In today’s world, a good pair of sneakers, a wind-proof blouse and a breathing mask for those winter runs, has become insufficient for the average fitness lover. In the time of mobile applications, advanced sensors and tracking software, a smartphone powered by an intelligent platform like iOS or Android, proves to be the most desired tool.
While a mobile phone can be simply used in fitness for its functions and applications, such as distance trackers, diet calculators and other stuff like that, a wide range of fitness accessories has also emerged in the past few years. Nowadays, smartphones can be paired with intelligent sensors, protective cases, specially tailored headphones and even more.
Top 12 fitness accessories for smartphones
The tools described below should be seen as a helpful addition to your fitness set, some being able of performing wonderful things, while others can help protect your body, or other gadgets. Pairing these kind of gear with advanced sensors and intelligent mobile applications may ultimately optimize your body-construction process and increase results.
Described as the “ultimate fitness gadget”, Fitbit One is an intelligent analyzing system based on a lot of sensors, that’s implemented in the form of a conventional USB stick. It’s a versatile, lightweight gadget that comes with Bluetooth 4.0 support and a 3rd party application inclusion, to perform the scope of carefully analyzing your daily routine, even while you sleep.
Measuring a few centimeters long, Fitbit One can accurately track the number of your steps, how many calories were burned in a day and the distance you traveled. Results for all of these functions will be shown on the incorporated display, just like in the picture above. Fitbit One has a partnership with over 20 different fitness applications, which can be used to get even more data out of the device.
Another attractive function is the sleep analyzer, which offers a lot of relevant data to the user, like how much time it was needed to fall asleep, how many times was sleep disrupted and even more. Unfortunately, it costs around $100 and has a battery that lasts only 7 days.
Zensorium Tinke for iPhone
Tinke is a sensorial gadget designed to monitor cardio respiratory health and stress levels. Using a pair of accurate optical sensors, the device can measure how much oxygen travels through blood, simply by analyzing your fingertip. Alongside oxygen levels, the assembly can also detect heart and respiratory rate, all used to build and populate a great database, personalized for each client.
Results collected are sent to an iPhone application, from which the user can then compare its score with other people using the same device. In this way, data can be presented through various timelines, allowing persons to see trends or, even share results on social networks. The module is available in several colors and can be purchased for $199.
Adidas miCouch PACER bundle
Great athletes are not born without a couch and for those who don’t have one yet, the Adidas miCouch PACER bundle can be a great substitute. Using a stride sensor combined with a light heart rate monitor, the package can analyze and carefully estimate the overall distance covered by the runner, while taking a look after several body parameters. Combining all of these with several smartphone functions (like the GPS) will help runners optimize their fitness program.
Another interesting function of miCouch is the personal trainer feature, which works like a virtual, audio-capable trainer that pushes your body towards the limit. Although the voice integrated by Adidas may sound a bit patronizing at first, it can become quite the motivation once you get used to it. All the data gathered can then be uploaded online, where visual graphics and stats are presented visually. Get it for $195.
Sports Tracker Heart Rate Monitor 2
Another heart rate monitor comes from Sports Tracker, and it goes by the name of HRM2. Bluetooth-enabled, this band pairs with the smartphone through the use of a dedicated application (compatible with iOS, Android, Symbian and MeeGo) and reveals how much effort your heart is actually putting into an exercise.
Moreover, modifications can be made and users can set the application to send alerts when they push too much, or too little. Price: $74.99
Headphones and Cases built for Fitness
Taking a smartphone with you and a bunch of sensors is not the perfect set-up for those wishing to take fitness, to another level. As you may well know, music helps you keep focus and for that, a set of Bluetooth headphones will be required. Moreover, weather can be often unexpected and even though it’s sunny outside, keeping a phone inside your lower pockets has become out of fashion and in some cases, annoying (try running with a Samsung Galaxy S3 in shorts).
Headphones for outdoor use
- Motorola SF600 – wireless technology is at its best at Motorola, where the SF600 headset aims to bring wired performance at Bluetooth elegancy. Combine that with a hydrophobic mesh and silicone seals to keep the moisture out, makes this the perfect choice for dreadful weather.
- JayBird Sportsband 2 – this stylish pair of headphones comes in an apple red flavor and it’s guaranteed to offer high usage in training, while making no sacrifice with style, whatsoever. They come with a crystal clear sound quality based on Apt-x and Bluetooth wireless technology for both music and phone calls.
- Motorola SF200 – the wired variant of theSF600, this Motorola model comes with built-in controls and microphone, to let users manage music and calls. It has an comfortable ear cushion and red-black design that makes any Beats fan jealous.
- Polk Audio UltraFit 2000 – a stable, behind-the-head model ideal for outdoor use comes from Polk Audio in a comfortable ergonomic design blended with smart features. The UltraFit 200 is capable of suppressing light noise but without isolating the user from the environment. Also, thanks to the built-in 3-button controller from Apple, you can control the iPod / iPhone right from above.
Cases optimized for intense activity
- AmphibxFit Waterproof Armband – even though it’s a blizzard outside, this doesn’t mean you cannot do some exercise. Thanks to this waterproof armband, raining won’t be an issue from now on and those who seek a bit more out of it, can even take the armband in a swimming session. Moreover, a version that fits on your waist also exists.
- Belkin EaseFit Plus Armband – although specially design for the Samsung Galaxy S3, this stylish armband can cope with most handhelds out there, while providing a solution to help fitness lovers concentrate on the workout, instead of the actual mobile device.
- Incipio Performance – the perfect lightweight carrying solution for the iPhone 4/4S/5, whether you are running, dancing, lifting weights or stretching. The Incipio Armband has a stylish design and comes with a clear, play-through shield that holds and protects the device.
- Armpocket XTREME i-30 – a large model that can easily fit any device, even a Galaxy Note 2, is the perfect choice for someone wishing to finish a long training session, like a run through the mountains and such. Offering approximately 25 cubic inches of storage, the Armpocket comes with three interior pockets and a touch sensitive window.