AccuWeather, the global leader in weather information, digital media and forecasts with Superior Accuracy™, and Withings, the leader in the connected health revolution, have announced insights of a new study correlating AccuWeather's comprehensive global weather data with activity levels from Withings' activity trackers.
To complete this in-depth study, data science teams from both companies examined one year of weather and activity for 24 cities around the globe, analyzing temperature, rainfall and average number of steps by gender, age and city.
"This year-long study with AccuWeather is a great example of how data can help people improve their health," said Cédric Hutchings, CEO of Withings. "With these key learnings, Withings can become more intelligent at offering better solutions for our users to stay active during any type of weather condition."
The study demonstrates the expansive impact of weather on physical activity across different cities around the world.
"This is a great example of how our best-in-class weather data can be combined with partner data to uncover unique insights around how weather affects our users' everyday lives," David Mitchell, AccuWeather vice president of emerging platforms, said. "AccuWeather's goal is to take advantage of the growing amount of sensor data available through wearable activity trackers, and other connected devices, to create a more personalized weather forecast for users."
Preferred temperatures for outdoor activity were found to range between 60 and 69 F; however, some cities preferred higher temperatures, including São Paulo where people prefer walking with temperatures ranging from 90 to 99 F.
In San Antonio, where the preferred temperature range is 80 to 89 F, Boris Diaw of the San Antonio Spurs NBA team said, "I'll walk my dogs and play with them in any weather, but it's easy to see how people take fewer steps here when it heats up. San Antonio isn't like New York City, where walking is a way of life. When it gets really hot, even I change my schedule and walk my dogs in the early morning or late at night."
Men were found to be more sensitive to cold than women in the study. Men walk on average 6.9 percent fewer steps when temperatures are below the preferred range. Meanwhile, women walk on average 6.0 percent fewer steps when it is colder.
In terms of precipitation, women walk on average 8.3 percent fewer steps on rainy days compared to 7.0 percent fewer for men.
Men and women weighed in with why rainy weather affects their level of activity.
"Why do I lose steps in the rain?" Best-selling Romance Author Lynn Marie Hulsman pondered. "Because I'm no Meg Ryan or Sandra Bullock, that's why. When one of them is doused by a passing taxi's tidal wave, they wind up looking cute and vulnerable, hair slicked back, and mascara intact. My post-douse look is not nearly as adorable."
When asked the same question, Joe Marsh Garland, stage and screen actor best known for his continuing role as corrections officer Scott O'Neill on "Orange Is the New Black," said, "L.A. in the rain is 700 percent more dangerous than cliff diving. I'd stay in too."