Get a Good Night’s Sleep with Fitbit’s Sleep Tools

Fitbit sleep

Sleep logging with Fitbit continues to evolve. In addition to monitoring your sleep, it’s now also possible to set sleep goals, see your sleep stages, and get on-device bedtime reminders. But that’s not all. Below, all the ways Fitbit can help you sleep better and smarter.

6 Sleep-Boosting Fitbit Features

Track your sleep

All Fitbit trackers (except Fitbit Zip) monitor sleep patterns, detecting time spent awake, restless, and asleep. Logs are stored in one place on the Fitbit app and can be viewed day by day, week by week, or even over months and years so you can track how your your sleep changes over time. For more information, see How do I track my sleep?

set a sleep goal

Sticking to a consistent sleep schedule can improve your sleep—and your health. To create one, click on the sleep tile in your Fitbit app and then on the gear icon at the top right (or the moon icon at the bottom if you’re a Windows 10 user). From there, you can set a sleep goal (7 to 9 hours is recommended for adults), as well as the target times you want to go to sleep and wake up. Adjust these goals as you learn how much sleep you really need to feel well-rested. Learn more about How a Regular Bedtime Can Improve Your Health.

Activate bedtime reminders

While you’re in the sleep settings in your Fitbit app, turn on Bedtime Reminders and set it for at least 30 minutes before your ideal bedtime. Your smartphone will notify you when it’s time to start winding down, which can help you fall asleep faster and sleep longer. If you own a Fitbit Alta HR or Fitbit Charge 2, you can also get on-device reminders.

USE A SILENT ALARM

All Fitbit trackers (except Zip) allow you to set up to eight silent alarms, all of which work the same way: At the time(s) you specified, your device will gently vibrate and light up several times, repeating again in nine minutes if you don’t dismiss it. Use one as an alarm clock to wake up more gently in the morning. This guide will show you how to set and manage the alarms.

GET SLEEP INSIGHTS

If your tracker monitors sleep, then you’re eligible for Sleep Insights—personalized guidance that’s based on how your other healthy (or unhealthy!) habits may be affecting your sleep. This feature uses the whole of your Fitbit data—everything from your diet to your exercise patterns—to discover trends, so the more you use your device and app, the smarter your Sleep Insights will become.

Fitbit Sleep InsightsFor example, one insight may read: “While it might help you fall asleep faster, alcohol close to bedtime may disrupt your sleep and make you wake up more during the night.”

Or: “You sleep a bit better on nights after a run. It’s subtle, but you spend 5 fewer minutes being restless/awake on those nights.” 

For more information, read New Fitbit Features Deliver Data Previously Only Available Through a Sleep Lab.

See your sleep stages

If you use a  Fitbit Blaze, Alta HR, or Charge 2, your tracker will use your movement and heart rate patterns to estimate your sleep stages—i.e. how long you spend in light, deep, and Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep each night. (Note: If you slept in a position that prevented your tracker from getting a consistent heart-rate reading or wore it too loosely, the app with show you Classic Sleep instead of Sleep Stages.) For more information about Sleep Stages and how they can affect your health, read REM, Light, Deep: Much of Each Stage of Sleep Are You Getting?

Fitbit Sleep Stages hypnograph

Track your sleep tonight with Fitbit, view the results tomorrow, and let us know what you think in the comments!

Related Stories:
6 Sneaky Signs You Might Be Sleep Deprived
Your Heart Rate is the Key to Smarter Sleep Stages. Here’s Why.
Restless Sleep Isn’t Always Bad (But Here’s When It’s a Problem)

88 Comments   Join the Conversation

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  • Why is the sleep log changed so I can’t see the exact time? It’s not very useful now 🙁 Hope it gets changed back, otherwise this is my last Fitbit.

  • I am not sure how to get the sleep log to populate. I go to the dashboard, bring up the sleep but it only has the previous day there. Then after awhile and with me trying different things, it auto populates or so it seems. Is there a place to go to or is this how it works?

