Activity

# Step counter

Beginner | MakeCode, Python | Accelerometer, LED display | Human body, Measurement, Multiplication, Performance tools, Sensors, Variables

## Step 1: Make it

### What is it?

Turn your BBC micro:bit into a step counter (or pedometer) to help you track how active you are - and learn some coding at the same time!

These two videos show you what you'll make and how to code it:

### How it works

• Download the code onto a micro:bit and attach a battery pack.
• Attach the micro:bit and battery pack to your shoe or ankle, place it inside your sock, or just hold it in your hand and shake it as you walk.
• The code uses the micro:bit’s accelerometer sensor input to sense when your leg is moving.
• The code counts how many times the micro:bit has been shaken. It stores this number in a variable called ‘steps’.
• Variables are containers for storing data, which can be accessed and updated while a program is running.
• Every time the micro:bit accelerometer input senses a shake, the program increases the number held in the variable by 1, and shows the new number on the LED display output.

### What you need

• micro:bit (or MakeCode simulator)
• MakeCode or Python editor
• battery pack
• something to attach the micro:bit to your shoe or leg – elastic band, a pipe cleaner, tape or Velcro.

## Step 2: Code it

``````1from microbit import *
2steps=0
3
4while True:
5    if accelerometer.was_gesture('shake'):
6        steps += 1
7        display.show(steps)``````

## Step 3: Improve it

• Modify the code so it shows your current step count when you press a button.
• If you find that the code only counts every other step, modify the code to multiply the ‘steps’ variable by two when it’s displayed.
• Measure the length of your average stride and get your micro:bit to multiply this by the number of steps to calculate the distance you’ve walked.