Tech for yoga
Beginning a yoga practice is a great way to relax, improve your flexibility and calm your mind – particularly during these difficult times. How do you get started though, particularly when you can’t attend a class in person? You honestly don’t need a lot of equipment to begin a yoga practice, but there is some technology that can make it easier to get started.
If you’re taking part in an online yoga class, you’ll need a webcam so the instructor can watch and make sure you’re safe. Our preferred webcam is the Logitech StreamCam thanks to its electronic image stabilisation and facial tracking (great for keeping the image steady and focused while you move), plus smart exposure and 1080p resolution.
If the Logitech StreamCam is a little beyond your price range, the Microsoft LifeCam HD-3000 also comes highly recommended. Again, it features auto-focus to ensure you’re clearly visible to your instructor, and it can be mounted on a tripod if it’s not convenient to have it clipped to your laptop. The exposure shifts dynamically to suit changing lighting conditions, too. For more options, check out our full guide to the best webcams.
Fitness trackers are mainly designed for aerobic activities like cycling, running, walking and swimming, and can’t give too much help when it comes to yoga (indeed, they could be a distraction). However, if you’re participating in a particularly intense session, you might be interested to see a record of your heart rate, and an estimate of how many calories were burned during the session.
You don’t need an expensive smartwatch for this, and a basic activity band will do the job perfectly well. The Honor Band 5 is one of the most affordable fitness trackers available today, and offers both activity and sleep tracking, with a maximum battery life of 14 days with light use.
The Xiaomi Mi Band 4 is another good choice that’s super affordable. It’s not the best looking fitness tracker, but can track your heart rate throughout your yoga practice and can last up to a month between charges.
Interested in something a little more high-tech? Yoganotch is a ‘smart yoga’ system that uses a set of sensors on your body to provide live feedback and advice as you move through a yoga class, helping you stay safe and improve your posture. The sensors clip onto elasticated straps or your clothing, creating a 3D visualisation of your body.
If you need to make any corrections, an audio instruction will advise you what to do, and let you know when you’ve got it right. The Yoganotch app is only available for iOS so far, but an Android version is in the works.
The Yoganotch set (including motion sensors with a charging stand, wearable straps, a phone stand and everything else necessary to get started) is available for a discounted price of $199 when you use the voucher code launch.
You can see the original article ‘A beginner’s guide to yoga‘ here