Use of wearable technology is especially high in Australia with 55% of Australians owning some type of wearable device. Of those owning a wearable device, 48% owned a fitness band.
While fitness bands are typically designed for adults, the new Garmin Vivofit Jr 2 is a wearable fitness band designed specifically for children.
I’m here to tell you all you need to know about the Vivofit Jr 2 and why it is a great choice for your child.
Key Features of the Garmin Vivofit Jr 2
Like the first version of the tracker, the unit is designed to help children ages four to nine be active while making staying active feel like a game.
Here are the key features of the newest generation device.
Made for small wrists, the Vivofit Jr 2 is lightweight and water-resistant. This means it can stand up to the wear and tear you child will inflict upon it throughout the day.
One of the new features of this device is a series of replaceable bands using Disney, Star Wars, and Marvel themed designs. There are two types of bands, adjustable and stretchy.
The adjustable bands have clasps like watch bands and are better suited for older children with larger wrists. Stretchy bands are best for younger children and stretch to fit over the wrists of the child.
Because the bands are replaceable, it is easy to update the look of the unit or buy a different size band as your child grows.
A significant upgrade in the Garmin Vivofit Jr 2 is the addition of a color screen. This screen stays on and shows the time like a watch. One nice feature is the ability to customize the screen, so it will display your child’s name as well.
The device has one large button below the screen allowing your child to change the screen displayed and to synch the device to a smartphone app. This button scrolls through the watch screens to show a variety of information:
- Daily steps
- Active minutes
- Number of chores finished
- Number of coins and stars earned for the day
Rather than use a rechargeable battery, the unit operates on a single coin cell battery. This means you won’t have to worry about plugging the device in to keep it charged.
The battery lasts at least a year, so you won’t need to replace it too often.
Using the Garmin Connect App allows you to manage the tracker settings via a smartphone. Once you install the app, setting up the device is a straightforward process.
Through the app, parents can track their child’s activity including sleep metrics and the number of active minutes. Multiple devices can be synched to the account allowing you to track more than one child.
The app also allows parents to set up chores or other timed activities, so the Garmin Vivofit Jr 2 can tell the child when it’s time to do them. For example, you can make sure your child brushes his/her teeth by setting up a two-minute toothbrushing activity for the morning and evening.
Tasks can be set as one-off chores, or to recur daily, weekly or on specific days of the week so they are not forgotten. You can set up a point value for each chore to set the reward level.
Chores can also be easily shared across all the children synched to the smartphone app. As a result, you don’t have to set up the same reminder for each of your children individually. A nice timesaver for households with multiple children who have the devices.
You can also use the device to set up a timer and have the tracker remind your child they are running out of time to complete the chore. This is a great way make sure your child gets dressed on time or finishes their homework in the allotted period.
Using the app, you can see if the chore is complete and reward your child with virtual coins to give positive feedback for completing their chores.
One of the new features of this device is the ability to use the tracker to play games and keep your child active. The toe-to-toe challenge allows your child to challenge others to a two-minute timed step competition.
The Garmin Vivofit Jr 2 will track the number of steps taken during the two-minute period, so your child can find out how they did against their competitor.
In addition, the tracker has themed adventure games which activate once your child has met their 60-minute activity goal for the day. Only one level will unlock per day making sure your child has an incentive to hit their activity goal each day, so they can progress through the mission.
There are three missions for your child:
- BB-8: A Star Wars Story
- Mickey’s Birthday Surprise: A Disney Adventure
- Ultron’s Revenge: A Marvel Avengers Mission
All these games help keep your child engaged and active while they work to receive rewards like badges and new icons as they progress through the different levels.
Keeping Your Child Active
The Garmin Vivofit Jr 2 is a great device for helping make sure your child stays active.
Tracking the number of steps and activity minutes of your child can let you see how your child is doing. More importantly, the tracker gives you a way to motivate your child to stay active which sets the Vivofit Jr 2 apart from other fitness wearables.
Using games, rewards, and reminders to do chores will help keep your child active and engaged. Because the tracker is specifically designed for young children, it will fit their smaller wrists and stand up to the daily abuse which will be likely inflicted upon it.
All this makes the Garmin Vivofit Jr 2 the perfect fitness tracker for your child.
Be sure to contact me with any questions or feedback and I’ll be happy to respond as soon as I can.