Thirsty (for Knowledge) Thursday: Swim Straighter in Open Water

>> Thursday, January 08, 2015

Adam recently tweeted this to me and Ray:



I hadn't heard of Iolite. But of COURSE techie Ray had already tested it. Iolite is a small set of color lights on your goggles that you see in your periphery to let you know if you're swimming in a straight line.


Photo from Ray's testing - inside the goggles.

You can either pre-program a swim route (like plotting where the buoys will be in a triathlon), or you can just swim straight (assuming you can) for 10 meters, and it will keep you on that line. Different colors light up if you're going straight (green), a little to one side (yellow), or WAY to one side (red).

Check out Ray's post about this, which is interesting purely from the "this is how prototyping works" standpoint.


Another shot of the prototype from Ray's post. The yellow "chunk" goes under your swim cap.

Here's about 5% of Ray's post, showing some of the data the Iolite gave him once he was done:

In my case, I was sometimes purposefully swimming a bit off-course to see if it would correct and how well it would do in getting me back on track. For example, look at this little section below (swimming from right to left). In this case I was mostly on track until I made a turn to the left. It warned me first with a less-critical alert, and then it went all critical on me. I then corrected slightly (the mid-point of the the turn), and then it got upset as I overcorrected, ultimately requiring me to re-correct again.



The folks behind the unit said that you do need to be a bit careful the first few times swimming that you don’t immediately overcorrect too much with the first yellow warning light, and that you shouldn’t be making major changes till you hit the red warning lights. Still, I found it pretty easy to follow along.

Again, Ray tested a prototype, but the Iolite site now has official models for sale for $199:



If you want to drop $199 to be able to swim a straighter line, then check out Iolite. Thanks for alerting me to it Adam, and thanks for the review post, Ray.

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3 comments:

Melissa @ Faster In Water 1:31 PM, January 09, 2015  

Ooooh. I don't hate sighting as much as I hate spending $200, but dang, that sounds cool!

Steve Stenzel 9:37 PM, January 09, 2015  

Ha! Melissa, I'm 1000000% with you! :)

Anonymous,  6:10 PM, January 12, 2015  

This is the weirdest post, as you're just ripping someone else's post off.

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