Bad physical habits, such as incorrect posture can affect our physical well-being and cause backache, pinched nerves and chronic fatigue. A new Kickstarter device promises to help us solve that with wearable tech, in the form of smart insoles.
Developed by health experts in Austria, the Stapp One insole will fit into your regular shoe and uses state-of-the-art textile sensors to map your whole body, collecting data about your posture, distribution of weight, movement, and location. This information is then sent to a connected smartphone app and presented in an easy to understand manner, along with suggestions to help correct these issues.
Although other fitness trackers gather much of the same information, what sets Stapp One apart is that it detects postural problems and helps you fix them. It can also pick up skeletal deformities. Stapp One says it can recognize and help correct neck pain, back pain, foot pain, restricted movement, foot deformities, misalignment of the spine, and musculoskeletal weakness.
An added bonus is that you can go for a run or walk without your phone and your insoles will record your data on its internal memory and will automatically sychronize with the app when your smartphone is nearby.
“It all started with back pain that got worse every day at the desk or on the plane,” Peter Krimmer, managing director of Strapp One, told Digital Trends. “During a lunch with my friend, the physicist Philip Olbrich, together we had the flash of inspiration to measure the daily movements with a footprint — using an intelligent insole. We started searching for a podiatrist and got lucky within only a few weeks. When I met the renowned Austrian podiatrist Sylvia Strell for the first time, we knew that this was going to work. We ‘just’ had to put Sylvia’s brain into the little CPU within our insoles.”
The technology is the result of years of collaboration with partners in the fields of podiatry, biomechanics, sports medicine, and textile physics, said Kimmer.
If you’re interested in getting the Strapp One, you can currently pledge money for one on Kickstarter. But be aware of the risks of crowdfunding campaigns first, as laid out by Digital Trends in this article. Prices start at 189 euros (R2 750), with shipping set to take place in August.