The Ideal Number of Steps to Strive for Each Day Is Not 10,000 . . . It’s Less

Ever since pedometers were incorporated into our watches and phones, lots of us have been striving to reach 10,000 steps per day.

Or at least we were until the pandemic, when everyone was stuck at home and our new goal was more like . . . 500 steps.  (Tip:  If you carry your phone with you to and from the bathroom, you’re halfway there!)  (???)

Well, new research from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst found that 10,000 steps is a myth, but there IS an ideal number of steps to aim for.  And it’s actually LESS.  It’s getting between 6,000 and 8,000 steps each day.

The study concluded that striving for that range reduces the risk of early death for people who are 60 or older by 54%.  But walking more than 8,000 steps doesn’t actually add any benefits . . . it just leveled off.  There was also no definitive association with walking speed.

For what it’s worth, this was comprehensive research, involving over 15 studies on walking and mortality, covering almost 50,000 people across four continents.  And it does recommend a goal of 8,000 to 10,000 steps for people UNDER 60.