A History of PAI Science and How it was Developed

This is how we explain PAI (Personal Activity Intelligence) to our family, friends and corporate partners: “It’s a customized heart-health program that lives on a numerous wearable devices and helps people improve their cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF). CRF is so important in determining current and future health, that it’s considered a vital sign.” 

That’s the 5 second explanation of PAI, but there is so much more to it than that. Years of scientific research went into developing PAI and we’re very proud of the unique offering we have today.


PAI is truly one-of-a-kind. We don’t advocate for a single type of exercise, a specific duration of activity or ask you to track an arbitrary metric (like steps or calories burned). We’re solely focused on heart health. We’re interested in enabling people to track how often they get their heart pumping fast enough to improve their CRF, which is considered a vital sign by the American Heart Association. CRF is the body’s ability to supply oxygen to the skeletal muscle system during sustained physical activity. 


Historically, VO2 max was determined by an uncomfortable test that was performed in a hospital or lab where the patient would wear a mask while running on a treadmill. Our researchers in Norway developed PAI using data from one of the largest health studies ever conducted-- the HUNT study. The HUNT study used robust health data from approximately 70,000 people collected since 1984, as well as information from the Norwegian Cause of Death Registry. That data was used to develop and validate PAI as an effective tool in prescribing personalized amounts of life-extending physical activity. It was determined that if a person achieved and maintained 100 weekly PAI, they would lower their risk of cardiovascular disease. 


PAI can help anyone improve their heart health-- and we mean anyone, at any fitness level, and increase their odds of living a longer, better quality life. What is more motivating than that?


It’s likely that the PAI program could result in weight loss, increased endurance and heightened energy levels (talk about some major benefits!), but our number one goal is to help people focus on being the healthiest and most energetic version of themselves. We want to enable people to live independently and enjoy all of their years. 


We recognize what really motivates people to get healthier—everyone wants to live a long and healthy life, do things they love to do with the people they love and make every year count. The reality is most people work in jobs that require them to be sedentary for the majority of the day, so asking someone to do a daily hour-long workout or commit to walking six miles everyday is simply not practical for the vast majority of the population. Fortunately, our numerous scientific studies prove that it is not necessarily to do daily workouts or even eat perfectly healthy to improve heart health. If a person is sedentary most of the day, they can still be heart healthy if they exercise. 


The PAI technology works with existing wearables, including Fitbit, Apple Watch and Huami’s Amazfit. 


What does the 100 PAI Score Mean? 


Research has proven that maintaining a weekly score of 100 can help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and mortality by an average of 25% and extend the lifespan by an average of 5 years. Even reaching 50 weekly PAI has heart health benefits. And we tell everyone that a good goal to start with-- if they’re unfit, is 30 PAI. 


We wanted to make this easy to understand and customizable. Reaching 100 will require a different level of effort for each person, based on that person’s age, sex, resting heart rate, how active they are and how hard they push themselves when being active. As they get more fit (resting heart rate decreases, they may weigh less, etc.), reaching a weekly 100 will become more challenging because they’re more fit, therefore it takes more effort. With PAI, they’re always being challenged to take it to the next level until they reach a weekly 100 and maintain that number.


If you’re interested in trying PAI, download the PAI Connect app for Apple Watch or register on the PAI Dashboard to connect your Fitbit to start improving your heart health today.


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Data from the HUNT study was used to develop and validate PAI as an effective tool in prescribing personalized amounts of life-extending physical activity. It was determined that if a person achieved and maintained 100 weekly PAI, they would lower their risk of cardiovascular disease