Improving running techniques

As a runner you might feel that there are improvements to make in your technique. Even-though you’re past those awkward and clumsy teenage-days, its sometimes hard to know what all the parts of your body are doing… And it might make all the difference when you run that marathon if your elbow has the right angle or your feet are touching the ground too far apart. Together with Oystr and adidas, we built an experience, where we used cameras to give you a 360˚ perspective on your running!

A truck and a treadmill

For the summer season and all the outside events, such as marathons and runner meet-ups, adidas planned to make a “runbase”. A vehicle where they could showcase its products and activate runners in different ways. At the center of the experience was the 360˚ treadmill; a chance for you as a runner to get educated by a professional run-coach, aided by cameras to catch all the angles of your step.

Perfect focus

We researched cameras to find a perfect fit, between cost and quality. The result was an HD-camera with a Carl Zeiss lens, which had an amazing macro-lens - even-though it was just a USB webcamera. No need for large and expensive cameras, and still top quality! Everything good, so far… But who knew how hard it was to get the input of more than two cameras into an interface? Turns out this was a fairly unexplored territory, sort of like the bar next door to our office - just kidding, we are regulars (mostly due to… unexplored territory in the digital world). Through some tweaking of a UNIX-system, we finally managed to get four cameras run simultaneously. We rigged the cameras around a treadmill, started running and saw ourselves from angles we wish we never saw… 

Runbase 1
Runbase 2
Handling the input

We built an interface in Processing (Java), where you were able to see an overview of all angles, or go into detail in one angle. The challenge here was having the interface run smoothly with four HD-camera video-streams simultaneously. Through optimizations in the code, we could make slick transitions, and the experience became seamless.

Supporting the coach

The interaction was custom built for a run-coach, that would operate the interface, while pointing out what could be improved when running. Together we adjusted the angles to be the most useful in an evaluation of the runners movements.

Runbase 3
Going the extra mile

We went to Gothenburg, to launch the campaign at the half-marathon called Göteborgsvarvet. At the event we saw tons of excited runners preparing for the race, by getting up on the 360˚ treadmill and improving their technique. And there we left it, to roam the roads, in search of runners with lousy self-control…

Runbase 4

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