Mbody's smart shorts measure your muscle activity
By Ben Coxworth
January 28, 2014
When you're exercising, you may think that you're working your left and right leg muscle groups equally, but are you really? Finnish company Myontec's Mbody system reportedly lets you know. It consists of a sensor-equipped pair of MShorts, an MCell module that plugs into those shorts, and an app that displays the processed data on your mobile device.
The MShorts' multiple sensors monitor the electrical activity of the quadriceps and hamstrings in both legs. That data is collected by the MCell (which can be removed when the shorts are washed), and transmitted by Bluetooth to the user's Android mobile device. There, it's processed by the Mbody Live app.
Utilizing that app, users can view real-time readings regarding left/right muscle balance, front/back muscle balance for each leg, muscle load, along with GPS-enabled speed and distance figures (assuming the user is running). This means that users can tell if one leg is stronger than the other, and if the muscles in each leg are being worked equally. If not, they can adjust their workout accordingly, until the figures even up.
Measurements of other parameters are apparently also in the works.
Users can additionally view figures from past sessions, to see how they're progressing. What's more, they can access the cloud-based Movescount service, where they can do things like maintaining a training diary, creating training programs, and connecting with other members of the Mbody community.
The designers of the system believe that it could find use not only in sports and exercise, but also in fields such as rehabilitation, gaming, medicine, space and military.
The complete Mbody setup is available now, for €890 (about US$1,200).