Everyone knows that posture can affect one’s physical health, but who would have thought it can also impact one’s emotions and psychological wellbeing? Studies show that maintaining a slumped posture for extended periods of time can decrease one’s energy, foster a sense of helplessness, and ultimately lead to a depressed mood. On the other hand, maintaining the optimal, upright posture can boost confidence and elevate one’s overall feeling. Over the last century the average American’s lifestyle has become more sedentary, and be it for work or play, an increasing number of people are spending the vast majority of their day sitting in front of a screen – most likely with poor posture! As a result, millions of people are currently suffering from the adverse effects of bad posture.
Fortunately, a number of companies have focused on developing new technologies to help users monitor and correct their posture. One of the most recent products is the UPRIGHT GO by Upright Technologies out of Yahud, Israel. UPRIGHT GO is a small discreetly worn device that attaches directly to the users’ upper back to train the person to maintain an optimal posture.
We at Medgadget covered UPRIGHT GO’s Kickstarter campaign a couple months ago, which ultimately became one of Kickstarter’s most successful wearable device campaigns. More than 13,500 backers supported it and collectively pledged over one million dollars. Upright Technologies has recently shipped the first UPRIGHT GO units to their backers, and we were lucky enough to get our hands on one of the units for a two week trial. Here is our short review of the new product:
Unboxing and Set-up
UPRIGHT GO’s packaging is immaculate – a very sleek design with an eye-catching, bright green color. The product comes with a small travel case, USB charging cable, and five replaceable, double-sided, silicon adhesive patches to attach the device to the users’ body. Each patch can be used approximately 20 times and only needs to be gently cleaned with an alcohol pad or wet towel before each use. Doing the math, these five patches should last approximately three months. One can purchase ten extra patches for $14.95 at anytime or for a discounted price of $12.95 with the initial purchase of the device. We find it convenient that one may purchase extra patches when first ordering the device, as this saves the hassle of having to reorder new patches and waiting for them to arrive.
UPRIGHT GO is easy to set up and operate. Users must only download the free app on their Android or iOS mobile device and input their basic biometrics. The app will then generate a personalized training program, starting with a few minutes of active training each day and gradually increasing training time every couple of days. The user can always train longer or shorter than what the program suggests.
The UPRIGHT GO unit is small, lightweight, made of smooth, white silicone and with an LED light status indicator. The device is thin enough to allow for discreet use wherever you are. It encompasses a single all-in-one control button that allows users to easily turn the device on, calibrate it, and toggle through the various modes while wearing it.
After turning UPRIGHT GO on, it will immediately connect via Bluetooth to the users’ mobile device. The user then utilizes the double-sided patch to attach the device to the desired spot on the upper back. Of note, UPRIGHT GO solely trains upper back posture while Upright Technologies first product, UPRIGHT PRO, is able to train both upper and lower back posture. After placing the device on the upper back, the user gets into an upright posture and hits the control button twice to calibrate the device. Since placement of the device may vary with each use, the device needs to be recalibrated each time. UPRIGHT GO has two operational modes. The first is an active, training mode in which the UPRIGHT GO senses the user’s posture and produces a gentle vibration when the user begins to slouch. When we say gentle, we mean the vibration intensity will definitely grab the user’s attention but will not cause a full-out startle response. It is not painful. The duration of the vibration and the sensitivity of the sensor can also be adjusted in the app based on user preference.
The second mode is a tracking, or observation, mode in which the device only records the user’s posture without vibrating when the optimal posture is lost. Users may switch between the two modes by simply hitting the control button.
The double-sided patches provide UPRIGHT GO with good adherence to the skin, but it is not superglue. Users should know that the device might slip with excessive sweating, especially with an older patch. Also, the device is not waterproof. UPRIGHT GO has a rechargeable lithium-ion battery capable of lasting up to two days when fully charged.
UPRIGHT GO definitely achieves its goal of getting users to pay closer attention to their posture throughout the day and make the appropriate modifications. Although we did not objectively measures our posture throughout the two weeks, we nevertheless felt that our posture had improved. Even without the device donned, we found ourselves making postural adjustments more frequently than before using UPRIGHT GO. Compliance is likely one of the main factors in whether or not users notice significant postural improvements. Given the device is easy to operate, comfortable to wear, and provides real-time feedback, we believe UPRIGHT GO admirably attempts to address this issue. At last check, UPRIGHT GO retails for $99, which we believe is an affordable and worthwhile device for the many individuals seeking improved their posture.