Design firm Tangram has developed a smart jump rope that provides users exercise data they can view while they are doing their workout.
Jumping rope is one of the easiest, cheapest, and most popular ways for people to work out, and Tangram hopes to capitalize on the ubiquity of this exercise by offering Smart Rope, a whole new way to display fitness data.
Like many high-tech fitness devices available on the market, Smart Rope contains a series of sensors that keeps track of the user's every jump. Smart Rope also has Bluetooth 4.0 to allow it to communicate with the user's smartphone via the Smart Gym app, which consolidates and interprets all the fitness data gathered by the Smart Rope and presents it to the user in a way that is simple and easy to understand.
Designers of the Smart Rope decided to position the rope at a 45-degree angle on the handle to allow the effortless, natural movement of the rope as the user swings it above his head. The rope is also attached through ball bearings to allow for faster, smoother revolutions.
The Smart Rope is very similar to other fitness devices in the way it uses sensors to gather information. However, what really sets this new wearable apart from everything else that has been offered is the ability to show the user's stats in real-time on thin air.
Tangram makes this possible by embedding a set of LED lights into the rope itself. When the rope swings over the user's head, the sensors light up the appropriate LED lights to form the digits corresponding to the data the user wants to see. It works like those novelty alarm clocks that display the time in mid-air. When the alarm rings, the clock waves a stick of blinking LED back and forth to write the time in the air.
"Smart Rope displays jump data right before your eyes, creating a truly immersive workout experience that's fun and, just as important, provides information you'll actually use to get healthier," said Tangram.
The user can choose which type of data to display. For instance, he can program the Smart Rope to show how many jumps he has made. The Smart Rope can display up to four digits, so the user can rest assured the device will be able to count his jumps for most of his workouts.
The device can also display how many calories the user is currently burning based on the number of jumps and the user's body mass index.
Also, the Smart Rope can serve as a timer, displaying how many minutes the user has been working out. Lastly, it can create interval workout sessions and recommend it to the user based on previous sessions.
For jump rope aficionados out there who are willing to lay their money down for the Smart Rope, Tangram is not selling the device just yet. Instead, it has finished developing a Smart Rope prototype that it will use to promote a Kickstarter campaign to develop the final version. The Kickstarter campaign will start on Feb. 25.