Devices

This category deals with things that can be worn, held, touched, etc. Examples of this would be any wearable computer, specifically a fitness tracker or even an iPhone.

Top 4 Fitness Video Games

There are those of us who need that extra level of mental stimulation to help motivate us to exercise. Fitness video games can be a cool way to accomplish that. Here’s the SelfwareSource list of the top 4 fitness video games.

Fitness Video Game: Wii Fit Plus (Wii)

Wii Fit Plus, from Nintendo, is a welcome improvement from its predecessor as it features 15 new balance games and 6 new strength training. It allows you to customize your exercise routines to focus on specific body parts; and if you are “too busy”, you have the option of choosing between 20-, 30-, or 40-minute workouts. And just like the original, it uses the same scale-like controller, the Balance Board, to calculate your weight and Body Mass Index (BMI).  Although it doesn’t go beyond yoga and muscle activities, it’s still one of the most effective games in the market today in aiding you to improve your balance and strength. Overall it’s a fun game and an excellent alternative to gyms and fitness clubs.


Price: $55


Fitness Video Game: Your Shape: Fitness Evolved (Xbox 360)

Touted as the most impressive fitness game for the Xbox 360, Your Shape: Fitness Evolved is a controller-free, fitness simulation game that doesn’t disappoint. This interactive fitness product offers an assortment of cardio and muscle routines that are especially designed to suit your fitness requirements. It employs the remarkable Microsoft Kinect Sensor to ‘see’ you clearly by tracking more than 50,000 points on your body. It also calculates your body size and structure by utilizing a hand-motion menu to enter pertinent details like age, weight, and exercise habit. This is to ensure that you don’t exercise beyond what your body can handle. Your Shape Fitness Evolved is easy to follow, and gives you instant and accurate feedback.


Price: $35

Fuelband Rating


Fitness Video Game: EA Sports Active 2 (Xbox 360, PS3, Wii)

With its wireless control system that tracks your movement and monitors your performance, EA Sports Active 2 is a powerful tool designed for people who are serious about getting fit. Featuring arm and leg motion sensors that stay out of the way during training, EA Sports Active 2 has over 70 exercises that help you improve your agility, coordination, and muscle endurance. With a number of activities that target upper- and lower-body, and cardio, it enables you to create a personalized training program to suit your needs. It also monitors your heart rate and has a virtual personal trainer that guides you every step of the way and gives you that extra motivational boost.


Price: $30


Fitness Video Game: The Biggest Loser Ultimate Workout (Xbox 360, Wii)

Whether you are a fan of the television series or not, The Biggest Loser Ultimate Workout is an exciting exercise simulation game that is sure to kick you off the couch. Making an appearance in two of these interactive and dynamic games are the show’s hardcore trainers, Jillian Michaels and Bob Harper. The product features more than 125 exercises in various categories such as upper body, lower body, core, cardio, and yoga. And just like the show, there are no mini games here for casual challenges – only serious workouts. Also, the Xbox 360 with Kinect version offers a number of exciting features to optimize your workout experience like video diaries and a supportive network of online workout friends.


Price: $15


Staying fit is a commitment. But thanks to these fitness video games, you can now break a sweat in a fun, convenient, and effective way (without having to go to the meet market…I mean gym).

Best Fitness Trackers

Baby Pushups

Lloyd at ~2 years

One of the most annoying things about medical technology is how good it’s getting. It seems every day some new piece of research done with state-of-the-art technology tells us exactly how unhealthy we are. To no surprise, we have now been a putting quite a premium on our health and fitness. Here at SelfwareSource, we’re a big believer in using technology to help better yourself. Should you find a use for a pedometer or accelerometer, the following is our review of the best fitness trackers on the market.

Fuelband: Best Fitness Tracker


Nike+ FuelBand could just be the right gadget to kick you off the couch. This pedometer doesn’t just track calories, steps, and time; it uses motivational tactics to get you moving by measuring Nike Fuel – Nike’s measurement of activity. Set your goal and the FuelBand will determine your progress. It features a row of LEDs that changes from red to green as you get closer to the target, making it a pretty effective motivational device.

The beauty of FuelBand lies in its simplicity. It features single button scrolling with two rows of LEDs – a larger one for the readouts and a small one for the Nike Fuel tracker. Due to its circular design that snugly clings on to your wrist, it stays out of the way when you’re breaking a sweat. And it’s water resistant too! It has Bluetooth capability, and on one end of the device hides a USB connector enabling you to sync data to a computer to view your peaks and valleys. Its $149 price tag may be hefty for some, but if you need that extra motivational boost, the Nike+ FuelBand is your ideal tracker.

