Kids/Babies Wearables

EyeForcer forces your kids to have better posture while using mobile devices

Kids are spending an awful lot of time sitting in front of smartphones and tablets playing games and surfing the Internet. But all that slouching they are doing can result in terrible posture that leads to medical problems down the road.

patent-claimedEyeForcer is a patent-pending wearable piece of eyewear with an accompanying app that monitors kids while they are using smartphones and tablets, and encourages them to have better posture. It penalizes bad posture by reducing the amount of time that kids using it can spend using mobile devices. EyeForcer ships in November at future pricing of about $65. But Kickstarter backers can get one for a pledge of about $93. Its makers are trying to raise $154,580 by July 6.


Folding, kneeling Edge Desk embraces the cutting edge of ergonomics anywhere

More than 6070% of people will experience some form of light to severe back pain in their lives, brought on by many screens used in daily life along with poor seating solutions. This adds up to uncomfortable days, lost time at work, and possible complications later in life.

The importance of proper posture is what led the team to combine the idea of a kneeling chair and desk to create the Edge Desk. When folded down, it’s less than six inches tall for maximum stowage. The real magic happens when it’s unfolded, though. Its single-piece aluminum construction features a minimally styled, white desktop with thick, padded seating designed in a such way to promote optimal posture and help concentration.

Health and Wellness Wearables

Backbone supports you in the quest for better posture

It’s incredible to think that for every 15° of forward neck tilt, as much as 10-20 pounds of pressure is placed on the spine, neck, and back. This is not only a detriment to posture and overall well being, but puts people one step closer to looking like Quasimodo — a fate no one wants.

With bad posture so commonplace, it’s no surprise more and more crowdfunding campaigns are addressing the issue head on. The latest to do so is the Backbone, a pair of connected shoulder straps that not physically supports better posture but also reminds users to straighten up through notifications and vibrations.

Health and Wellness Wearables

ALEX gives you the straight talk about your posture

Forward Head Posture, Text Neck — most people don’t know about these very real conditions. The advent of the smartphone revolution brought these harbingers of chronic neck and back pain along for the ride, which is why maintaining proper posture even with all these devices floating around is more important than ever.

NAMU’s ALEX is a Bluetooth-connected personal posture coach designed to hang from the ears and sit behind the neck for optimal analysis.
A three-axis accelerometer and pivot sensor ensure accurate measurements are sent back to the companion smartphone app with which users can manage the frequency and intensity of alerts and track progress. Avatar Mode also allows for real-time posture management with an on-screen representation to make sure everything works smoothly.


Backerjack Podcast #14: Breathing Sensors, Social Servers, and Heat-Seeking Bedroom Bots

In Episode 14 of the Backerjack Podcast, Steve and Ross check out some of the latest products seeking funds and preorders:

  • Neobase, a home server that lets you create your own private Facebook for sharing with your (small) circle of friends. Now all your base are belong to you!
  • Wakē, a focused light and speaker combo that mounts over your bed to wake you gently without disturbing those sharing the budoir
  • Prana, a wearable sensor that scores your breathing and posture and lets you practice via a video game

Many thanks to SnapPower for sponsoring this episode! Please support its campaign.

Download  the episode or listen below, subscribe via iTunes or RSS, and follow Backerjack on Twitter and Facebook. Also check out Steve’s great work on Apple World Today!

Health and Wellness

BetterBack provides improved posture, produces better backers

Good posture is one of the most ignored health issues out there. Our posture affects the way we breathe, grow and function. Bad posture can have serious long term complications, such as back pain and a hump in our old age.

BetterBack is one solution to this problem. This product is targeted towards individuals who sit a lot and helps them straighten their otherwise slouched over sitting position. The main portion of BetterBack rests on the lower back. Two straps reach from that part to loop around the knees, providing leverage to draw the lower back in while the upper back straightens out. BetterBack can be used and carried around anywhere, making it convenient. It also boasts breathable fabrics so that one’s back doesn’t get all sweaty.

