I don’t know about you, but I plan to eat dangerously unhealthy amounts of indulgent foods over the next couple of weeks. Pastries, cheeses, meats, roasties -- even the nasty sweet stuff.
What I’m not so keen on is sitting around getting all flabby and shapeless, which is a little easier said than done. After all, running’s boring and the gym’s for dicks. For those of you with me, I’ve put together a short list of sports gadgets that should encourage you to get off your poor, creased backside and out of the house once in a while. This festive season needn’t just be about the meat sweats.
You’ll find no dubious smartwatches below, promise.
Wilson X Connected Football
A controversial first listing, seeing as American Football isn’t proper football, but Wilson’s connected egg has the potential to both get you out and about and get you interested in a new sport. The NFL’s a Thing in the UK now, so why not pretend to be a quarterback you’ve never heard of and lob this around your local park? Go on, stop pretending it’s too cold.
Working alongside an app, it tracks your throw distance, velocity, spiral efficiency, spin rate, and if the football was caught or dropped, adding everything up to give you a score. If you hate American Football, just pretend it’s a rugby ball.
Price: £150 | Buy It Here
I know, I know, it’s a thing for another American sport, but bear with us. The DribbleUp is sort of like the basketball equivalent of the Wilson X above, keeping tabs on your dribbling technique and grading your skills through an app. Unfortunately, the software’s only available on iOS and it doesn’t have the power to make you four feet taller.
Price: $79.99 (£65) | Buy It Here
Adidas miCoach Smart Ball
We may as well get it over with. Adidas has the miCoach smart ball, the football equivalent of the above, which delivers feedback on power, spin, strike and trajectory, along with guidance.
Price: £139.95 | Buy It Here
Perhaps you want the kids out of the way, so you can indulge in a bit of lazy love-making over the holidays. The SockIt could be just the thing, clipping around the resident small-footed child’s football (proper football) boots and making them feel bad for toe-poking the ball instead of striking it like you showed them 800 times.
Price: $19.95 (£16) | Buy It Here
DT Smart Putter
Alright, this one probably won’t have much of an impact on your fitness, but it could help your blood pressure. Looking a lot like a putter with an inbuilt level, it’s essentially... a putter with an inbuilt level. It’s designed to help you read the greens so you don’t blow your top too often, though it’s unfortunately only available for right-handers at the moment.
Price: $69.95 (£57) | Buy It Here
Iofit Smart Golf Shoes
Sticking with golf, we present the Iofit smart golf shoes. They’re not available to ship just yet -- February seems to be the plan -- but are well worth keeping an eye out for. The onboard sensors analyse your stance, weight distribution and technique, feeding the information to an app that visualises it, and shows you what you’re doing wrong and how you can improve.
Price: $249 (£175) | Buy It Here