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How to set sleep tracker onFitbit Flex

Sleep tracking is a method used in measuring the amount of sleep an individual gets. Sleep tracking is important, and information from this activity can be used to improve the well-being and the health of an individual.

With sleep tracking, there can be answers to questions like the number of hours I sleep? Was I turning and tossing during the night? Am I a deep or a light sleeper?

Sleep tracking can be performed by professionals or by using a personal sleep tracker. Professionals use a method called Polysomnography (PSG) to monitor your sleep pattern. It includes an observer while you sleep with the use of various equipment.

Information which is collected during this period is your heart rate, your eye movement, air flow in and out of your lungs, brain waves, blood oxygen levels, and muscle activity.

Most Personal sleep trackers are usually wearable devices which are worn by the individual who wishes to monitor sleep patterns.

The method used by personal sleep trackers is an Actigraphy. It involves recording the movement of the body using a device which is worn on the wrist.

The movement is recorded using a sensor known as an accelerometer. The accelerometer converts any movement of the body into electrical signals which can be recorded.

The principle behind this method is that while you are not moving for a period, it means you are asleep during this period, and on the other hand a significant movement of the body is an indication that you are awake.

There has been an increase in the number of fitness devices made available by companies and also individuals who have started incorporating them into their daily lives to follow their routines and keep an eye on their fitness level. With sleep playing a vital role in health, fitness without sleep makes it incomplete.

This is one of the reasons why a lot of fitness trackers now come with features to help track your sleep patterns and the quality of your sleep.

This is along with the capacity to record and follow your fitness. With this features, you can monitor both your sleep and your fitness while making the necessary changes required for better health.

While a lot of people may have trackers with this features, others may not have an idea of how to turn on this sleep tracking feature.

One of such devices where users may encounter this situation is the Fitbit Flex. The Fitbit flex comes with this functionality inbuilt, but you have to turn it on when you want it to function manually.

Fitbit Flex

While designed as a fitness tracker, the Fitbit flex also provides an additional feature of being a sleep tracker. It comes with a replaceable rubber strap which can be changed when it starts to wear. It has up to five different colors of the strap which you can purchase and is water resistant.

Using the Fitbit Flex to Track Sleep

By using accelerometers, which are sensors, the Fitbit Flex can monitor and record your sleep patterns during the night.

Automatic sleep tracking

This is done by identifying any movement and recognizing the speed and direction of such movement.

It reaches the conclusion that you have fallen asleep if it does not detect any movement for over an hour. As you roll over in your sleep, this kind of motion further proves to the tracker that you are indeed asleep.

When you wake up in the morning, your increased movement and body activity is an indication to the tracker that you are no longer asleep. As advancements are still being made in this technology, you may experience some inaccurate readings from the tracker.

An example of such situation may occur when you are performing a sedentary job. As a result of the prolonged inactivity, the tracker may assume you are asleep and log in wrong data. In such a situation, you can go to your dashboard and delete the sleep record.

Manual Sleep tracking

To manually set up when you want your Fitbit sleep tracking to begin, there are certain steps which you can follow to set it up. By following these steps, you put the device into sleep mode. When you manually set the device to sleep mode, you can have access to how long it took you to fall asleep as one of the stats on your dashboard.

To turn your Fitbit Flex to sleep mode, follow these simple steps;

  • Put you Fitbit on your wrist when it is time for bed
  • Once you’ve settled in, rapidly tap your Fitbit flex for two seconds
  • When the device vibrates, and two dimming lights also appear on the screen, this tells you it has entered into sleep mode
  • After waking up in the morning, you need to rapidly tap the device for two seconds to remove it from sleep mode
  • A vibration with a flash and spinning lights indicates it is no longer in sleep mode.
  • Open your dashboard to view your sleep patterns and stats for the night

Note: when in sleep mode, the Fitbit Flex does not show the progress for any previously set goal. A display of alternating lights indicates that it is in sleep mode.

There are also other settings which you may like to know about when tracking your sleep patterns. One of such setting is selecting either a “normal” mode or a “sensitive” mode for your tracker.

These two modes offer slightly different methods for tracking your sleep pattern.

If you use the “sensitive” mode, the tracker identifies almost all motion during the period you are asleep as a period when you were awake.

No matter how minor the movement, it will detect and record it. Users who are usually tired when they wake and always have a record of sufficient rest may find this method very effective and significant.

On the “normal” mode, only major movements such as rolling over during sleep are recorded as a time when you were awake. This setting is more widely used by a lot of users.
With the recent update released by Fitbit, the Fitbit Flex can now automatically track when you are asleep and log you sleep data. This auto-detection means that you will not be able to know how long it took for you to fall asleep.


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