Polar, a leader in heart rate monitoring and fitness assessment technologies, announced on Wednesday in a press release that it will be the “Preferred Heart Rate Technology Supplier” for the Professional Referee Organization, the managing association for North American soccer referees, through 2015. Executives from Polar were interviewed today on FOX News to discuss their product portfolio in more detail; citing additional interest from NFL teams in implementing this athletic activity monitoring technology, as pre-season training camps commence across the league.
If you have never heard of this company, they are headquartered in Lake Success, NY, and Polar USA is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Finland-based Polar Electro OY, which is the company that invented the first wireless heart rate monitor (HRM) in 1977. Polar is now global and has facilities in over 80 countries and its products are sold at over 35,000 retailers; so you may even find their products at your local sporting goods store. Polar heart rate and fitness assessments offer valuable real-time training feedback to help users to evaluate and boost their athletic performance.
In late May, the company introduced a new product called the Polar Stride Sensor Bluetooth Smart, which is the first ever Bluetooth Smart sensor that enables runners to monitor speed, distance and also capture intelligent training data while using a compatible device. It is a small, lightweight device that is attached onto the user’s shoe that receives useful exercise performance data such as stride length, cadence, running speed and distance. Bluetooth Smart technology makes the Stride Sensor ideal for activities indoors, since it can record data without a GPS device, which loses its signal in that environment. This product has been adapted to mobile devices too, as data recorded by the Stride Sensor can be analyzed and shared wirelessly via applications in smartphones, tablets or any Bluetooth Smart ready devices. What’s more, the Stride Sensor is compatible with the latest Apple iPhones via an application called Polar Beat that can even calculate projected finish times for long distance events such as marathons.
As stated in a previous article, wireless device technology is being enhanced to improve medical treatments and health evaluations. Polar is moving in another direction to take mobile wireless technology to a whole new level for physical fitness monitoring. There is a definite need for more advanced HRM on the field during workouts in the NBA and NFL, amid the string of athletes being sidelined due to heart conditions in recent years. The cost of the Stride Sensor is $79.95 on a single unit quantity basis, and it is likely to be a smash hit in Apple’s future iWatch, which would allow this technology to reach its full potential and open up a whole new market for MEMS and wireless devices.
One could consider this as green technology as well, since it is accomplishing a function on a low power mobile device that would typically require a much more elaborate setting of a treadmill in a fitness club with higher overall power usage.
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