I recently found an affordable gadget, the Upright Go, which has helped me a lot with my posture, so I wanted to share it with our readers. I am not a gadget junkie (like a certain husband I could mention!), but I do love this one.
As with most cyclists, I find it difficult to remember to keep my shoulders back and stand up straight. The cycling posture is so forward focused, often with rounded shoulders, that it is easy to fall into a “stooped over” posture when I am not on the bike. Not only is bad posture bad for our health, but it makes us look less confident and like someone who is more easily victimized. As a woman in my early 60’s, these things are front of mind for me. I want to look as athletic and youthful as I feel, always. In fact, I have struggled with maintaining good posture most of my life. As I look at my grandchildren hunched over their iPads, I believe a lot more of us will struggle with this in the future.
Enter, the Upright Go Posture Trainer and Corrector. I saw this product in an online ad, and I was immediately intrigued by the idea of simply placing a small device onto my upper spine to monitor my posture. I immediately ordered one from Amazon to try it out.
The product comes in a cheerful bright green and white box, complete with a small supply of alcohol wipes, adhesives, the Upright Go unit (which looks like a small white computer mouse), a charging cord, and a small carrying case to keep everything together.
How to Set Up Your Posture Trainer
Once charged, you sync the unit with your cell phone, using the Upright Go App from your store of choice. I am using an Android device, a Samsung phone. Once you have the app downloaded turn the Upright Go unit on and enable the Bluetooth connection on your cell phone. The unit will flash blue to connect with your phone, then green when in it has connected.
Using the adhesive, attach the unit to the center of your spine on your upper back. (I find this easy to do, but Joe usually needs help.)
Start by setting your posture using the “Set Posture” icon at the top right side of the screen. The green person animation in the App gives you a good visual of your postural position. Hit the Start button once you are happy, and the unit will buzz twice to tell you that your posture has been set. Now you can move to Training Mode.
Training Mode on the Upright Go
In Training Mode, the device will buzz whenever you slouch. Of course, it will also buzz if you bend over to tie your shoes! That can get annoying, but the training sessions are as short as you want them to be. Of course, the purpose of these sessions is to make you mindful of your posture, so that you start to improve it. After being in Training Mode, I find I am more vigilant about my posture so I self-correct often during the day.
After you have completed a Training session, you toggle the device into Tracking Mode.
Tracking Mode on the Upright Go
In Tracking Mode, the device sits quietly on your back and monitors the amount of time you are in a good posture versus the amount of time you are not. There is no corrective “buzz” in Tracking Mode. However, if you look at the app, you will find that it is showing your posture. So, if I am finding it difficult to assess where I am at with my posture, I can look at my body position on the App to see if I need to make any adjustments.
I can also review my stats at any time during the day to observe my progress. If I am unhappy with my results or I am taking on a new task, I can toggle the unit back into Training Mode so that I will keep getting the corrective “buzz” until I improve my posture. After I have reset my posture, I can toggle back to Tracking Mode and carry on with my day.
The App also allows you to observe the amount of charge in the unit. There is a visual at the top right of the Settings pull down icon at the top left side of the screen.
Improving My Posture with my Upright Go
On my first day of using the Upright Go, I was horrified to learn that I was only upright for 22% of the eight hours I wore the device. That means I was slouched over 78% of the time! Using the Upright Go daily, I was able to achieve upright posture for 43% of the time by the end of the third day. One week later I was upright 95% of the time. That day I used the device for 15 hours, so that was a great result! Obviously, the results will vary based on the activities you are doing each day.
The creators of the Upright Go recommend that you aim for upright posture 80% – 90% of the day, otherwise you can look stiff.
The unit does not take too long to charge, and I found it held a charge for at least two full days of use. I was also able to reuse the adhesive pads for two to three days at a time, which is useful because it can get a little expensive if you dispose of the adhesive units after every use.
Ordering Extra Supplies for the Upright Go
I found it very difficult to order supplies direct from Upright Go. When I placed an order for more adhesive pads, they shipped the product to the address on my PayPal account, instead of the address which I specified on my order. (Joe and I travel a lot and quite often need to ship to addresses that are different from our home address.) Once I alerted Upright Go to this problem, it took them a very long time to ship out a replacement product, even with lots of follow-up from me.
In the meantime, I found adhesive kits were available on Amazon. Amazon seems to be able to easily accept a variety of shipping addresses, so I only order from them now. There is no difference in price, whether you purchase from Upright Go or Amazon.
The only reservation I have about the product is that it is not easy to share with your partner. Once I had gone through the training, I found that I did not need to use the Upright Go every day, but preferred to monitor myself only a couple of days a week. I passed the unit along to Joe so he could give it a try.
Once he had downloaded the App and connected, we found it difficult to sync the unit with our phones if the other party had their Bluetooth activated. I also found that the unit dropped the sync with my phone if Joe switched on his Bluetooth for any other purpose. Joe has given up trying to use my Upright Go, and is planning to buy his own. The bottom line is that the Upright Go bonds best with only one user.
Despite this small shortcoming, I highly recommend this product to anyone who wants to improve their posture to appear more confident, attractive, healthy, and younger. Who doesn’t want those results? Also, it would make an unusual and thoughtful gift for someone you love.
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