If you spend all day working at a desk, you could suffer from the chronic back pain that comes from hours spent crouching over a keyboard.
It can be incredibly difficult to break the bad habits that lead to back pain. After all, who doesn’t find it more comfortable to slouch in the office chair?
That’s why the LUMOback was created. It’s a device that you can wear under your clothes to monitor your posture and physical activity.
It will buzz to tell you when you’re using bad posture and an avatar in the synced smartphone app can show you how you need to correct it. It also constantly collects data about how much you sit, how often you stand, and your position while you drive and sleep.
The company recently performed a study that looks at the impact of technology on health. Here are a few of the interesting takeaways:
- The average American sits more than 3/4 of their workday: 6.2 hours between 9-5.
- 60% of Americans reported experiencing adverse health effects as a result of using technology like mobile devices and computers and from sitting at desks all day at work. Half of that group specifically cited back pain as a symptom.
- A higher percentage of respondents on the West Coast reported symptoms from tech use than in the rest of the country. There’s an awful lot of desk jockeys working in Silicon Valley.
For all that, LUMOback has one big strike against it. As Tim Cook put it when discussing Google Glass at this year’s D Conference, it’s hard to get people to wear something they don’t have to. A watch? Sure, if it can be stylish and functional, because it’s relatively out of the way. But a sensor on your back/shoulders/elbows/knees?
Good luck making back sensor stylish and selling it for $US100+ (the LUMOback is $US149, for instance).
Still, for those who are sick of the pain in their necks, the company may be onto something. It ran a Kickstarter campaign aiming to raise raising $US100,000. It doubled that.
And Lumo has one smart business tactic in mind, too. They hope to sell it to corporations for their employee-wellness programs. Some physical therapists have begun recommending the device to patients, too, Lumo CEO Monisha Perkash told Business Insider.
Perkash also hopes that in the years to come, hospitals could buy or rent the devices. Likewise, fitness centres could buy them for athletes who want to improve their form when running and lifting weights.
Here’s a closer look at the LUMOback app:
Here’s how the sensor fits under typical office attire: