Smart insoles: Tracking your run through your feet

Posted by Gary Robinson on

Think about wearable running trackers and what comes to mind? A watch, a fitness band? A smartwatch?

Since running watches first came on the scene in the early 2000s, they’ve dominated the sports tracking market, with many runners getting their performance data direct from their wrist. A quick glance at a screen and you know how far and fast you’ve run, maybe even have an idea of your cadence and who’s sent you an email… 

NURVV Run does things a little differently. As technology has improved, so has run tracking. Rather than being strapped to your arm, NURVV tracks your run directly from the most relevant point on your body – your feet.

Here are just some of the reasons why.

Foot trackers can reduce your injury risk

If you run with a watch you’ll be used to getting data on your performance such as your pace and mileage. But what about form?

One of the main benefits of foot-based run tracking is the ability to provide valuable insight on running technique. Whether you’re a rearfoot, midfoot or forefoot runner, for example, or whether you have any imbalances in your gait.

Monitoring your running technique, and how your form changes during a run or when you’re fatigued, can provide vital insights to help you swerve injury and improve your pace – and it’s all best tracked from your feet.

You might be thinking, ‘hang on, my watch monitors cadence’. But while many wrist-based trackers offer a cadence metric, they can only give an estimate. Cadence is a measure of how many steps you take a minute, not how many times your arm swings.

Insights on certain aspects of form – footstrike, pronation, step length, balance and cadence – can only be measured accurately by monitoring foot motion.

NURVV RUN is designed to bring you all of this highly-individual data right from the source. Using 32 high-precision sensors in a pair of ultralight insoles, as you run NURVV takes 1,000 readings every second feeding back vital insight on your form, technique and biomechanics. 

This data, along with the metrics gleaned from two lightweight GPS trackers, is used to provide you with personalised training advice, workouts and guidance.

Follow the in-app and audio coaching, and you could avoid a stint on the injury bench as well as improve your running economy and boost your speed.

Foot trackers can improve speed and distance accuracy

Accuracy is another big benefit or tracking from the feet. How many times have you run a race and realised the distance you tracked isn’t the same distance as the course? Or gone out with a mate and both logged different mileage?

That’s because GPS watches can have a distance discrepancy. Even being 3% out can add 1.2km to the marathon distance on your records.

A GPS inaccuracy can prove particularly problematic when you’re racing. If your watch underestimates mileage, for example, it will tell you you’re running at a slower pace than you are. Speed up to stay on target and you could end up running too fast and blowing up before the finish line.

The reason for this inaccuracy is that many watches rely solely on GPS technology to locate where you are. They calculate speed and pace by monitoring signals sent from satellites orbiting the earth, but those readings can be skewed when something obstructs the signal, like tall buildings, trees and tunnels.

The NURVV solution is to combine GPS technology with an advanced inertial navigation system (INS). INS uses motion sensors to pinpoint position, direction and speed without relying on outside signals.

This means NURVV is ideal for tracking indoor and treadmill sessions as well as outdoor runs, and is less affected by GPS-skewing factors that can throw your metrics off course.

No need to miss out on those email alerts

If you’re worried about missing out on the smart notifications you get from a running watch, or seeing your stats in real time rather than waiting till you get home, no fear.

While your run is tracked from your feet, your data appears on your phone with pace, distance, cadence and step length all showing in real time. You can also sync NURVV RUN with your Apple Watch, Garmin, or a number of other compatible devices so the stats appear on your watch, too.

Want to know more of the benefits? Check out the features of NURVV RUN here – you’ll soon understand why we think the future’s at your feet.

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