If not 10,000, how Many Steps *Should* We Actually Be Walking Each Day? - InsideHook

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In the mid-1960s, a a Japanese watch company called Yamasa Clock debuted the figure that has been associated with daily step-counts, activity meters and modern wearables like Fitbit and Apple Watch ever since. The young brand’s marketing team named their pedometer Manpo-kei, which translates to “10,000 steps meter.” Something about the number sounded right: it was large enough to feel like a goal, but small enough to feel like an achievable one for the average adult. But Yamasa’s motive was even less scientific than that. The Japanese character for 10,000 somewhat a resembles a gentleman out for a brisk stroll: ?.

Some 40 years later, an epidemiologist named I-Min Lee was in a friendly contest with her colleagues at the Harvard University School of Public Health to see which team could score the most overall steps per day. As the competition wore on and participants struggled to meet the daily goal of 10,000 steps, Lee did a little digging on the number and discovered the Yamasa backstory. And then, because this is Harvard we’re talking about, she used her background in exercise study to launch a full research study, relating step volume with all-cause mortality in older women.

MoBikeFed comment: Research shows the people who average 4000-5000 steps daily are healthier than those who average 3000 steps or less. People who average 7000-8000 steps may be healthier yet.

Of course, step count alone doesn't tell the whole story--many studies recommend doing higher-intensity workouts for at least short periods several times a week. Fast walking, for example, is known to be an excellent workout for building cardiovascular health.

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