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Wearable Fitness Technology review

Wearable Fitness Technology review

The Fitbit?
The FuelBand by Nike?
The Jawbone Up?

Have no idea what I’m talking about? Well, wearable fitness technology is taking over your workout. These devices are the next generation of pedometers, keeping track of your movement, helping you stay healthy and providing real-time fitness updates. Think of it like a nagging personal trainer, only on your phone.

This technology evolved out of a collaboration between Nike and Apple in 2006, which led to many competitors in a now crowded fitness segment. They all do about the same thing, and some are even stylish to wear.

The Instant Gratification Factor

These devices allow you to see instant results, even if your body doesn’t reflect it. You know your work is paying off, as the device feeds information to accompanying apps and websites.

Personal trainer and Anytime Fitness General Manager Mandy Schick thinks wearable fitness technology is a great thing for people just starting a fitness routine. It allows them to track their progress, work toward a goal and, ultimately, stay healthier.

Many of the services correspond to online communities where you can see how your results stack up. Apple is also reportedly getting into the mix and developing what some have dubbed the “iWatch.”

This technology has become so popular that national retailer Best Buy has given over precious floor space to create a wearable technology area in its stores.

Personally, I use MapMyRun on my iPhone. It allows me to keep track of my running, gives me detailed stats and allows me to create a routine and goals.

The total cost for the devices ranges from $100 to $200, with many of the companies also offering online communities and fitness support.

It’s All a Game

With more than $25 million in investment, Keas is looking to turn fitness into a game, replacing the company gym membership.

Keas is an employee wellness program that encourages staff to stay fit by rewarding them and turning it into a game among employees. Employees earn virtual points, and those prizes can go toward rewards.

Why the need? Because health care costs have risen by 36 percent from just five years ago.

Keas has been picked up by a slew of Fortune 500 companies and even Delta Dental, which has providers in Columbia.

Of course, the best technology to stay fit is an old-fashioned routine.

One to Follow

With a new season in the SEC taking shape, I’d be remiss not to mention the official Mizzou Football social media accounts. Take a look at its official Instagram account: instagram.com/mizzoufootball. It’s updated daily with photos from behind the scenes.

Apps of the Month

Ready to start a new fitness routine at your office with your friends? Here are some apps that make it fun and rewarding.

GYMPACT:

Want to earn money for staying healthy? Gympact rewards you when you visit the gym at least four times a week. Not able to make it? Face the “lazy tax,” and loose money.

FITOCRACY:

Work out, earn rewards and compete against your friends. Join groups of people looking for the same fitness goals, and get healthier together.

NEXERCISE:

The fitness app for busy people, Nexercise rewards you with badges, social prestige and coupons for working out.

Dillon is the principal and creative director at Hub & Spoke, a growing Columbia-based creative agency.

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