What do famed CrossFitter Katrin Davidsdottir, NBA baller Steph Curry, and PGA golfer Rory McIlroy all have in common? Have a look at their wrists and you’ll spot the answer.
All of them - alongside a raft of other athletes from triathletes to NFL linebackers - are sporting the Whoop Strap 3.0 and taking steps to listen more closely to their bodies.
So what exactly is WHOOP and why should you integrate it into your life? It’s all about training smarter and making positive steps to improve your recovery so you can smash it during your next big game or workout.
No Strain, no gain
It all begins by measuring what WHOOP calls ‘strain’. By monitoring your heart rate during exercise, WHOOP quantifies the physical load you’re putting on your cardiovascular system.
You’re given a strain rating for your workout on a scale of 0-21 so you instantly know how hard you’ve worked out. You can even monitor how quickly you’re building strain in real time, so you’ll know exactly how hard to push yourself in order to reach your goals.
WHOOP also understands that strain is about more than just the intensity of your exercise. Because you’re wearing the WHOOP Strap all day and night, it knows how the rest of your day is affecting your body as well. Everything from that stressful work presentation to just playing with your kids takes a toll and is reflected in your overall Day Strain score.
Better recovery means better performance
But, where things get really clever with WHOOP is around recovery. As you probably know, you need to allow your body ample recovery time in between intense workouts to avoid putting yourself at risk of injury or overtraining.
WHOOP calculates your recovery based on detailed sleep tracking, resting heart rate and heart rate variability. It gives you a percentage (broken down as red, yellow or green) so that you instantly know how prepared your body is to take on more strain.
Essentially, heart rate variability looks at the variability in time between heart beats. A higher HRV means better recovery. Pair that with quality sleep overnight and you’ll be raring to go before your next training session.
The WHOOP Sleep Coach will also let you know just how much sleep you should be getting in order to hit your goal, whether that’s peak performance or just getting by. With sleep being such an integral part of recovery, WHOOPdetects everything from sleep stages to time spent actually sleeping and not just in bed. This will help you better understand why sometimes you may wake up and still feeling groggy even though you may have thought you got your usual 8 hours..
Alongside your recovery score, you’ll know if you should be going hard, or just going home. Being able to tailor a training plan by programming peak days, but also adjusting on the fly, is what has made WHOOPso appealing to professional athletes, as well as regular fitness enthusiasts.
Putting it all together
Whoop offers truly actionable insights for more effective training and recovery. As WHOOP knows how recovered you are, it can tell you just how hard you should push yourself in your next session through its Strain Coach.
You’ll be given an optimal strain to aim for, but you can still decide how you want to approach your workout. Train a little lower and you’ll speed up your recovery, train a little harder and you’ll approach functional overreaching, helping your body to develop and make fitness gains.
WHOOP is like having a personal coach available 24/7 that can use your own physiological data to make informed training recommendations.Whether you’re looking to run your best half marathon, trying to get faster in the pool, or bust out some new PBs during CrossFit, the WHOOP Strap 3.0 is the tool for you.
This is a paid sponsored story in partnership with WHOOP.