May 4, 2012 at 2:22 PM ET
When rhythmic gymnast Mimi Cesar hits the mat at the 2012 summer Olympics in London, the host country favorite may have an added edge – she’s been training with a vibrating suit that’s helping her hone her routine to perfection.
The suit, called MotivePro, is similar to the electric-fence dog collar that shocks Fido when he wanders out of bounds; only the training gadget is loaded with technology to track its wearer’s body in space and time, providing instantaneous feedback such as an irritating vibration or noise when the move isn’t perfect.
“The system can also record the movements as well, to use after the event. This means that archives can be built up showing relative performance over time, any long term trajectories identified and the use of the data to make averages amongst particular user groups.”
In addition to Cesar, who is featured wearing the suit in the video below, the technology could find uses everywhere from the golf course, where it could help duffers hit balls long and straight off the tee box, to hospitals, where it could help train health care workers how to properly lift heavy objects.
As nursing student Owen Dunham says in the video, the vibration “is a fairly irritating sensation that makes you respond.” A little irritation now, though, is a small price to pay for gold medals and a life free of back pain.
--Via Discovery News
John Roach is a contributing writer for msnbc.com. To learn more about him, check out his website and follow him on Twitter. For more of our Future of Technology series, watch the featured video below.