    • Hi Susan. It sounds like you’r on the latest app version for iOS. The new dashboard does not allow you to view previous days when going back to previous days by design. You’ll need to tap on the sleep tile to look at previous days sleep data. Let us know if you have questions!

  • I’ve had mine for about 2 1/2 weeks, and I love it except for one thing: it has only logged my sleep correctly 2 times. I tried NOT putting the arm that it’s on under my pillow (that only helped a little), and I made it tighter (again, only helped a bit). Last night I reset my sleep times, and it worked perfectly!? Any ideas/suggestions? Thanks.
    Daina

  • It records just partial times of my sleep; if I go to be at 10:30, and I wake up at 2 am, it might not record the rest of the night’s sleep. I understand it can perceive movement as awake, but not for a full 5 more hrs of the night. I tried both the normal and sensitive set-ups for the movement and it’s the same with both. Right now, I don’t find it specially useful in tracking my sleep. My old UP24 (that was very bad on other aspects) tracked my sleep much better.

    • From what I understand FitBit requires that you have a full hour of little movement to qualify as sleep and that is not adjustable for those of us who toss and turn during the night. I get up almost every night for a couple of minutes to go to the bathroom. FitBit always says I am up for between 1 and 2 hours to complete my toilet run. Two things could fix this: 1)Allow me to adjust the time to perceived sleep to less than an hour.. 2) give me a “less sensitive” setting as well as the “more sensitive” setting. Easy fixes if they would only do it.

  • Although my sleep hours are set 11 pm bedtime and 7am awake time my Fitbit only shows sleep time of about 3-4 hours. From 3-4 am to awake time at 7M

  • I’ve had my Atla for 3 weeks & really like it. But it has never recorded one volition of sleep. That is the only part that does not work at all. I set it up & it said it is ready. Any tips?

  • It’s 8:21 pm on Monday. it’s just downloaded Saturday’s night’s data. It’s not showing any data for sleep on Sunday night. It would be good to have some data. Even better — how do I track both normal and sensitive movements? I’ve a ChargeHR.

    • Hi, thanks for your comment! If your Charge HR didn’t pick up your sleep on Sunday, you can manually log it following the directions here. To switch your sleep sensitivity, you can check out this article. The “normal” setting is applicable to most users, but you can switch this in your settings. Hope this helps!

  • I wish I could tap my Alta and put it to sleep like I could my flex, then wake it each morning by tapping. Now it records my awake time watching tv in bed as sleep.

  • I’ve had my Alta for about three weeks. I played with it when I first started using it and set my sleep goal then. At first I didn’t use the log sleep from the extra’s button but now do. I hit “begin sleep now” when I crawl in and “I’m awake” when I wake up. It tracks it quite nicely.

  • I’m a very restless sleeper and so the first night I wore it, the next morning it showed that I had already done 232 steps. So I don’t wear it to bed anymore and when I’m doing things around the house I take it off so I can get a more accurate step number. How can this be corrected? Thanks

  • I have an alta and I was wondering if there was any way to get the specific times up it only says when I go to bed and when I wake up, I would like to know when I was restless and when I woke up in the night. Thanks.
    -Rachel

  • Sometimes it does not tracking my sleep until after I have been asleep for quite some time. Or it tracks periods of sleep but not the whole night. Last night it says I slept from 10:30 to 12.00AM. And then started over from 1:15 to 6:25. I did not wake up during that 1 hr and 15 minutes.

  • It would be nice if Fitbit would also, take into consideration those of us that don’t work a regular 9-5. I’m sure I’m not the only thing me who works shifts work so setting a time to go to sleep is not the same from one week to the next. One week, I’m sleeping days 2 days, the next I’m sleeping days 5 days. I’m sure it wouldn’t be that difficult to add a different setting for shift workers……..unless Fitbit doesn’t feel shift workers fit in their demographic

  • My first time to track sleep and post here, so “bear with me.” 🙂 So, what can we do with the data? I am sleeping enough to meet my 7 hour goal, but what do I do about the restless and awake data? Does the app suggest things I just have not seen? Thank you. Second comment. I push a stroller on my 2-mile walks, but because I have to keep both hands on the stroller bar 95% of the time, how should I change something to make the steps be accurate?

