This is because muscle weighs more than fat.
As you lose fat during exercise, you also gain muscle weight. A typical bathroom scale only calculates the pounds on your body and can’t tell you how many of those pounds are from fat or muscle.
This is where new technology comes into play. Over the past few years, smartwatches have become a popular way to track your fitness. They certainly calculate more data than a scale alone.
Becoming readily available, body scans will transform the personal training world. They’ll take out the guessing on body fat percentages. They’ll provide a concrete example of fitness impact on clients without marginal error.
Visual Representation of Numbers
Seeing percentages and numerical values written down can be frustrating and confusing. As said above, most people focus on their overall weight on a scale. However, that scale number is not the only number you should be thinking of.
Most people who are not actively fit find it difficult to understand BMI percentage. Not to mention other numerical goals.
However, a full body scan will show you a visual representation of those numbers. This will make understanding those percentages a lot easier. It will also make it easier to handle when the scale doesn’t budge because of added muscle weight. Instead of focusing on the number being stagnant, you can focus on the actual, physical change the scan shows you.
Can It Be Discouraging?
If you aren’t a person who is inclined to exercise in the first place, this isn’t going to be the magic key. Having the information alone isn’t always enough to keep a person on track with a healthy routine.
Also, your body changes slowly. You’re not going to lose weight within a few days no matter what. If you expect to see that kind of quick change, it can be disheartening to see the real-life data not match up to unattainable goals.
On the other hand, this could be exactly what keeps you on task. Instead of feeling discouraged every time the scale shows water weight as weight gain, you can get a real analysis of where you are in your fitness journey.
It’s All About Motivation
Can a 3d body scanner help you lose weight? It’s all about motivation. This can be a great motivator if you love numeric data. It can help you keep yourself updated and ready to keep up with your exercise routine.
Looking for more fitness motivation? Check out our blog for more tips and inspiration to help you advance in every area of your life.