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Sitting too much and looking for help to get more active? 

Want a free Fitbit Versa ($229 value) & $75 for participating in research? 

If yes, click below to check your eligibility or read on for more information. 


Background: It is common for smartphone apps to send too many notifications when trying to help someone be active.  This can result in a person ignoring the notifications and not benefiting from the app’s support. 

Purpose: The purpose of this study is to gather data to support the development of a future smartphone app meant to help a person increase their physical activity that only provides support when and where it is needed for each person. 

Who is this study for? This study is for you if you: 

  • currently engage in less than 60 minutes of exercise per week;
  • Want to get more active by increasing the steps you take throughout your day;
  • are at least 21 years old;
  • are healthy enough to participate;
  • live in the United States;
  • own a smartphone (iPhone or Android)

What will happen during the study?  The entire study will be conducted remotely. You will first undergo an interview with one of our staff to determine if you are eligible for the study. If you are eligible, you will be asked to complete a baseline survey and to also take part in an onboarding session to help you get set up with your free Fitbit Versa 3 and the study app (available for either Android or iPhone).  We will then ask you to wear the Fitbit for 10 days without any support provided. This will allow the app to learn about your normal activity patterns, so that it can provide personalized support.  After 10 days,  the app will provide personalized suggested daily step goals and also send notifications with suggestions on building up your skills in fitting in brief, 10-15 minute walking bouts throughout your day. Each evening, the app will ask you to fill out a brief survey, which was specifically designed to help you think about what will happen the next day. Prior research shows filling out a survey like this can be valuable itself, for helping you increase your physical activity. After the intervention period, we will ask you to participate in one final interview. 

How much time will this take? The study will last for approximately 9 months (270 days total) and, for each day, you will only be asked to engage with the app for 5-10 minutes each day.  In addition, there will be three interviews: Enrollment, Pre-Study, and Post-Study. Each interview will last 30-60 minutes. 

What benefits will I get from participating? You will be given a Fitbit Versa 3 to keep ($229 value) as long as you participate in at least the first 3 months of the study.  In addition, you will be provided $25 if you complete at least 80% of the phone surveys sent to you over a 3-month period. There will be a total of 3 3-month periods, hence you have the opportunity to receive $75 for participation. If you miss one period, you are still eligible for the $25 from the next time window. Last, while it cannot be guaranteed, it is possible that participating in the study will help you to develop a regular physical activity routine. 

Who is conducting the study?  Dr. Eric Hekler, who is a Professor and Interim Associate Dean for Community Partnerships at the Herbert Wertheim School of Public Health and Human Longevity Sciences at UC San Diego and the Director of the Center for Wireless and Population Health Systems is leading this project along with his associates, Drs. Daniel Rivera from Arizona State University and Predrag “Pedja” Klasnja from the University of Michigan.

What if I change my mind later?

  • Research is voluntary – whether or not you join is your decision. You can discuss your decision with others (such as family, or friends).
  • You can say yes but change your mind later.
  • If you say no, we will not hold your decision against you.
  • Your decision will not affect any other benefits you may be entitled to.
  • Please ask questions or mention concerns before, during, or after the research.

I’m in! What’s next?

Click HERE and fill out the form to check if you are eligible. 

Our staff will contact you soon.

I’m interested but have questions. Who do I contact?

Please send an email to Study staff will respond within 1-2 business days.




UCSD IRB#: 800132

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