WHOOP: Pushing Performance, Preventing Injury
WHOOP has found a niche in the wearables world. It’s not worn by the average FitBit user (a self-directed classification) – instead, it’s used by elite athletes, coaches, and trainers to bring their performance to the next level. To these athletes, even the slightest physical improvements can reduce injuries. To them, seconds can break records, and accurate recovery time can win games. In April of this year, WHOOP became the officially licensed recovery wearable of the NFL Players Association – the first time a players association in professional sports has partnered with a wearable tech company.
The team at WHOOP is a mix of athletes, physiologists, and engineers. They realized that while more than 60% of Americans track their health daily, elite athletes need more than steps counted to improve, and the technology at the higher performance level was lacking.
WHOOP collects and processes an impressive amount of data. Five sensors collect information 100 times per second, making it the most technical of it’s kind. All of the data builds into three easy to understand metrics: strain, recovery, and sleep. Measuring strain is vital for workouts and daily activities to positively build upon each other, and sleep and recovery time are essential to preventing stress and overtraining. WHOOP also measures resting heart rate and heart rate variability.
The Company claims that only a few months of using WHOOP can lead to visible results, including a decrease of injuries by 60%. The Company’s testimonials cover athletes, albeit male heavy, from all major sports. WHOOP is winning the favor of professional athletes, and if they get this right, could dominate in the broader consumer market in the years to come.