Bluetooth low energy wireless comms IC gives fitness monitor extra kick
Various studies have shown that hyperthermia (body temperature greatly above normal = 37.5ºC or over, as opposed to hypothermia which is body temperature greatly below normal = less than 35.0ºC) can adversely affect both physical performance and reduced the benefits of exercise.
The Spree Fitness Monitor is the world’s first product to recognize this fact and in conjunction with a free Spree app running on any Bluetooth v4.0 (which includes Bluetooth low energy as a hallmark feature) enabled smartphone or tablet enables users to monitor their optimal temperature-movement-heart-rate workout zone in real time.
In operation, all measurement technologies are integrated into a small ‘Performance Optimization Device’ or ‘POD’ that fits securely into a water-resistant silicone elastic headband that the end user wears (and indeed additionally benefits from functioning) like a traditional sweatband.
All three sets of biometric information (body temperature, movement, and heart-rate) are then obtained from the forehead via a thermistor (an electronics device whose resistance precisely varies in response to thermal change) for temperature, a ‘photoplethysmograph’ for heart-rate (an optical blood volume measurement technology employed in most emergency room pulse oximeters), and a triple-axis accelerometer for motion.
Hothead Technology claims that Spree is the most advanced personal fitness monitor in the world and far more accurate than existing wrist or foot worn devices, without the discomfort (especially for women) of heart-rate chest straps.
"Body temperature is a critical physical training and performance component, yet no other company or fitness monitor in the market today is doing temperature," commented Steve Swaim, Director of Operations at Hothead Technologies. "Yet over-heating not only reduces the benefits of a workout and destroys peak endurance performance, but can also put the body in serious harm’s way: you are actually physiologically doing harm to your body when working out too hot."
"In addition, temperature gives the most accurate calorie burn rate it is possible to obtain and by including temperature with motion and heart-rate it is now possible [using our app] to visually see and continuously remain within the most optimal training or performance zone."
"In addition to monitoring temperature, one of most interesting aspects of this application is the way in which it converges the ability to measure several separate fitness parameters into a single device," explained Geir Langeland, Nordic Semiconductor’s Director of Sales & Marketing.
Visit Hothead Technologies at www.HotheadTechnologies.com
Visit Nordic Semiconductor at www.nordicsemi.com