Health and fitness are in. More people are paying attention to their eating and exercise habits, which is contributing to the rise of wearable fitness technology. This type of tech refers to any device that can be worn by consumers and delivers information about your physical conditions. The market for wearable products is predicted to rise from $14.0 billion to $34.2 billion by 2020. With countless gadgets, tracking your activities has never been easier. Whether you are interested in monitoring your activity levels or just want to lead a better lifestyle, some research is required. Do motion trackers actually work? Which brand and style is the best for me? These are the questions you should be asking yourself before making any investments in your well-being.
From brands like Fitbit, Garmin, Misfit, TomTom, and Moov, it’s easy to be overwhelmed when you’re trying to find the perfect fit. But this list isn’t limited to just trackers. Smartwatches are also rising in the fitness industry and are even expected to make up half of all wearable tech (which includes cameras and virtual and augmented reality headsets) sold this year.
Whichever product you choose depends on a number of criteria, among which include your budget, exercise type and personal style. The trackers I mentioned all measure similar aspects: heart rate, number of steps taken, calories burned, stairs climbed and hours of sleep. But each device has its own features that set them apart from others. Want a broad overview of your physical abilities? Try any Fitbit. Avid runner? Check out the Apple Watch Series 2 with its built-in GPS. Love swimming? Look into Garmin Swim. What’s more is that some of these devices are also accompanied by apps and helpful coaching to help you get the most out of their use. During workouts, voice coaches can motivate and guide you using data collected from your tech equipment.
The production of sporty tech is constantly expanding. Gauging your robustness is no longer restricted to wrist-based trackers. You can now monitor your health and vigor through clothing and body bands. Products such as the OMsignal OMbra, Athos gear and Sensoria sportswear are taking monitoring to the next level. Everything from sports bras, shirts, shorts, leggings and even socks have the technology to provide feedback on your movements to help you improve and be at your best performance. If you want to try something different from a typical wristband, the Myzone belt offers a different fit and comfort, all the while giving the same results.
Top left: the OMbra. Top right: Athos shirt. Bottom left: Sensoria fitness socks. Bottom right: Myzone belt.
I personally had a Fitbit Charge and I enjoyed it for several reasons. Wearing the wristband added to my athleisure game (athletic wear that can be worn outside of the gym) and I learned a lot about myself using my health patterns. Unfortunately, not many of my friends had a Fitbit so motivation on that end was definitely lacking. On the bright side, as more people buy wearable tech, friendly competition will surely intensify.
Fitness tech can truly be an asset when used properly and can help you to be the best version of yourself. They are useful for seeing your progress over time and assessing which areas can be further developed. Depending on the technology, information will be provided on how you can reduce risks of injury and maximize your efforts using optimal activity zones. They also give you the extra push you need with regular reminders and celebrations for when you reach your goals.