Wearable Company WHOOP acquires gym-based PUSH
Wow, that was quick. Only a few days ago we reported that WHOOP had secured $200m of additional funding and they’ve started spending it already!
What is WHOOP 3.0
WHOOP is a popular sports fitness subscription service that elegantly tracks readiness-to-train, tracks workouts and gives sleep recommendations. WHOOP supplies its v3 band to partner with its excellent app.
What is the PUSH Band 2.0?
PUSH is a complete system for tracking velocity and power during strength-based workouts. The app features coached-based monitoring plus the ability to follow over 500 exercise types and record how well you execute the reps.
RECOMMENDED: Detailed WHOOP Strap Review
This looks like a good move for WHOOP.
WHOOP’s algorithms track the effects of endurance-based workouts by looking at how hard your heart is working and recovering. That’s fine, it works….but typically not when you are lifting weights where there is a different ‘kind’ of muscular strain. Adding in a capability to quantify that missing link is pretty cool on the face of it. If done correctly, this could give an improved holistic picture of your readiness.
I recently reviewed a similar product called TRACKBAR, which has the advantage of additionally assessing asymmetries in your technique.
RECOMMENDED: TRACKBAR Performance Review
Other wearables companies have tried similar things. For example,
- Polar estimates MUSCLE load from the power profile of your workout but only when running and cycling.
- Biostrap also track individual gym-based reps and have a learning feature where the type of rep can be automatically identified
- Like PUSH, TRACKBAR determines the velocity of your rep and the weight used is manually input either as part of a workout plan or during the workout.
- Several Garmin watches track gym reps automatically and allow you to create free-weight type workouts.
- Another approach is to have smart weights where the accelerometers are built into the weights and, by definition, they also know the weight as well. Such systems are costly.
WHOOP is doing a good thing here. I suspect the negatives of the end solution will be that it measures only one side and requires weight to be manually input somewhere…which is a faff.
I further suspect that WHOOP will initially incorporate the PUSH band’s data into their app ecosystem and then, later, release an updated WHOOP Band that matches the PUSH accelerometer requirements and incorporates their algorithms.