L, C, A Article - Inspire A Gadget!

One of the main objectives of the London 2012 Olympic Games has been to ‘Inspire a generation’. Well I for one have been well and truly inspired to take up some new sports, and being the technology fiend I am means I must have all of the best sporting gadgets before I even contemplate heading to the gym or onto the 5 a side pitch.

 By Sam Richardson

 1. 4GB Waterproof MP3 Player with FM radio for Swimming DTCJX21

 First up is this great little device to take the boredom out of swimming. A waterproof MP3 player that can store 100’s of tracks. I’ve always found that I preferred swimming to running because of the more calming nature but have always found it a bit boring after more than a few lengths simply because of the mundane surroundings and lack of noise. That was of course until I discovered this great little piece that works perfectly.

 The sound in the included headphones is poor outside of the water but good enough when under water. The tiny MP3 player is simply strapped onto your swimming goggles and is not too intrusive there. The only small problem is the earphones falling out every so often but once you find the right angle for your ears then all will be good! The music also really helps to pace a workout better.

 Price: £21.99


 2. Nike+ Fuel Band

 The Nike+ Fuelband uses a 3-axis accelerometer to measure your motion, then based on your height and weight it provides an estimate of your calories burned, steps taken and overall distance covered.

 Essentially any activity where you're not using your arms won't really register your energy expelled accurately. So cycling, weight lifting or doing squats with stable arms won't earn you as much NikeFuel as shaking up a cocktail.

 As a general measure of how much you're on the move each day though, this is a pretty inspirational piece of kit. Highly likely to have you walking that extra bus stop or taking the stairs over the lift.

 The Fuel Band works in conjunction with an iPhone app that gives all the stats that can’t be shown on the band.

 Price: £129


 3. Turbotrainer

 With this device there is no need to buy an exercise bike or even leave the house on your own bike! Just hook up your own bike to the device and you ride for miles and miles without moving from in front of the TV. Your bike’s rear wheel just rests on the gear that can have it’s resistance altered by magnets, this simulates to feel of riding on a road or uphill. Stick on some side burns and listen to The Jam to feel even more like Bradley Wiggins.

 Price: £139.99


 4. Wii Fit Plus

 Building on the success of the original Wii Fit, which featured a balance board and a range of differing exercise that tracked your progress on screen, the Wii Fit Plus adds a huge range of content to help slim and tone. It not only allows you to dig out the Ninentdo Wii that you haven’t plugged in since the Christmas you bought it but also encourages the whole family to get fit by using simple and fun activities with the mini cartoon characters modelled on yourselves!

 Price: £69.99


 5. Adidas miCoach Speed Cell

 This is the adidas version of Nike+, and is a little device that sits in the bottom of your specially bought adidas trainers or football boots and records all of your activity. By collecting your ‘stats’ and sending them to your iOS device or PC, it allows you to see how far you ran in that tennis thrashing a family member gave you, or your top speed in the 5-a-side match you’ve just scored the winning goal in.

 Price: £70


 Top Sporting Apps:

 1. Tiger Woods: My Swing

 From renowned swinger comes this app that helps aspiring golfers perfect their game. Using your iOs device’s camera, it will capture your swing and analyse it, before letting you compare your own wayward attempt with Tiger’s. The app gives great advice on how to improve your swing and with help from the greatest golfer of all time will have you tearing up the local 9 hole in no time.

 Price: £2.99


 2. MapMyRun

 The most popular and the best of the iPhone apps that tracks running, walking or cycling. Does exactly as the name would suggest. Uses your phones GPS to track and plot your workout to give you in depth stats on how you performed. You can use it to plan your workouts and meals, and to train for specific events such as a 10k run.

 Price: Free


 3. Absolute Abs

 Once again an app that does as the title suggests. It is the ultimate ab workout. You can go onto the app each day to perform your short daily workout that will provide you with abs of steel in no time. There are different levels of performance and all of the different exercises have pictures and in depth descriptions to ensure you are completing the move properly.

 Price: Free


 4. Yoga Stretch

 This app gives you a guide and workout plan to the ancient practice of yoga. In addition to making your muscles more supple and flexible, Yoga is the perfect way to relieve stress and can be done in the office in just 15 minutes per day.

 Price: £0.69p


 5. Hundred Pushups

 The app that promises, that if you follow what it says, you’ll be doing 100 consecutive push ups in no time. I am currently reserving judgement until I am able to do said push ups but after just a week of using the app I already feel stronger and can do many more push ups than I could before starting the plan.

 Price: £1.49


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