Even though fitness trackers are still the most popular wearables for sports, athletes are slowly embracing smart sports clothes as well.
Apparel with tech enhancements are continuing to gain traction with average consumers, especially for those techies looking for performance feedback from activities such as fitness training, running, and cycling.
So, what should an early adopting fitness fan wear, top to bottom, to collect activity data through clothes?
1. SMART UNDERWEAR
Ladies first. There are already several smart sports bras on the market that mainly measure heart rates.
MyZone Sports Bra has a built-in heart rate monitor, plus it is comfortable and offers support. It connects to a smartphone via Bluetooth and can share data with phones, smartwatches, and even gym screens. The bra pairs with its app on the smartphone, which uses a game-based platform that rewards effort with points for any activity.
The OMsignal Bra records running distances, breathing rates and monitors heart rate. It is so smart that it can tell when you have recovered enough and can head back to the gym! Also, it can be linked up with the majority of fitness platforms.
Victoria’s Secret Heart-Rate Monitor Compatible Sports Bra is a basic smart bra measuring heart rate (HR).
2. SMART T-SHIRTS & SHORTS
Ralph Lauren PoloTech Shirt, from the famous luxury clothes brand, integrates smart clothing with OM Signal. The shirt can track heart and breathing rates, thanks to bio-sensing silver wiring, plus provides feedback on the user’s training via their smartphone or tablet. It sets each user’s optimal heart rate zone and pushes them to reach that range. The sensors track calories burned while measuring the intensity of the workout, heart rate, stress rate and more.
The Hexoskin smart shirt is able to monitor the wearer’s heart rate, breathing rate and volume, steps with cadence, calories, and sleep. It connects via Bluetooth to iOS and Android devices, and it already has a second generation of smart garments that connect to third party apps like Strava, RunKeeper, and Endomondo. The battery can last up to 30 hours.
Tight fitting shirts called Radiate track muscle use, by changing color when muscles get hot in training. During the training in the gym, the user can see what part of his body is currently doing the most work.
Athos shirt and shorts are tight fitting EMG sensor-filled garments that can detect heart rate, breathing rate, and muscle activity. The device is situated in a small pocket of the garment and lasts for 20 hours. It sends data to the smartphone but also features a 6-axis accelerometer for measuring movement during a workout.
The Lumo Run shorts also have sensors capable of tracking running metrics including cadence, bounce, ground contact time, braking, pelvic rotation and stride length. They’ll even offer real-time audio feedback via the app and headphones.
OMsignal Biometric Smart Shirt
This smart wearable tech shirt is made of conductive yarn and quick dry fabric that incorporates 5 connectors for data reading and then streams live to your mobile phone app via Bluetooth. This ensures real time activity data or can store your info for up to 30 hours. This biometric shirt measures Heart Rate, Breathing Rate, Push Score (intensity of activity during strength training), Steps, Calorie Count, and post workout data tracking personal progress and goals. The shirt is machine washable and has a battery life the company claims can last 10 workouts or 1 day of continuous use before requiring a recharge which seems like more than enough juice to get your through a normal week of training.
3. SMART SHOES
The fuss around smart shoes exists until 2012 when Nike+ launched their first product of this kind. After that numerous manufacturer tried to make a hit smart shoes, but mostly failed. However, experts say that smart shoes have a big „come back“ to the market.
One of the main flagships is the Altra IQ. There are embedded sensors in each shoe that provide real-time stride analysis. Besides superb insights and data, it also provides feedback through messages via user’s watch, phone, or earbuds that train you to optimize their biomechanics.
The UA SpeedForm Gemini 2 Record Equipped “smart sneakers” measure wearers’ distance traveled, stride length, and pace, similar to older versions of smart shoes. However, it can connect to a similar Under Amour activity tracker, app, and weight scale.
Fitness and Health wearable technology brands will continue to provide an increasing number of choices for consumers in the coming months. We expect there to be an escalation in terms of both functionality and integration as new products launch allowing the consumer to personalize their products to fit their daily needs.
We recommend you check these products out if you plan to get out and have an active healthy summer. We will continue to bring you the latest in wearable tech news and information.