  • My Alta is reporting that, although I am sleeping for a total of 8+ hours each night, I am only getting about 50% actual sleep. Does this just mean I am moving my hand a lot? When I first started using it, I seemed to get more restful sleep, but the last couple of weeks, this has changed.I am tired, but there is a lot going on in my life to explain that, even with good sleep.How do I know if this is something I should see my doctor about?

  • I bought a Charge HR No problem reaching 10,000 steps each day. I was told there isn’t a fit bit that can track my lap swimming so I am missing a piece of tracking my exercise twice a week when I swim 3/4 mile. Is there a fit bit that will track laps and is there any recourse for the Fitbit I purchased so I can get one that will track my swimming? If not can I enter my swimming into the app so my swimming counts?

    • Hi Betsy! Charge HR is not designed for swimming activities as it is not swim-proof. However, Flex 2 is! It is our first-ever swim-proof tracker. The SmartTrack feature on Flex 2 recognizes and records swims that are at least 10 minutes long. Flex 2 automatically tracks the duration of your swim and the number of laps you complete. To learn more, check out the Fitbit Flex 2 product page.

      In regards to logging swimming with the app, you most certainly can! If you tap on the exercise tile>stopwatch icon (top right)>log and then type swim, you can enter in duration and distance to record a manual log of your swim. Hope this gives you the insight you need!

  • How does the Fitbit make you get a good night sleep (as per the title of this article)? You should explain this functionality if you are marketing it that way

  • The sleep tracking says I only sleep an hour and some min I am a restless sleeper and up several times. Ì think it has correctly tracked 2 times.

  • I’ve been satisfied with my Blaze. My sleep tracker lets me know that I am not sleeping as much as I thought—-I’m pretty restless.

    Because of the information I get from the tracking, I make a conscious effort to take naps, getting the full rest I need.

  • My new Fitbit Blaze is worse than my original Fitbit Charge HR.
    The alarm is horrible and never wakes me up. The HR worked every time!
    Very disappointed.

  • I have a Fitbit One and wear it in a pocket of my jeans. I remove my jeans before going to bed and the Fitbit remains in my pocket. When I check the Dashboard it shows how I slept the night before!!! How does it know how I slept if I do not wear it to bed???? Very confused here and hope that there is an answer.

  • I’ve had my Charge HR for about 3 weeks now and it is logging my sleep quite accurately. I usually lie in bed for 10 to 30 minutes watching TV and then when I am ready to sleep, I turn off the TV and roll over. I was concerned that it would log as sleep the time that I am awake watching TV, but so far, it hasn’t. It also aligns pretty well with how well I felt that I slept. When I awaken in the middle of the night for a while tossing and turning, the next morning I could see these periods in the sleep log. I might add that I am still using the old dashboard.

  • I am new to Fitbit. So far very happy. I am forced to do my 10K steps per day. I don’t want to be a loser. We are doing a healthy challenge with my 19 yr son who gave me the Fitbit for Christmas.

  • I love my Fitbit it is the best thing my girl s got me I no haw much sleep I get and wen I have to go for a walk it is soso great thank you

  • I’ve enjoyed my gift of a Flex from my daughter, and I’m happy with what it does for me–not being a fit-geek any more, I don’t sweat the fine details of my exercise, and it seems to track my sleep okay. I’m still learning about the data gathering the Flex accomplishes, but is there a way to “turn on” a way to identify and track my naps? They are a key part of my total sleep. Thanks….

  • I wish you would post TWO versions of all your recommendations! Some of us do NOT have a cellphone (by choice) and it seems none of the apps pertain to a PC.

  • how on earth will tracking my sleep improve it? these “tools” do nothing but track the fact that i don’t sleep enough.

