Fitness Tracker Weight Lifting

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Technology is everywhere. From TVs to laptops to iPads to wristwatches, it seems there is no haven safe from the bombardment of up to the minute data and information. The gym used to be one of those sanctuaries where there was nothing but you and the weights, a one on one battle for supremacy.

All that has changed…

In this new age of data analysis and measurement, a simple stopwatch, paper, and pen is not sufficient for measuring your gains. That seems so 1980!

What we have today are set/rep trackers on phones and all kinds of fitness wearables to measure heart rate and energy expenditure. Step counters and heart rate monitors were the first generation of hi-tech devices entering the fitness world, but those are now a thing of the past. While they were effective, somewhat, for tracking steady state cardio exercise, nothing accurately tracked calories burned during weight lifting or high intensity activities.

Until now!

Weight Lifting Wearables

Runners of all varieties have enjoyed the luxuries of GPS tracking watches for years, but none of these helped the average Joe who goes to the gym and bangs out 10 sets of squats.

Skulpt Aim

Skulpt’s AIM looks like it will be most things weight lifters want

The fitness gods have smiled on the gym bros and finally blessed us with several options that not only track our sets and reps, but can check our form and accurately track our calorie burn from the workout.

Don’t believe us? Read on to see a few of the trail-blazers in this techno-centric world…

  • Skulpt Aim

    This little beauty is for the gym nut who loves to lift weights and see how his muscles are changing in regards to muscle/fat ratio. The device is placed on one of 24 muscle groups after a workout and detects body fat as well as muscle quality.

    This is accomplished by something Skulpt terms electrical impedance myography, or EIM. When the device is placed on a muscle, a small electric current is passed through the muscle and surrounding fat tissue. As the charge flows through the muscle, the app tracks the its path and determines the make-up of the muscle.[1] Over time, you will be able to track changes in muscle to fat ratio and gauge progress!

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  • Atlas

    If running electrical currents through all of your muscles isn’t your cup of tea, the perhaps this wristband tracker is.

    The Atlas Wristband identifies which exercise you are performing as well as counts the sets and reps performed. On top of that, it measures calories burned, heart rate, distances traveled, amount of laps you swam, speed of your workout, and critiques your form![2]

    As if that is not enough, it provides coaching tips for you. For example, “you’ve trained chest three days in a row. Go do some squats to work those chicken legs!” Ok, it may not say those exact words, but it will remind you to not neglect body parts if you workout the same muscle group too many days consecutively.

  • PUSH Band

    PUSH Band

    The PUSH Band is based out of Europe, but is finally available in the US

    PUSHStrength touts its band as providing “scientifically-validated and actionable metrics that can help you improve your training.”[3]. It claims to be the first tracking device that measures your true strength. The band sends real-time data to your mobile phone and provides instant feedback, allowing you to view a number of metrics to improve your workout right then and there.

    Beta-tested by various professional sports teams in the NFL, NHL and NBA, PUSH’s band measure power and velocity of each exercise performed and calculates a Total Work metric for each exercise and workout. From there, these metrics are analyzed to tell you where you can increase weight or intensity in some fashion.

    With these numbers in hand, you can track progress, set new goals or get coaching recommendations for how to take your workouts to the next level!

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  • GymWatch

    GymWatch

    The GymWatch is not actually a watch, but armbands have never stopped us before

    The German-engineered GymWatch debuted in stores late last year and allows users to monitor and track reps and exercises of static and dynamic weight lifting moves. Through a variety of metrics and analytics, it can measure the amount of strength you exert or full power potential of a given muscle.[4]

    Although this device is called GymWatch, it’s actually intended to be worn around the arm or leg, not the wrist. It measures the full range of motion of any of the 900+ exercises in its database and tracks your form to make sure you are targeting the intended muscles. It also can tell if you’re doing full reps or partial reps and whether the exercise is weighted or unweighted (Chest press vs push-up).

    Finally, the app included takes all of the data and analyses it for real time feedback and coaching tips. It will design a detailed training plan for you so that you never overtrain one area of the body (biceps) and undertrain others (LEGS!).

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Cost?!

Ok, so we have a few viable options that seem to accurately track our workouts and coach us along our fitness journey, but nothing in life is free.

These devices may not be as expensive as you think, depending on how hardcore you are about your fitness endeavors.

At the time of press, the cost for each of the units is:

  • GymWatch: $159
  • Push: $189
  • Aim: $199
  • Atlas: $249 (Pre-order only at this time)

But you can use PricePlow to see if any of the prices have changed:

Fitness Trackers

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Some may scoff at the price tag, but the FitBit Charge retails for $129 and doesn’t provide nearly the detail in regards to weight lifting exercise as these four options do.

Wrap Up

Are these devices really effective?

Some may not be sold on their claims, but the fact that they have been vetted and are currently in use by many professional sports teams lends a decent amount of credibility to the claims.

Ultimately, you have to decide if this is something worth your time and effort. If you are a dedicated fitness buff who is always looking for that extra edge to improve your physique and workouts, then this is an investment well worth your time and money. If, on the other hand, you are an occasional gym goer, and really just want to not seem grossly out of shape, then you are fine just tracking sets/reps with paper and pen or on your phone.

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