Heart rate monitoring is the de facto measurement of effort in wearables these days. And unless the wearable is specifically targeted at entry level activity tracking, you’d be hard pressed to find one that ships without optical HR sensors. That being said, a few companies are already branching out to non-HR related performance metrics such as BSXinsight lactate threshold meter, Stryd power running meter, and most recently Humon Hex’s muscle oxygen level measuring device.
Designed with the endurance athlete in mind, the Humon Hex measure muscle oxygen levels from the quadriceps; an area which according to Humon, “is the most exerted muscle for most endurance athletes.” The company has also stressed that the Hex wearable can be worn on other parts of the body to provide insights.
The company’s Youtube channel also shows the wearable being used during strength workouts where the Hex was worn on the biceps and the triceps. It’s pretty amazing and shows actual recovery rather than recovery by the age old duration.
The challenge going ahead lies in measuring muscle oxygen levels on multiple muscle groups accurately such as in compound exercises.
When connected to compatible phone, bike computer or wearable, the Humon Hex transmit real time personalised training insights such as optimal pace and workout intensities through personalized colored zones along with localized muscle measurement indicating physical effort.
“Our tests showed that this level of insight into the body allowed athletes to improve significantly faster than with heart-rate based devices. Some users already report shaving up to 20% off their target time. We’re excited to bring this level of insight to the market for athletes around the world.” said Alessandro Babini, CEO and co-founder of Humon.
Humon Hex features:
- Bluetooth and ANT+ enabled
- Wireless charging
- 12 hours battery life
- Water resistant
The wearable isn’t cheap at $275 but Humon has done its homework and their Hex device is the first clinically validated wearable to use optical sensors to non-invasively monitor the oxygen levels in the muscle.
Humon is available for purchase now.
Source: Business Wire