Rami Alhamad, a mechatronics engineering graduate from the University of Waterloo, has always been an amateur weight lifter. He enjoyed lifting weights at short distances until he experienced what many athletes can relate to—he injured himself.
“It’s a common thing for athletes. Whenever you’re lifting weight’s you’re wondering, is this the right weight that I should be lifting, should I be lifting less or more, how hard should I be training?” Alhamad says. “Those are the kind of questions that came into my head.”
While he was injured, he did research and met two varsity athletes from the University of Toronto, where he was exposed to velocity training – where athletes look at how fast you’re able to move weights instead of just how many pounds you’re moving. While he looked for tools that could measure velocity, he found them cumbersome and difficult to use.
“I also started thinking, how do we get people motivated to train, and how do we get people more excited to be at the gym?” Alhamad says. “I realized that competition and being able to track and train each other is important.”
Alhamad says that that was the vision for PUSH, a startup he co-founded two years ago that provides a range of fitness tracking products that help athletes and their coaches track metrics that can be analyzed. Athletes can wear products like the PUSH band, the company’s core offering, and athletes can look at their metrics on their phone using the PUSH Portal. They can pick whatever exercise they want to do and identify a training goal – whether that’s strength, hypertrophy, endurance or speed. For professional coaches, PUSH also provides an Athlete Dashboard so coaches and their athletes can keep track of schedules and progress, and allows coaches to train their athletes remotely.
Another aspect of what makes their products unique is PUSH Assist, a recommendation engine that gives users feedback to let them know whether to lift more or less weight in order to help athletes optimize their time in the gym.
“We’re a unique product in the wearables space, there’s a lot of day-long trackers that are tracking steps,” Alhamad says. “We designed PUSH to capture movements that are very short and very fast accurately.”
Their products are currently used by professional teams across the NFL, NHL and the NBA, including the Philadelphia Flyers and St. Louis Cardinals.
Though their products right now are targeted to professional athletes that train intensely, Alhamad wants to perfect the product for them and eventually make PUSH more appealing to the everyday fitness enthusiast.
“Over the next year, you’ll be able to see a lot of new cool changes to our product that will make it more engaging and more appealing for everyone else,” he says.