What the future holds for fitness technology


Swarms of drones follow you while you run, recording video of your workout. Sensors hidden in your T-shirt track your heart rate and how many calories you’re burning. Your sunglasses log your miles and respond when you ask, “How’s my pace?”

No, you and those sci-fi gadgets aren’t starring in the next action-packed Marvel flick. Rather, those gadgets might be the future of fitness trackers, according to sports technology experts.

As wrist-worn wearables phase out, less invasive and more personalized devices may phase in, said Gina Lee, founder of the Legacy Sports Institute, a health-care facility for professional and amateur athletes slated to open in Alpharetta, Georgia, by the end of the year.

“The future of technology is definitely to develop the most invisible, smallest, least detectable technology for consumers that can track the most biometric data and be consumer-friendly and have accurate outcomes,” Lee said.

Here’s a look at how fitness technology of the future may become more hidden, more like a coach and more personalized than ever before.

It’s about preventing injury, too

“I see the emerging trend of technology becoming more and more invisible,” said Mounir Zok, director of technology and innovation for the US Olympic Committee.

Wearable technologies that track your physical activity, heart rate and sleep patterns are now being designed into clothing, Zok said.

The idea isn’t new. In 1984, Adidas released the first shoe integrated with technology to electronically measure the wearer’s running distance, average speed and calories burned. The shoe, called Micropacer, had a microcomputer hidden in the left tongue to collect data.

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