  • While I’m happy with the information I do get on sleep, I’m disappointed the sleep graph doesn’t display a breakdown of the actual times of awake & restlessness. I think a record of that would be helpful in identifying causes and making adjustments for better sleep.

  • I received an e-mail “Tools to get your best rest”. The first step to set sleep goal is to open app and tap on “How did you sleep” in my dashboard. Well, there is no “How did you sleep” in my dashboard. Now what??!!

  • I had my fitbit for Christmas and I was hoping to get much better information about my sleep. I am disappointed – my wife’s alternative product provides much more useful data on quality of sleep. The fitbit deems that staying still equals sleep – I know the data produced is not very accurate. Also the title of the article is misleading – the tools won’t actually improve the quality of my sleep

  • I don’t have a problem with the hours calculated or the times aware, but can you tell me what constitutes “restless” activity? I have been “restless” 12 to 22 times a night for the last week. Thanks.

    • Yea, I’m curious about that too. Mine has said I was “restless” up to 27 times per night. That would be “restless” about every 17 minutes. (Note: It said I was “restless” 20+ times Sunday night even though I wasn’t even wearing the Fitbit that night. I’m starting to think these things have a glitch. It is a shame, because I specifically bought it for the sleep tracking.

  • I went to bed at 8 pm and woke up at 3 am. Which means I should have slept about 7 hours. But my Fitbit says that I slept almost 11 hours. This is the first time that the Fitbit was totally wrong. Do you know how to fix this or why this happened? Thanks.

  • I love my fitbit Alta it’s brilliant. I’ve had no problems with my sleep tracking or steps it’s great my son has the Alta and my daughter and now my sister-in-law really wants one. Hope everyone gets theirs sorted and enjoys it as much as we do.

  • I love the idea of tracking my sleep quality and have worn my FitBit Charge to bed a few times, but honestly I find it uncomfortable wearing it while sleeping! I’m a side/stomach sleeper and tend to slip my FitBit wrist/arm under my head, which wakes me up! Is it a matter of getting used to it? Anyone else with the same experience?

    • Anonymous, I had the Alta for awhile, and it did not bother me while I slept. However, I recently switched to the Charge 2 and it does bother me. The Charge 2 is not all that much bigger than the Alta, but I am more conscious of it, and I sometimes sweat underneath the Charge’s band. I didn’t have that problem with the Alta.

  • It’s important to note the qualifier; fit bit does not replace a professional diagnosis. I know why I have insomnia and need take severe measures. Whereas the sleep monitoring is interesting, unlike other uses for the fit bit there is no way to change habits (eg, take more steps if step count is low, exercise more if exercise is low, exercise harder if heart rate zone stays low). Perhaps links to healthy sleep habits (eg sleep routine, meditation, etc) might help some.

  • Where does this article explain how to “Get a Good Night’s Sleep with Fitbit’s New Sleep Tools”? It briefly tells you how to turn on the sleep tools and the information you get from it, but it does not explain how to utilize that information to get a good nights sleep.

  • I think my Fitbit has a glitch. For the last 2 nights, I have forgotten to wear it while I slept, however it still logged the time I allegedly slept, and somehow logged how many times I woke up. I’m not sure how it could manage to track these things while sitting on the counter, or in my purse. I may be returning this FitBit. I specifically bought it for the sleep function, which does not appear to be working correctly.

  • I can only see the top half of the numbers on my sleep log. Is anyone else having that problem? Is there a way to fix it? It makes reading data extremely difficult. Thanks.

  • My app is now showing the sleep stages section, however over the past 2 nights it just states “no stages” – how can I change this so it calculates my sleep stages?

    • I had the same problem but I set a time to go to bed and a time for how long I wanted to sleep and when I get up. It should remind you that you need to go to bed and then it will start tracking it.

  • Personnal I don’t use it during the night, it’s in the drawer. I don’t need it to know I’m having a rubbish sleep. At the moment I’m having restless legs at night so I know when I’m pacing the floor!!!

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