The U.S. Open began on Monday, and besides attracting its regular cast of characters—Roger Federer and his headband, Maria Sharapova and her grunting, Novak Djokovic and his smirks—new technology made a debut. Take a look at the outfits the ball boys are wearing and glimpse the future of wearable technology.
The ball chasers are outfitted in what Ralph Lauren calls his “Polo Tech Smart Shirt.” It’s basically a compression shirt with yarn-based sensors and a bluetooth transmitter juxtaposed with RL’s giant POLO logo. Why, you ask? So the shirt can monitor your breathing and your heart rate, track your steps and gauge how active you are in real time. The data can later be transferred to an app on your smart phone so you can check your fitness level all day long.
These high-tech threads won’t be available to the general public until 2015, but Ralph Lauren has hinted it might migrate the technology to its regular polos, so you can check your heart rate while playing a rousing game of croquet at the local country club.
OMSignal, the technology company RL partnered with for the design, has plans for more wearable technology, such as yoga outfits that can measure the accuracy of your Downward Facing Dog pose. Keep it locked to STACK for more info.
Photo: Ralph Lauren