Hi-Tech Apparel: A Different Type of Wearables
Fitness is free. Exercising is free. But it’s always more fun with a little bit of technology, right? We know about the wearables: trackers, monitors, smart watches, etc. But you don’t have to settle just for a tracker or smartwatch you wear around your wrist. The digital trend has spread to apparel. Smart clothes are clothing that monitors the wearer’s physical condition. There are smart shirts, bodysuits, etc., that provide biometric data like pulse rate, temperature, heart rhythm, physical movement, etc. This information is then transmitted to an app in real time.
According to a MarketsandMarkets, an independent research firm, the wearable fitness tech market is expected to reach $12.4 billion in the United States by 2022.
Following is a quick summary of different types of smart apparel, sunglasses, etc., and an example of each.
Interested in a shirt that monitors your body movement? Look at the e-Skin Shirt from Xenoma. This compression fit, machine washable shirt has 14 strain sensors strategically placed on the shirt and it will monitor your body movements like bending, twisting and stretching. Some smart shirts also monitor calories burned during an activity.
Smart shoes have a built-in chip that will track and store running metrics. One example of this type of shoe is the UA Speedform Gemini 2.1 (Under Armour). This shoe trend is only heating up. Some industry reports indicate this smart shoe trend will continue to grow through 2022. These shoes typically feature a Bluetooth accessory that will link activity and/or location to a smartphone app. There are even shoes that have the capability of ordering take-out and pausing live TV! (I’ve never associated my shoes with ordering pizza, but hey, progress!)
Eyewear is now capable of providing brain-sensing and cognitive training technology. This brain-sensing technology includes:
- UV sensors for both UVA and UVB
- Temperature gauge
- Pressure sensor
The Salifo Group offers such eyewear, Lowdown Focus Mpowered by Muse, claiming to offer consistent mental training practice. This is considered the first mental performance-enhancing eyewear on the market.
These are a few examples of smart apparel. See below for a list of companies offering these items. The benefit of smart apparel is that we’re already used to wearing clothes so unlike the trackers and monitors that need to be attached to us, remembering to put on smart apparel isn’t as difficult as remembering to put on your smartwatch, smart tracker, monitor, etc. Now, getting and staying fit is only a matter of pulling on a shirt, putting on shoes and wearing sunglasses!
For further reading:
Xenoma e-Skin Shirt
Muse Brain-Sensing Headband
Digitsole – Connected Footwear – Smart shoes – Smart insoles
Level smart glasses can track your fitness and look good enough to …
Top 13 Smart Shoes The Combine the Best of Technology and Fashion
Image Credit: Business Korea