ABXCORE skips the commercial and goes straight to the gym

abxcoreSince the early days of fitness infomercials, avid television viewers know the importance of core strength is about more than a good-looking pair of abs. Add ABXCORE to the list of portable, ab-focused fitness devices that are designed to be easy to use in any location. What makes ABXCORE different is the adjustable, compact design, the flexible resistance levels, and the ergonomic design specially made to create an effective workout while reducing the risk of strain or injury in the process. ABXCORE may have that infomercial feel to it, but promises a full core workout, especially for the obliques. ABXCORE will start building muscle in November and starts at $99.

Connected Objects Fitness

An atypical elliptical, Cubii lets the deskbound stay active

The Premise. Sitting down all day can be harmful to our health, but what is an office worker to do? Some opt for sitting on yoga balls, while others may try to power walk in place during work. Either way, it’s difficult for corporate drones to get the exercise they need and complete their work at the same time.

The Product. The Cubii is a miniature elliptical trainer for under your desk. You place your feet in the product and rotate them at the resistance of your choice just as you would on a conventional elliptical machine. This device is small enough to be portable and discreet, making it perfect for the office. The Cubii has Bluetooth capabilities and communicates with an accompanying app to track your activity from your phone. 

The Pitch. The long Cubii video features various office workers giving testimonials for the product, all saying that they love being active and don’t find exercising while working to be a distraction. In addition, the creators explain their passion for fitness and personal health. They also talk about how their app can also be used with fitness products, such as the Fitbit. Cubii hopes to raise $80,000 in a 40-day Kickstarter campaign.

The Perks. Early backers can enjoy the Cubii and accompanying app for $279 (shipping not included) or a regular price of $299. Higher tiers offer multi-packs of the product for either couples or an entire office (of eight people). Estimated delivery is currently set at January 2015.

The Potential. Several crowdfunded products have tried to solve the evil office sitting problem of our modern age. Some do it with standing desks, such as the aptly named StandDesk, while others try with robotic chairs like the ChairBot. These other products focus on actually not sitting, while the Cubii is all about staying in motion when parked at your desk. For a sawed-off elliptical machine, the Cubii is a bit expensive, especially since it’s entirely mechanical. However, compared to these other products, this mini-workout device is by far the cheapest option. Its app that is compatible with other fitness devices is especially appealing. All in all, the Cubii could be just the solution for stagnant office employees.

Fitness Smartwatches/Bands

PulseOn connects to your smartphone, but not a chest strap

PulseOnLately, we’ve seen a trend in using products to maximize one’s fitness. Apps and gadgets make it easier to see one’s performance level as well as progress made over time. The PulseOn closely resembles pulse-monitoring watches from companies such as Polar, but requires no chest strap. With this wristband, the heart rate is monitored and that information is sent wirelessly to an accompanying app that helps track progress. In addition, this Finnish gadget keeps a record of fitness intensity, distance, time, and speed for runners. One of these wristbands will cost backers $169 USD. PulseOn hopes to raise $150,000 USD in a two month-long campaign on Indiegogo.

Apparel Fitness

TITIN shorts weigh you down to give muscles and joints a compression hug

TITINMost workouts are centered around the idea that muscles must tear in order to become strengthened. This can be hard on the joints and making muscle training long and tedious. TITIN offers muscle tear-free workouts with its weighted shorts, which will join their already successful weighted shirt. The black, sweat-wicking shorts protect the muscles and joints while working out so that they can become stronger. One pair of TITIN shorts costs jacked backers $99 with expected delivery in September 2014. TITIN hopes to raise $100,000 in its 30-day Kickstarter campaign, but should really have a stretch goal after its workout.


Resistance is not futile, helps your free-weight workout

ResistanceMany gym rats use resistance bands to make their workout even more beneficial. The only problem is that some exercises are out the question with resistance bands because they’re too difficult to hold and can create a dangerous situation. Resistance solves this problem. This fitness accessory acts as a wrist or ankle cuff that fastens using Velcro. The pièce de résistance is a swiveling hook in the shape of a stylized “R” that attaches the band, making it possible to lift free weights with some extra resistance. This product costs backers $30 with an estimated delivery date of May 2014. Resistance hopes to raise $15,000 in a 40-day Kickstarter campaign.


Aqua Elliptical helps you get in your cardio on the lake

Aqua EllipticaWater sports have grown past water skiing, wakeboarding and surfing. Now, people are exploring even more new ways, like paddleboarding, to get exercising while in a lake or ocean. The Aqua Elliptica offers one such way to enjoy cardio while out on the water. This product is basically a water-friendly elliptical machine, similar to one you’d find in the gym. One Aqua Elliptica costs backers $2,500 with an estimated delivery date of September 2014. This new water device hopes to raise $50,000 in a 33-day Kickstarter campaign.

