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November 12, 2014 AT 3:00 am

Measure Your Body like an Astronaut with Hexoskin #WearableWednesday

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This shirt review for Hexoskin caught me by surprise on digitaltrends, as it closely resembles a prototype I reported on earlier in the year called Astroskin. Surprise — apparently Hexoskin was the first version, and it was designed by NASA and the Canadian Space Agency. It has an impressive list data capabilities, which are transmitted by a Bluetooth device housed securely in a side pocket.

During the day, Hexoskin measures heart rate, heart-rate variability and recovery, step count, calories burned, respiration (breath rate), and a bewildering array of additional metrics including VO2 max, breathing volume, activity level, cadence, and more (whew!). At night, the shirt can track sleep and movement, including what position you’re snoozing in, and adds cardiac and respiratory activity.

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Okay, let’s get down to the feel of this shirt. Apparently test driver, Eric Pilkington, found the shirt to be thicker than most workout wear, but it is waterproof and wicks well. I should mention the shirt can be washed, as long as the bluetooth device is disconnected. The shirt is great on quality, but there some things to get used to, according to Eric.

Despite its relatively small size and weight, the presence of the device (sensor box) is certainly noticeable, especially when doing high impact activities like running or jumping. More stationary activities like cycling, not so much. And the tight fit around the chest can at first feel restrictive, though this sense passed with time.

In the end, the shirt really scores with its app and data collection, even if the fit isn’t 100%. If you are an addicted sports fan that even likes to record your sleep cycle, this is going to be the shirt for you. Eric really gives a lot more detail in his post, so make sure you check it out. The Hexoskin is available for sale, but as for Astroskin, so far that’s still just for astronauts. Maybe you already have some sportswear that fits you well, and you want to save some bucks. Why not try our Polar Heart Rate Startup Kit. After a quick set-up time, you’ll be able to follow your beats. Be accountable for your own tech and health, and have fun while you’re at it.

HeartRateKit


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