Technology: Three axis accelerometer or “oxygen kinetics
Price: $200

Fuelband Rating



Fitbit: Best Fitness Tracker


Fitbit Ultra is the smallest fitness tracker in the market today. Don’t let the size fool you though; it packs a lot of punch inside its compact, easy to carry exterior. Fitbit is a sophisticated gadget that effortlessly tracks steps taken, calories burned, distance travelled, and even stairs climbed! On top of that, it also tracks sleep, which is one of the most important factors in fitness.

This easy-to-wear gadget comes with a small base station that connects to a PC or MAC thru a USB cable. Or you can go wireless in transferring your data. Aside from having Android and iOS mobile apps that allow you to log workouts and meals, it also features engaging Web-based analytical tools in tracking your progress. One can log on Fitbit.com and benefit from a supportive community of friends or join public groups to broaden your knowledge on fitness. At a $99.95 price, Fitbit definitely ranks up there!

Technology: Accelerometer
Price: ~$100
 



Xtrail: Best Fitness Tracker

Turn your iPhone into your instant fitness manager that’s as easy as ready-set-go. Xtrail is a no-fuss GPS-enabled fitness tracker. Tap, tap, and you’re off. And you don’t need to buy a separate device, all you need to do is download the Xtrail app and you’re good to go.

Especially designed for runners and cyclists, Xtrail accurately measures the distance, speed, time, pace, calories, altitude, and climb, which is then displayed in clean, configurable widgets for easy viewing. Xtrail also features a detailed map and an interactive graph for more convenient performance analysis. And if you must brag, you can share it in Facebook, Twitter, or email via the popular GPX file format. Plus, this intuitive app retails at $4.99, which is a fantastic deal for the things it can do.

Technology: GPS
Price: $4.99
 



MOTOACTV: Best Fitness Tracker


To all the dedicated athletes and genuine gym rats who have been looking for the ultimate exercise companion, MOTOACTV is perfect for you. Featuring a very macho design of metal construction in all-black scheme with its water resistant and scratch-proof postage-stamp touch-screen, this gadget is in a league of its own. With 40 different kinds of exercise methods such as Running, Walking, Cycling, Elliptical, and Step Machine, as well as more exotic ones like Gymnastics, Snow Boarding, and even Yard Work, the MOTOACTV can handle any fitness task you throw at it.

The internal accelerometer of the MOTOACTV functions as its pedometer. Aside from being Android-powered, it utilizes GPS, Bluetooth, music and online analytics to optimize the workout experience. You can opt between WiFi and cellular connection in uploading your workout stats to its web portal to see how far you’ve come. Plus, it can even suggest playlist to further rev you up. And with $149.99, you’ll have a cutting-edge fitness tracker, a handy music device, and an Android powered watch all rolled into one. It’s like having your own personal trainer and DJ!

Technology: GPS
Price: ~$140



So whether or not you think that a fitness tracker is for you, these are our pics for the best fitness tracker. Overall, Nike Fuelband wins for us. But again, this technology is very new. One this is for sure though, fitness trackers are on the rise. The tech behind these gadgets will only get better, and you can bet Melvin and Lloyd will be reviewing them right here @Selfwaresource with little to no actual exercise done.

Google Glasses and Augmented Reality

I came across these Google Glasses for the first time today. It’s basically an augmented reality (AR) head-mounted-device (HMD). In the real world, these are called SAG’s, or “sweet-ass glasses”. Some more sweet ass wearables, (infographic provided by VoucherCoders.co.uk). The possibilities that this technology holds seem endless.

With respect to health and fitness, imagine mapping a jog on the fly. Or, as a football player, run drills ANYWHERE without cones. All the while monitoring your heart rate and blood pressure on the top corner of your screen.

Project Glass, as it’s called at Google’s X Lab, might also not be the only player. Earlier this year, Apple filed a patent that they described as a, “display resolution increase with mechanical actuation.”

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D7TB8b2t3QE[/youtube]

P.S. The idea of “wearable computers” was first toyed with when Edward O. Thorp created a device for increasing odds in roulette.

 

 

 

Now: When Personal Technology and Health Fitness Collide

For years the concept of healthcare technology revolved around giant companies purchasing expensive commercial equipment, ocean-deep research and development funding by Fortune 500’s (Pfizer, for example, plans to spend $6 billion in R&D in 2012) and weird niche gadgets that only a few people knew about.

Welcome to today, where technology applications are brought to us consumers in waves. Virtually all aspects of our lives can be monitored or complimented by technology, and with that comes a daunting responsibility – to utilize our available resources to the utmost potential, all the while maintaining a healthy balance of information and care-free living.

This site will revolve around the intersection of health fitness and personal technology, because at no other time in our history have we had the ability to leverage such a unique platform of data-driven, socially interactive, and relatively fun & easy applications.

We’ll also try to throw in some random pointers how to let technology work for you, so that you have more free time to be human.

Enjoy, comment or get in touch with us.

 

 

 

 

 

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