Before I could get started using the Sensoria products, I had a bit of homework to do. The packet of directions included with my product was long. In fact, I was a little overwhelmed at first. However, the directions were clear and straight-forward. My first task was to charge the anklets that attach to the socks (allowing the app to read what is happening with your feet.) Next, I had to download the app to my phone. Once I had the app, I needed to input information about myself to help the app be more accurate. From my height and weight to whether I preferred miles or kilometers to how chatty I wanted my virtual coach to be – this took a little time. I even had the option to set up my shoe closet. This feature allows you to input what shoes you are running in so that you can see if your shoe changes your run and you can even track how many miles you’ve run in your shoes. I chose to skip this option on my initial set-up, just for time’s sake. There was also a section to input your running goals if you wished to do so. This app has everything!
In addition to the Sensoria socks, I also received a Sensoria heart rate monitor and sports bra. This allowed me to include heart rate in the list of feedback I would get on my run. The sports bra fits well, is padded, and is quite comfortable and supportive. When getting ready to use the heart rate monitor feature, I had to wet the heart rate sensors on the inside of the sports bra. Then I attached the heart rate monitors to the snaps on the outside of the sports bra band. This was quick and easy. Once I had the heart rate monitor attached, it quickly paired with my app and I immediately could see my heart rate. (For men, Sensoria makes a t-shirt that you can attach the heart rate monitor to.)
Next, I put on the smart socks and attached the anklets to the spiky magnet on the outside of the socks. I have to say, this looks a little goofy. I got a little bit self-conscious, thinking that everyone was going to notice my strange-looking socks. However, when you roll the socks down over the anklet (shown above), it is much less conspicuous. The anklets then had to be paired with the app. I had some difficulty figuring out which anklet was which, as I couldn’t find the code on the outside of the box. I finally found the code on a sticker on the inside of each anklet. Once I figured this out, I marked the inside of each anklet with a Sharpie indicating left or right, so that I would have that information quickly and easily for my next use.
In order for the Sensoria products to record to the app, I had to run with my phone. This is something I am not used to doing, so I felt really geared up as I headed out for my run. I had chosen the “Chatty” option for my virtual coach because I was curious what information I would receive. I couldn’t make myself choose “Very Chatty”, as I was afraid I might not like her after awhile if I went that route. Just seconds into my run, my coach announced, “Failure to land on ball!” That made me laugh until she said it again. Then I got paranoid. Am I really not landing on the ball of my foot? Is she going to yell at me my entire run? But, once I settled in to my pace and stride, my coach quieted down. Periodically she would tell me my pace. I thought perhaps it was my average pace for the mile, but it wasn’t. I’m not quite sure what caused the pace announcements, but the 4 times she told me did not average out to be my overall average pace for the run. So at the moment, that remains a mystery to me. Her pace announcements did make me giggle a bit though, as she pronounced seconds like “see-cahnds.”
A couple of times I kicked my anklet with my other foot and I got worried that I would knock it off. However, it stayed put. At one point my coach told me my anklet was disconnected so I stopped to adjust it. However, after a couple of those announcements, I figured out that my anklet wasn’t disconnected from my sock, but that it had disconnected from the app. That was temporary and resolved itself as I continued on. I received a couple more “Failure to land on ball!” warnings, but they were few and far between. For the most part, my chatty coach wasn’t that chatty. And for that I am thankful.
When I finished my run, I was able to view all my data on the app. Calories, heart rate, distance, pace, speed, ascent, descent, elevation, foot landing, foot contact, steps and cadence were all listed on my screen. That’s a whole lot of information from a run! I clicked on each item and it went to a graph-like screen for that data. The graph wasn’t helpful at all to me, as it seemed to be lacking some of the parameters, so I just stuck with the original screen with the numbers. I also discovered that just moments after my run was complete that I received an email from Sensoria with an “End of Session Report.” This also included a link to the website where I could log-in and get more detailed information. I was able to see where most of the pressure was put on my feet during my run. That was pretty cool. I was also happy to find out that I landed on the ball of my foot 92% of the time. Not perfect, but at least I was usually landing in the optimal region – helping minimize running injury. I need to add a few more runs in order to get additional data, but it was pretty amazing to see all that information from just a pair of socks and a sports bra.
I have to admit, that although I was concerned about wearing all the equipment during my run, it really wasn’t all that noticeable once I got going. I when I was finished and able to see all the data, it made me want to get out for another run with Sensoria again soon. This isn’t something I would wear on every run, but I will use it periodically to see how I’m doing on my cadence, foot landing, etc. I am curious if it will change much when I get new shoes or if it will remain the same (Stay tuned and I’ll report back again later). And, in case you are wondering, the socks and the sports bra can be washed! I just had to remove the anklets from the socks and the heart rate monitor from the sports bra and wash – in cold water.
This technology is amazing. Running coaches and runners alike will love having this feedback that makes for a thorough training tool. For more information, see the video below or go to the Sensoria website. Products can be purchased from sensoriafitness.com
Pricing for Sensoria Fitness products
Socks and anklet: $199
Sports bra/heart rate monitor: $139
T-shirt/heart rate monitor: $149
Complete running system (2 pairs of socks, 2 anklets, t-shirt or sports bra, and heart rate monitor: $389-$399