A new wearable gadget on the market is a small clasp you wear on your shirt like a lapel pin or brooch. It comes in a range of colours and if you want, the Lumo Lift will let you know when you start to slouch.
"The original inspiration came from my co-founder’s struggle with back pain," explained Monisha Perkash, CEO and co-founder of Lumo Body Tech.
"He started taking posture classes, which had a dramatic improvement on his back pain. And that’s when the light bulb went on for us. We realized we could use technology to give people feedback.”
The Lumo Lift tracks body movement, recording steps, calories and mileage. Users can also calibrate it to gently vibrate when they start to slouch.
Good posture can also affect your body on a physiological level. Social psychologist Amy Cuddy did a Ted Talk about the correlation between posture and confidence. She explained how getting people to strike power poses for two minutes increased levels of their power hormone — testosterone — and decreased their levels of the stress hormone cortisol.
“Two minutes lead to these hormonal changes that configure your brain to basically be either assertive, confident and comfortable or really stress reactive, feeling sort of shut down," Cuddy said.
Monisha Perkash says the Lumo Lift was built in collaboration with physical therapists, spine physicians and designers. And although the Lumo Lift isn’t shipping yet, more than 16,000 of them have already been pre-ordered on the company's website.
Perkash says aside from wanting to stand taller, command better presence and build core strength, people are becoming more aware of the consequences of all the time we spend parked in our chairs.
"Sitting is the new smoking," she said. "In fact there’s research that shows that even if you exercise every day, if you sit for prolonged periods of time you’re shaving years off of your life. Our technology can monitor that and give you motivations if you’ve been sitting too long to simply stand up and take a stretch. Even that one simple act makes a big difference in your overall health.”