This is one of those products that doesn’t need technology to be innovative and effective. BetterBack provides a simple solution in an even simpler package. The product’s makers may want to consider adding a standing option to their brand, but their existing product is still intriguing. One will cost backers a donation of $75 for delivery in October 2015. BetterBack Kickstarter campaign is looking for $12,500 by May 2.


Prana wearable tells you how to breathe easy, take a stand

Today, most wearable are focused on measuring the number of steps one takes per day. It’s a useful measure of daily activity, but there is far more to understanding one’s well-being.

Prana looks like many fitness trackers that clip to a waistband, but it takes a different approach, measuring things that many other product are not – breathing and posture. Prana calculates a score for both and allows a number of ways to actively improve, including a videogame controlled by your breathing and respiration exercises associated with practices such as tai chi and yoga. San Franciso-based Prana Tech seeks $100,000 by April 30th. The price for a Prana is $129, a $20 discount from its expected retail price. The device is expected to ship in July.

Prana competes with Spire, which measures activity in addition to breathing. Spire is ahead of the curve when it comes to interpreting the meaning of certain breathing patterns, but Prana’s measurement of posture is a nice bonus as that has previously been the domain of other wearables; its active training is also more interactive than Spire’s.


Kids/Babies Wearables

FixSit fixes kids sitting in a W shape; prevents pain later on

As children grow and develop, their habits can have major consequences for the future. For instance, children who W-sit, meaning sit on their butts with both legs bent and splayed out awkwardly, are at risk for back issues later in life.

FixSit hopes to prevent such issues. Designed for children, this product is a wearable device that affixes to both ankles. It can detect when the child is W-sitting. When this behavior is detected, an alarm is sounded. This way, children are provided with instant feedback about their position and can adjust accordingly.

Best of all, each FixSit looks like a toe-less sock. Made of black stretchy fabric, this product will work great on children because it’s not a bulky piece of tech, like other wearables.

One concern about this product is the use of a loud alarm to correct behavior. However, the campaign states that the creators are adding a vibrate mode so the little nose-miner won’t be disturbed at school by the alarm, smart. For their very own, backers can donate $300 for one “production unit” or pair for estimated delivery in October 2015. FixSit is hoping to raise $75,000 with the help of Kickstarter.

Fitness Wearables

Arki walking coach tracks steps, coaches posture

Having good posture gets more and more important as time wears on. The older we get, the harder it is to straighten up, resulting in pain and injury.

Arki is a wearable band that monitors your posture while you walk. It learns habits, like walking and texting, and tracks these movements into an accompanying smartphone app via Bluetooth LE. By measuring arm swing speed, rotation angle relative to gravity, vibrations from feet and other data, Arki can tell whether you need to having better walking habits like taking measured steps, standing up straight and bending the arms and will let you know when to do this with a vibration.

Arki has several other features like using your walk as a passcode and compatibility with smart thermostats. All in all, walking is an important activity that we engage in, but like any other activity it has the potential of being done wrong. It’s nice to see a product that gives feedback for something so common that it is often forgotten. One will cost backers $149 with estimated delivery in April 2015. Arki is looking to raise $100,000 on Kickstarter.

Health and Wellness

Redesigned Neck Brace promises less bulk, more comfort

Neck pain and working on a computer seem to go together, especially for those who work in a white collar business setting. In an effort to bring some relief to this particularly large group, New Generation Neck Brace was created. The typical neck brace is uncomfortable to wear and often makes a person hot and sweaty. While it’s not entirely clear what it is made of, this neck brace was designed to be less bulky and help people improve their posture so that they get relief. It can be worn either over or under clothes and offers some flexibility so that the user doesn’t feel strangled while wearing it. There is also a pouch that can hold hot or cold pads for added comfort. All in all, an intelligent upgrade to a very useful product. This campaign seeks to raise £15,000 (~$24,000 USD) by November 27, 2014. Early bird backers will get one product for £35 (~$56 USD), with an expected delivery of December 2014.