Whether at school or the dinner table, at some point everyone has been scolded with the words “sit up straight!” and “don’t slouch!”
We can all fall foul of poor posture at times but the long-term repercussions of ignoring curving shoulders can be significant. Long-term damage can reportedly range from muscle and joint pain, to mental health issues. Azerbaijani Imagine Cup finalist NoObs believes that good posture is as important as eating right, exercising and getting a good night’s sleep. The team has developed an inventive way of reminding us to give our posture the attention it deserves.
In today’s tech-powered world, it’s not uncommon for people to spend hours bent over their laptops or smartphones. Exacerbating the problem is that Europeans are spending more time than ever sitting at desks for our day jobs, making it easy to develop bad habits like slouching. It’s up to each of us to find effective ways to maintain a healthy position for our back and shoulder during the day.
Designed to help avoid the development of symptoms associated with incorrect spinal position, the team’s project, ‘Spinal’, uses smartphone technology to help users manage their posture. Deploying special sensors via wearable technology, reports can be accessed through an app that provides feedback on posture whether sitting, walking or working. This clever approach can also provide real-time alerts when a user slips into an unsafe position, delivering instructions on how to correct their posture.
The team, made up of four engineering and computer science students, was inspired to take on this issue during a discussion at university – looking around the lecture theatre they noticed that almost everyone was slouching in one way or another. Keen to work on projects that would positively impact the quality of peoples’ lives, and realising how widespread this problem really is, they were determined to find a solution rooted in technology.
By enhancing awareness and increasing the control that people have over this issue, NoObs hopes to help prevent posture-related problems worldwide.
Find more information on the NoObs team here.