When Anxiety Knocks
sports & fitness | stress
Juliana Chua works for Zensorium, which is located in Singapore. Zensorium came up with a product called Bing which helps one measure oneself passively on a day-to-day basis. The product not only measures mood, but it also tracks sleep and activity. In this talk, she shares how she used quantification to temper the travails of her own life, as well as help both national athletes and regular working people.
My name is Juliana and I’m actually from Zensorium. So three years ago we set up this company into health and wellness and we have never looked back since. The company is actually based in Singapore and today I would like to share with you on the emotional side of things.
So when we talk about tracking, a lot of people are looking at specific tracking, and that’s where we see the context, meaning, the contextual part of it is non-existent, so which is why we want to look at more of the emotional side of things and see where we can bring it into wearables to let people know more about it.
So when we talk to a lot of businesses, we go around talking to people that the economy in America is actually suffering at $300 billion every year. And where we look at it is around stress and performance stress that can be your good stress portion, and of course naturally you get exhausted and get into the fatigue part of it, and that can actually be causing all of your bad stress.
So, when you look at the health situation opposed to the comfort zone and over time that can become chronic and it can give you ill health and eventually cause a breakdown, which eventually leads to depression. So that can be a bigger part of the thing that we are trying to resolve, but initially we tried to see tendency of why we catch up with it.
So this is the model that we look at, where you have the two-dimensional kind of effects, and also on each quadrant we have the excitement, contentment, depression, and distress. This model is actually from Vancouver in the 1980s, and what we look at is, rather than being qualitative about your study you want to be quantitative, so the physiological side of the measures. How can actually someone measure yourself on a day-to-day basis, passively, and this is the key reason why we came out with our product Bing. We have been building out of R&D since six years ago and we came out with the optical tracking of it.
So not only measuring mood we also track sleep and also your activity. And today, what we are focusing about is the quadrants of it and how we came out with the size of it.
So the first quadrant I’m going to talk about is more on the stress portion, that’s where we track your slavery cortisol, benchmarking to the blood pressure. So these are studies that we have done over a period of two years, and when your brain actually gets stressed up, you actually evolve a kind of hormone into your kidney and that’s where it clings on to the cortisol or adrenaline. Your body then gets into the flight or fight responds more for your survival, and in tracking cortisol this is the study we did in Bangkok with a large amount of people.
What we did was we put them into three tasks; resting and then doing a mental task like public speaking and that’s where they get the stress really high up and then after that we get them into recovery. At each stage of it we actually track their cortisol.
And this is a study – I’m only taking a snapshot of our 10 subjects that we have. 40% is what we had as a benchmark for the stress subjects, and you can see the big color portion, where as soon as they get into public speaking, the cortisol level shoots up.
And where a lot of people are just focusing on HRV, they are looking more at the blood pressure and you can see that the blood pressure when actually benchmark together. It is more sensitive to the changes in cortisol and that’s where the magic is really.
So now correlating cortisol with stress, we can see the blood pressure, cortisol and benchmark and there you can see there is a big correlation of how the blood pressure variation for it.
So that’s how we translate the information from blood pressure into stress for the first segment. This one is actually also where we track people who are in a little bit of a depression, and understand, this algorithm also works with people who are actually suffering from depression, and the factors are actually much better as well.
So now going into the calm state where we track people under meditation, doing yoga and doing coherent breathing and that’s where we look at the variability a little bit more. So HRV as we know is a little bit more one-dimensional, so where you have your HRV coherence, what happens is all the noisy where you are feeling negative. Once you get into coherent breathing it actually smooths out what your measurements are, so the more positive feeling therefore looks into a more calm state of mind.
So there we were doing the study of tracking the students under meditation, where we analyze their breathing methods and strapping them up with all the wires, and these are the medical equipment that we use, which costs thousands of dollars and recording over a period of time their HRV in the noisy period.
The last one I want to talk about is more on the excited, where we follow a group of professional athletes where we track for both their blood pressure and also their HRV. And there we have a group of professional athletes where they actually track over 11 sessions of training and competition. So each competition can be regional and it can also be national. So there we also track them with medical equipment measuring their blood pressure and HRV. And over there, you can see the excitement zone, each time they get into a competition and over on the other side you have the average performance tracking where we leverage on the national coaches to understand more on the qualitative side; what is their performance rating like.
So we only here eight athletes, where you can see athlete number five where there is not at all nonexistent in excitement and there is actually correlates to the quantitative of the results of the national coach where you can see the measurements are very low.
So eventually what it can map is actually giving you a distribution of what your daily measurements are. So at every hour when you track stress, you can actually distribute it into a 24-hour cycle about what the daily measurements are and where can you improve on.
What we really want to work on is actually helping people to know themselves and eventually taking good care by taking short breaks and also getting enough sleep to ensure a healthy mind and body, which will all be featured in the app as well.
So this is as far as what we have built and currently we benchmark with a lot of devices out there, and I would say I want to benchmark to compete with the Apple iWatch, but what we try to see is there are so many different aspects of what Zensorium actually offers. We really focus on your mood sensing and that’s where we see that we ace our self in giving something that none of the trackers out there have. This is the part where they all measure their physical and also your sleep as well and one we also look at of course is user perspective, and we are more concerned with the long-term of the battery lifetime, especially for the price. We tried to be very competitive and that’s actually where we leverage a lot of people in helping us a lot and these studies we’ve done in the University, with all the good people and all the medical equipment.
So the company since we actually start up three years ago and formed the company six years ago we did our R&D, and we have achieved numerous awards in innovation. We see ourselves as technology people who are trying to bring a different kind of technology to the market. And today, this is our second product; the mindfulness tracker, where it’s something that we’ve built to be very passive measuring yourself hourly and you don’t have to do anything. And we hope that this product can actually increase everybody’s mindfulness to a greater height.
So thank you everyone.