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Fitness News

by Jenna Mahoney

For all of the new tech syndromes they’ve brought us—iPhone Neck, Blackberry Thumb and Screen-induced Insomnia—smartphones have also become as integral to overall wellness-on-the-go as cold-pressed juice.

Thanks to their ability to be practiced anywhere/anytime, yoga and tai chi are two of the beneficiaries of the handheld technology. And like the refrigerator case bursting with selections of blended greens, iTunes is packed with mindful apps. Here are some of our favorites.

Wake Up Yoga

Ease into the day with a little more mindfulness. This alarm-like app aims to erase the frazzled morning routine with guided meditations, instructive yoga and stretching routines. Sessions are five to 15 minutes long and they are customized to your needs and goals. All are accompanied by music.  Free

Salute the Desk

Combat the effects of sitting all day with simple stretching routines performed at the comfort of your desk. Exercises, culled from a series of 27 moves, focus on chest- opening, spine-stretching and all-over stress relief. Track progress, set alarms and share it all over social media, if desired. $3.99

Universal Breathing: Pranayama

The practice of controlling the breath is said to be the base of all meditative benefits. It’s a nuanced discipline that is said to improve mental clarity. Here, music and animated visuals guide you through breathing practices.  Free

Taichi Temple

The graceful movement-with-breath regimen is an ancient Chinese practice that promotes serenity and increases overall health. Led by Tai Chi master LiJian Long, this app uses sensor technology to guide users through the gentle practice. Real time feedback and basic movement instruction make it perfect for beginners.  Free

Turn the Beat Around

Hip-shaking, body-shimmying Zumba is moving to a new groove. The new STRONG by Zumba still moves with the beat, but unlike the traditional dance fitness craze, classes are geared toward a HIIT philosophy. High Intensity Interval Training—workouts that alternate explosive bursts of energetic movement with more restful periods—is an efficient way to scorch calories and burn fat. HIIT also promotes afterburn—the phenom where your body continues to decimate calories post-exercise.

Classes also incorporate all-over strength-training moves such as push-ups, planks and squats. And since this is Zumba, every movement is coordinated with music. Another plus—Rapper/DJ Timbaland is creating exclusive songs for the program. strongbyzumba.com

Made for Walking

Hit the snowy trails for hours on end in the new Bridger 7” Insulated BDry by outdoor wonder-brand Oboz. The waterproof, insulated boots are a marriage of foul-weather gear with stabilizing trail shoes. Ankles are high and supportive, and the rubber sole is extra grippy. Toes stay warm thanks to an enormous amount of Thinsulate. We especially love the molded heel kick for making removing the boots a snap.

With each purchase, the company—which is named after its wind powered headquarters—plants a tree. $185; obozfootwear.com

Roll with It

The mighty foam roller is beloved for its at-home massage qualities, but it doesn’t travel very well. That’s where the new Reflexi comes in handy.

The foot massager is not only designed for on-the-go use, it’s also antibacterial. Toss it in your suitcase, microwave or freezer. Hot or cold, this mini-massager helps alleviate soreness and tightness across the feet. $49.99  shopreflexi.com

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