Health and Fitness tech 2019
For many of us, the idea of forming a deeper connection with our bodies through means of tech seems somewhat contradictory.
But there’s a lot of evidence to suggest there are actually a number of great benefits in incorporating a gadget or two which allow us to make healthy changes to our daily routine and improve our quality of life.
Some of the best health and fitness tech comes in wearable form, helping to measure the bodies activity levels and translate signals into easy to digest data.
We’ve put together a list of a few exciting pieces of health and fitness tech that have landed this year and have caught our attention.
Top Picks: Health and Fitness Tech 2019
We can all agree a good nights sleep makes all the difference. In fact, it’s just as important as eating healthy and exercise.
The average person is said to spend 26 years of their life asleep. That’s time well spent considering sleep affects your metabolism, immune function and productivity. A lack of sleep can even put you at risk of developing heart disease and increase the likelihood of a stroke.
But more often than not, sleep gets neglected – especially with all those fun swipes, notifications and other ‘pop-ups’ on our screens that we seem to like so much nowadays.
It’s certainly time to implement a bit of discipline in the bedroom, leave those addictive devices on flight mode and away from the bed, so we can drift off for a quality 8 hours.
Ironically, there’s new tech out there that can help you establish a healthy sleep routine based on a number of markers made during your sleep cycle.
One product that’s particularly good is the Oura ring. It’s a small, minimalist and highly accurate tool for measuring your sleep as well as your daily activity levels.
It measures body temperature every minute, comparing values from previous nights to form baseline profile from which to can compare future variations. Temperature measurements can reflect signs of impending sickness, a need to rest, or detect menstrual cycle stages.
Oura also measures your pulse with the use of an infrared lens from the palmar arteries in your finger. Heart rate is one of the most common indicators of recovery. It shows your resting heart rate, as well as how it varies throughout the night, indicating how your body is recovering from exercise, stress and fatigue.
It also measures your activity levels and sets your daily activity goals based on the quality of your sleep and status of recovery. This is useful to help you balance your activities with your rest time.
The Fitbit Versa
If you’re looking for a compact fitness tracking wristwear that provides accurate activity data along with a decent battery life, then the Fitbit Versa is worth a good look.
This lightweight smartwatch is taking the 2019 wearable tech scene by storm, scoring wild reviews across the board after Fitbit showcased this new product at the CES (mecca of tech fairs) annual fair in January.
Fitbit have also chopped away some of the previous flagship’s unnecessary features and focused on improving some of the fundamentals, as well as adding in plenty of nifty extras.
- An all-day activity tracker, so you can keep tabs on your step count, distance covered, active minutes and calories burned with ease. It also reminds you to move – a useful feature for those of us at the desk all day.
- On-screen workouts with Fitbit coach – providing guidance and workout inspiration.
- Swim-proof, with water resistance up to 50m. It even tracks your number of lengths.
- Sleep tracker, so you can monitor your performance in the bedroom, keeping tabs on duration as well as general quality of sleep (light, deep, REM). It even features a silent alarm that wakes you gently by vibration, so you can slip into your 5am workout gear quietly without rousing a cranky bedmate.
- 24/7 heart rate monitor – as well as guided breathing sessions that are personalised based on your heart rate, to help you find a place of calm wherever you are.
- Access your favourite apps as well as the calendar and messages – if you’ve got an android you can even send quick replies.
- Access music without the need of your phone with the use of a 300+ song storage and Deezer.
It’s a fraction of the cost of Apple’s iWatch, with a much better battery (4+ days to the iWatch’s 2). Though you cannot receive calls or use a voice assistant.
A cheaper option still, is the newest addition to the Fitbit family, the Versa Lite. Still aiding you in step count, heart rate, sleep tracking and supporting 15 exercise modes it’s a worthy winner when it comes to saving the pennies.
If you’re not a fan of wearing something around your wrist while exercising, there’s now a range of high tech clothing that provides an even more advanced level of fitness tracking than the popular wristwear models.
Athos make a range of performance garments integrated with lightweight sensors that analyse athletes’ activity and sends the data to a mobile app via Bluetooth.
The app provides a highly detailed breakdown of the individual’s movements in the form of a live view to help them facilitate a stronger mind-muscle connection, and present a valuable insight into each muscle’s power distribution.
It also displays a data split between the left and the right-hand side of the body, identifying areas that are overworking or compensating as a result of poor form.
This tech is now being used by a number of high-level professional sportsmen, providing them with a whole new level of insight into areas of muscular weakness for which they can improve.
For muscle recovery
HYPERICE VYPER 2.0
Using a foam roller is a great way to improve mobility and aid muscle recovery. It’s long been a staple feature when it comes to mobility and stretching and often paired with the characteristic grimace brought on by the rolling out of a painful knot.
Now there’s something on the market called the HYPERICE VYPER 2.0 that said to both reduce the discomfort and be twice as effective in the recovery process. Count us in!
Much like its traditional counterpart, the VYPER 2.0 is compact, portable and easy to use. What sets it apart, is its ability to emit high-frequency vibrations that help work into stiff muscles, improve circulation and reduce the pain associated with myofascial release.
The digitally-controlled vibration frequency can be set at 3 different levels of power, making it customisable to preference and its rechargeable battery allows two hours of usage per charge.