Breathing is something we all do unconsciously, so it’s easy to take it for granted. However, the Prana wearable is here to help you take your breathing to the next level.
The Prana wearable is a simple wearable that tracks breathing and posture. It also has guided practices that teach diaphragmatic breathing and various other breathwork techniques. If that wasn’t enough, the Prana wearable also tracks body fat and other relevant data metrics.
This isn’t a replacement for your Apple Watch or Fitbit, but it isn’t meant to be. This cleverly designed product sets out to do a small number of things well.
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Here’s everything you need to know about the Prana wearable.
The Prana wearable device
Visually, the Prana wearable itself is barebones. It’s a circular, oblong plastic disk with a retractable cord that fits around your body.
There’s no display on the device; you’ll find just one button on its exterior surface.
You can wear the Prana on your lower back to track posture and breathing. Additional wear options include wearing the Prana on your upper chest to track breathing only.
Within the Prana are proprietary sensors that can intelligently track your breathing and posture.
Additionally, the Prana has other sensor technology that can track up to 15 different body measurements, including body fat percentage and muscle mass.
According to the company, the Prana device’s battery lasts up to a full day on a charge.
However, unlike your Apple Watch or Fitbit, the Prana isn’t meant to be worn all day. Instead, it’s a device that you’ll put on for short breathing or posture training sessions.
As mentioned earlier, you can also use the Prana to measure your body fat percentage on various parts of your body. This works by using the retractable strap to encircle a specific body part.
The Prana isn’t going to win any beauty contests, but that’s not what it’s designed to do. This is a lightweight device that you can easily take with you.
It’s comfortable enough to wear over or beneath your clothes. And, since all of the actual user interactivity happens on the app, the Prana device mostly stays out of the way.
The Prana app
The Prana app itself is pleasantly designed and feature-rich.
When you first open the app, you’ll see a simple menu that lets you select three options: Tracking, Training, and Live Graph.
- Tracking: This feature lets you track your breathing, your posture, or both simultaneously. From there, it’ll show you statistics about your breath and posture — including respiration rate, the ratio of your inhales and exhales, and how upright you’re sitting.
- Training: The Training feature guides you through up to 80 different breathing exercises in categories like “lung capacity” and “sleep.” There’s also a game-like mode and buzzer-based training options.
- Live Graph: The Live Graph section gives you live data and feedback as you sit upright or breathe. This is useful for those who don’t want to do a guided session.
The Training Mode has two primary options: Visual Training and Buzzer Training.
The first uses a Flappy Bird-like game mode to guide you through deep, diaphragmatic breaths. The buzzer training mode uses haptic feedback to offer guidance.
There are also tabs for body measurements and History. The former lets you measure your body fat percentage, while the latter keeps tabs on your previous breathing and posture practices and body composition data.
There’s also a settings tab for managing your account and device.
Despite the relatively simple app and interface, the Prana device packs a lot of capabilities under the hood.
For example, it can passively monitor your breathing and posture and alert you to less-than-ideal breathing patterns or slouching.
The more than 80 breathing practices mentioned earlier include time-tested techniques such as Yoga Pranayama and Tummo.
The science of the Prana device
Intuitively, taking a deep breath or doing a breathing exercise is beneficial. However, there’s a lot of science to back up what ancient yogis and others have known for centuries.
The American Lung Association notes that regular breathing exercises can help expel stale air from your lungs and increase oxygen levels. One study also found that rhythmic breathing can improve your immune function.
There are mental benefits, too. Diaphragmatic breathing is known to help reduce stress and anxiety. According to Harvard University, deep breathing can help you disengage from distracting thoughts and sensations.
Another piece of research found that rhythmic breathing patterns like those found in yoga or on the Prana app can have positive effects on wide-ranging conditions like insomnia, stress-related illnesses, depression, and anxiety.
As far as good posture, there are many benefits to keeping your back upright, too.
For example, good posture is often associated with reduced low back pain, increased energy levels, less tension in the shoulders and neck, and a decreased risk of wear and tear on the joints.
Should you get the Prana device?
Ultimately, the Prana device is a single-focus device. It sets out to do one job — improve your breathing and posture — and it does it well.
This isn’t a fancy device. It’s not an Apple Watch that you bring with you and use to track all of your activity throughout the day. But the Prana’s singular focus turns out to be a strength in some ways.
The Prana is also unique enough to warrant purchasing if you are interested in breathwork or improving your posture.
You won’t find another wearable on the market that does quite what the Prana does.
While there are some other breathing-related wearables, they often require a special shirt or a form factor that isn’t as convenient as the Prana.
The Prana device could be a great companion for desk workers. Strap on the device when you get to work, and you’ll be gently guided toward a healthier upright posture.
Want to take a quick break? The Prana device could then guide you through a literal midday breather.
If you’re serious about measuring your body fat and muscle mass, you may want to opt for a dedicated device.
For the average user that wants a simple posture device, the body measurement features are definitely an added bonus.
If you want to learn how to breathe better or improve your posture, the Prana is a simple way to do so.