Innovation That Matters

The app provides coaching and guides in addition to individualised exercise and stretching routines | Photo source Vimeo / Eric Kim, Jae Hyeon Lee, Nemin Jin

Smart exercise device for sedentary lifestyles

Health & Wellbeing

A concept smart device helps those who lead sedentary lifestyles to move around more, with a hand-held exercise coach

Spotted: According to the World Health Organisation, between 60 to 85 per cent of people in the world lead sedentary lifestyles. This inactivity doubles the risk of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and obesity, and increases the risks of colon cancer, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, depression and anxiety. As the coronavirus pandemic took hold, this situation only got worse, as many of us got out of the habit of exercise. A trio of designers wants to help us become more active with a smart stretching device called Root. 

Designers Eric Kim, Jae Hyeon Lee and Nemin Jin created the conceptual handheld device, which would incorporate smart technology and uses similar movement tracking to smart devices like the Apple watches. The difference is that Root is designed to be handheld, to track and analyse individual movements and make suggestions for personalised stretching routines and exercises that take into account each user’s individual needs. 

Users first pair Root with an accompanying app using Bluetooth, then update their profile. They will then be shown stretching routines and exercises, along with integrated coaching and in-app guides. Integrated sensors in Root ensure correct body placement and movement. The device is the size of a pen, and the minimal display ensures users focus on movement, not the screen. 

The device will also remind users when it’s time to get out from behind their desk for a stretch. It includes exercises and activities that can be done seated – giving users the option of a quick stretch between calls and helping to add movement back into the daily routine. 

While Root is still in the concept stage, there are a number of other innovations whose aim is to help users exercise more or stay healthier, and many of these are aimed at employers. Springwise has recently covered an app that lets employers monitor and support employee mental health and another that rewards employee exercise with tree planting. 

Written By: Lisa Magloff

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