Part fitness tracker, part personal coach, Moov helps you train smarter. A few weeks ago, the folks at Moov sent me one of the devices to check out on the bike, running, hiking, and strength training. Using a combination of hardware and software, Moov translates your movement into a personal coaching session.
Similar to something like Xbox Kinect, Moov uses a 9-axis motion sensing system (comprised of magnet, angular rate, and gravity sensors) combined with intelligent software to recreate and analyze your motion in 3D, including speed, orientation, and even form. While collecting workout data is a given, the power behind Moov is in giving you coaching advice to help you get the most out of your workout and improve your performance over time.
Moov comes with a small charging dock–you slip the round device into this dock and charge it up via a USB cable. Once the sensor is fully powered, choose from a variety of apps to pair the device via Bluetooth to your smartphone–cycling, running, 7 minute workout, swimming, and boxing. I have been using the cycling app the most, while also playing around with the running and 7 minute workout apps.
When you head out on your ride, simply strap the larger Moov band around your ankle and the device acts essentially like a cadence sensor. Collecting all your ride data as normal, Moov also assesses the terrain and your cadence, offering up suggestions to shift up or down in order to make you more efficient on the bike.
On my road bike, I use a Garmin Edge 1000 bike computer with a Garmin speed/cadence sensor. Below, you can compare the data collected from my Garmin in Strava with that of the Moov device. Since the Moov app uses your phone’s GPS to calculate speed and distance, those numbers pretty much match as expected. The cadence numbers, on the other hand, do not. Moov was a good 13% off my average and max cadence. Much like Strava, Moov uses their own power estimation–given that I do not have an actual power meter installed on my bike, these numbers are simply relative from ride to ride.
While most hard core cyclists are already fully kitted out with cadence sensors, power meters, and bike computers, as well as intuitively knowing what cadence is personally comfortable and sustainable, I do think Moov could be useful for beginner cyclists who haven’t quite figured out how cadence and shifting affect their riding. The only problem is, you need to wear headphones in order to get the feedback and I don’t really condone wearing headphones on the bike. If you mount your phone on the handlebars you can receive visual cues, however.
Run & Walk
I found Moov most useful for running or even hiking. Strapped around your ankle, the device measures a host of data about your running style include cadence, length of your stride, and impact force, while the coach gives you consistent feedback on how you could improve your performance in each category. You can choose from a variety of coaching sessions such as sprint intervals (designed to burn calories), speed endurance (to help you build distance and speed), running efficiency (run further and better), brisk walking, and open training data collection. I find real time feedback on my performance much more helpful than analyzing my run data after I get back home. If you get tired of being yelled at by the nice lady, you can choose the level of feedback or updates you want to receive each workout.
One thing to note, make sure in your Settings>Privacy>Location Services that the Moov apps only track your location when the app is in use (While Using vs Always). Otherwise your phone battery will drain rapidly.
Seven Minute Workout
The seven minute workout comes in handy when you are traveling and don’t have time for a run or ride. The app walks you through each exercise, while the Moov device helps you keep track of how many reps you complete in a certain amount of time so you never lose count.
After a successful Kickstarter campaign earlier this year, Moov is now ready to sell to consumers at a retail price of around $79. Each box comes with a Moov device, charger, wrist band, and ankle band.