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One of the biggest surveys of its kind has collected oodles of smartphone data from over 700,000 people across the world. The task was simple. Scientists at Stanford University asked all the survey’s respondents to record the amount of steps they took each day. Looks like downloading all those health apps paid off in the end!
The particular app in question was Argus, an activity monitoring app which provided researchers with over 68 million (you read that correctly) days of data.
The sample size is a huge deal. Like, massive. Researcher Scott Delp told the BBC that the study is roughly 1,000 times the size of all other previous experiments relating to human movement.
“There have been wonderful health surveys done, but our new study provides data from more countries, many more subjects, and tracks people’s activity on an ongoing basis,” he said. “This opens the door to new ways of doing science at a much larger scale than we have been able to do before.”
The findings are pretty eye-opening. According to the results, the average number of daily steps taken worldwide was 4,961. Of course, this number varied greatly from border to border, city to city, gender to gender, ocean to ocean, and exercise patterns. That number also factors in countries which provided no data at all.
So who got the bottom spot? Drum roll please… Indonesia – the average was an abysmal 3,513 steps per day. Sorry Indonesia, you maybe stunning, but you’ve been officially crowned the world’s laziest country.
The most active label went to China. In particular, Hong Kong topped the list with 6,880 steps a day.
To make all their findings easier to digest, all the data was compiled into this nifty little map:
Countries in blue had the highest amount of average daily steps, whereas those in red, had the lowest. Anything grey, had no data at all.
China’s win was followed by Japan with 6,010 steps, then Spain (5,936), the UK (5,444), USA, (4774), UAE (4, 516), and Brazil (4,289), respectively.
The full findings have been published in the journal Nature and highlights several important insights into the ways these countries can improve their overall health.
Here’s to a healthier 2017…