Health and Wellness Safety

LifeKeeper learns how to protect your heart from episodes

lifekeeperCardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the world with over 13 million cases each year. People know how to engage in heart-smart diets and behaviors, but sometimes that isn’t enough to protect oneself from a cardiac episode. The LifeKeeper is more than just a heart rate monitor, sending vitals to a user’s smartphone and assessing the data to determine if there are any health risks at that present time. LifeKeeper collects data through questions, activity tracking, sleep analysis, and creates a profile which can be viewed or that will trigger an alert in a potentially health-hazardous scenario. A LifeKeeper can be had with a pledge of $199, complete with sensors and the app, arriving in December 2014.

Fitness Wearables

SmartMove monitors all activity from the ground up

smartmoveOne of the main issues with the latest trend of activity trackers is that users just might not have them on at all times. Everybody knows that they need to stay active to be healthy, but how active is active enough? SmartMove is a new kind of activity tracker that monitors all movement and exercise because its sensor is embedded in an insole for a shoe similar to the original Nike+ sensor that started the activity tracking renaissance, SmartMove can tell when a user is sitting or standing, and tracks movement and activity data to report fitness habits to its own proprietary app. Available for $99, SmartMove will keep users moving as soon as August 2014.

Aerobics Fitness

Virtual Knockout gamifies boxing mitt training fitness with tablet

The Premise. Video games have traditionally been controlled through small hand and finger movements, but lately, video game developers have created systems (such as the Wii, the Xbox Kinect, and Rockband) that allow players to use their whole body to immerse themselves in the game. Wii Sports doesn’t exactly offer the most technical training with its boxing game, and thus a quality interactive boxing videogame has yet to be developed—until now.

The Product. Virtual Knockout is the result of a combination between rhythmic gaming and focused mitt training. It’s a game that can be played on an iOS or Android device where a virtual trainer throws a variety of punches that require quick reflexes and timing to succeed. But if the user wants to turn the game into a workout, he or she can mount their device on to a unit that comes complete with spring loaded targets equipped with accelerometers. The result is an intensely fun workout that cuts out the need for a trip to the gym or payment for a trainer.

The Pitch. It’s much easier to see how the Virtual Knockout could be useful when it’s in action. The studio device that they use for the video seems sturdy enough, but it remains to be seen how a wall mount can withstand a bevy of punches. The app, however, looks like a game made for the 1990s. The gameplay seems too repetitive to retain any interest from a casual player, and the graphics are mediocre at best.

The Perks. The app isn’t quite ready yet, but it’s expected to be available in June for $5. But if you’re looking for the full-body experience, the price will be a lot higher. The Early Bird Wall Banger that mounts to a wooden or masonry wall costs $299 (app included), and it is expected to be delivered in October 2014. The Floor Model has an even steeper price of $649 for the Early Bird deal, but it does come with a floor stand. The two models are expected to be delivered in December if you aren’t able to claim the Early Bird deal.

The Potential. A manufacturer still hasn’t been chosen, so that’s not a good sign, but the preliminary designs themselves don’t look too sturdy either. Even the limited market of customers who are interested in boxing are unlikely to use Virtual Knockout as a substitute for traditional training techniques, but it does appear as if Virtual Knockout can deliver an invigorating, fun aerobic workout.

Aerobics Running

BSX measures lactate threshold to help pace your endurance workout

The Premise. Whether you’re a professional athlete or going for some recreational exercise, you always want to get the most out of your workout. Push your body too hard, and your muscles risk extreme injury or damage. Go to lightly with your workout, and you’re left with much to be desired from your regimen. There are certainly devices that are able to monitor your activity, but it’s still difficult to know just how much you get the most results out of your workout.

The Product. The BSX Insight is looking to change the way athletes monitor their workouts. Packed in a low profile design is a device thats able to monitor heart rate, cadence, pace and calories burned. But the BSX also brings something new to the table: lactate threshold monitoring. Previously, lactate threshold could only be monitored through a finger prick that drew blood, but BSX has developed a system that accurately measures what goes on inside your muscles. It then pairs with your smartphone or other wearable technology to give you live feedback on your athletic performance.

The Pitch. Co-Founders Dustin and Nithin take turns explaining the benefits of lactate threshold technology. This is the first time that that the technology is being made available to the average consumer, so it’s understandable that they take quite a bit of time in the video to explain just how the BSX Insight maximizes your workout and gives a more complete view of your fitness profile. From live action shots, the BSX Insight doesn’t seem to interfere at all with range of motion and activity, and it sleekly fits within the specially designed compression sleeve. The video ends with the two founders asking for donators to fund their final push toward production of their prototype before they run off to the horizon.

The Perks. A normal lactate threshold test can cost up to $200 per test, and in order to stay accurate, those tests need to happen every few months. The BSX Insight on the other hand is only $179 for runner’s edition. The multi-sport edition costs a few more dollars at $219. If you’re not sure whether or not the BSX Insight is for you, you can still support the campaign for $25 to receive a pair of compression sleeves and three months of free trainBSX premium access. The product is expected to be delivered in December 2014.

The Potential. The BSX Insight represents a step beyond the run-of-the-mill pedometers, but the obscurity of what it measures likely won’t resonate with people who aren’t ultra-competitive athletes. It may represent an extravagance for the casual runner, but its simplicity may make it an appealing addition to people’s everyday workout gear.