Young people across America team up to build fitness trackers

Young people across the nation are designing fitness trackers as part of the 10th annual 4-H National Youth Science Day.

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln developed this year’s challenge. Called Incredible Wearables, it teaches young people to engineer and build a wearable fitness tracker. Similar to last year, more than 100,000 schoolchildren are expected to participate at local events in all 50 states.

“4-H NYSD brings science to life for young people and exposes them to real-world applications of classroom lessons,” said NFL Pro-Bowler and youth education advocate Tony Richardson.

“Wearable technology is especially relevant and continues to improve lives around the world, impacting our experiences with fitness, professional sports and beyond.”

Essential reading: Top 10 fitness trackers for kids

The flagship event was held yesterday to coincide with national Youth Science Day. During the event, 4-H teen leaders and volunteers taught young people how to design, build and optimize the health trackers, with Richardson and other stars helping kids to test their devices and collect data.

The gadgets are, of course, somewhat programmed beforehand, but kids can assemble and customize them. After building their fitness tracker, the students plug it into an app. Those who are interested can also purchase the kit which serves up to 8 kids at a time and is totally reusable.

“4-H NYSD is a catalyst that sparks kids’ interest in STEM. This year’s challenge, Incredible Wearables, gives youth an opportunity to be engineers for a day through a fun and hands-on project that teaches kids how technology can be created through engineering, not just bought in a store,” said Jennifer Sirangelo, president and CEO, National 4-H Council.

“With support from our partners, we are able to bring the lasting impact of NYSD to tens of thousands of kids across the country, helping them become the next generation of STEM leaders and innovators.”

For information on how to get involved head over to www.4-h.org/nysd.

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