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The Best Wellness Apps of 2021

Headspace

Headspace

At least a few of us here at OT use this one, so we can endorse it wholeheartedly. If it’s your first-time trying meditation, there are few better inductions into it than Headspace. As one of the biggest names in accessible guided meditation, they offer a solid, comprehensive range of different, digestible audio classes ranging from complete beginners to more advanced stuff aimed at improving productivity or simply helping you drift off to sleep. There’s even meditating for kids if you need that five minutes off.

More details at Headspace.

Noom

Noom

Noom isn’t your usual weight loss app. Where most of them just keep track of your calorie intake and tell you what to cut out, Noom takes a psychological approach and instead of offering a quick fix aims to change your habits and hopefully add some healthy new ones. Part of that is tracking your exercise each day and your key health stats – weight, blood pressure and blood sugar – but the greater part is one-to-one coaching, as well as articles and recommendations from personal trainers, nutritionists and behavioural psychologists. It’s an approach that takes a bit more investment, but one that reaps life-altering changes for the better.

More details at Noom.

My Possible Self

My Possible Self

Lockdown’s not been good for any of our mental wellbeing, with depression and loneliness on the rise and fewer people to help us out of any thought processes we’d rather avoid. Enter My Possible Self, which helps track your feelings and emotions to recognise any potential patterns and problems that they may cause. Pair that with a number of self-help modules to teach you how to deal with stress, anxiety and loss, My Possible Self can help keep you on an even keel. It’s something that, even if you don’t think you need it, is a good thing to check in on once in a while.

More details at My Possible Self.

Sleep Cycle

Sleep Cycle

The name says it all really. Even if you’re not getting the fresh air and exercise you need to have a restful night’s sleep, getting the requisite hours is incredibly important. It improves focus and productivity of course, but also your immune system and happiness. Sleep Cycle is the app designed to help you make the most of your shut-eye. It’s pretty simple; the app tracks your sleep based on breathing, sound and movement. You set the rough time you’d like to wake up and the app does so when you’re sleeping your lightest. That means less of a groggy feeling when you open your eyes and the eventual syncing of your body clock. It’s the least rude awakening possible.

More details at Sleep Cycle.

Hastens Restore

Hastens Restore

If you’ve ever fallen asleep to whale noises, you have some experience with what the app from Swedish bedmaker Hastens does. That said, there’s a surprisingly clinical approach to the sounds behind the app, designed by mathematician and physician Dr. Jussi Eerikäinen and based off his work in sliding resonance frequency technology. Essentially, the app is a library of different tracks combining ambient noise and music aimed to wake you up, keep you focused, relax you and put you to sleep at the end of the day. Looking to get into a specific mood? There’s a track for that.

More details at Hastens.

Smoke Free

Sleep Cycle

A month after New Year and we’re all getting a little lax in sticking to our resolutions. If you decided to give up smoking – well done, by the way – then the cravings may be getting to you by now. If that’s the case, try Smoke Free. It goes without saying that it keeps track of the cigarettes you’ve smoked and the progress you’ve made, but it also monitors your cravings and, more importantly, how much you’ve saved by giving up. And by that we mean the pennies and the days. What greater incentive is there than that?

More details at Smoke Free App.

Streaks

Streaks

How many of us have tried to pick up new things over lockdown, only to let them fall by the wayside? Probably everyone reading this. Streaks is a virtual to-do-list into which you can plug all your personal goals for the day, week or month. It keeps track of your progress, congratulates you as you rack up success streaks and, perhaps most importantly, nags you if you’re falling behind until the tasks on your list become habit. If you’re struggling to hold yourself accountable for your own laziness, this app will. Don’t worry, technology doesn’t judge. Yet.

More details at Streaks App.

Pear Personal Fitness Coach

Pear Personal Fitness Coach

This hands-free and eyes-free approach to fitness is entirely audio-based, yet one of the most effective trainers on the market. Pear offers a wide library of different exercise routines at every level of fitness. Better yet, it adapts to your personal performance, intensifying whenever you find a particular level too easy. Pear pairs with pretty much every fitness wearable out there and you can share the metrics it gathers with other exercise apps, helping it to fit into your overall workout routine. It’s versatile, adaptive and you don’t need a screen to get the most out of it.

More details at Pears Sports.

About the author

Sam Kessler

Sam Kessler

Legend has it that Sam’s first word was ‘escapement’ and, while he might have started that legend himself, he’s been in the watch world long enough that it makes little difference. As the editor of Oracle Time, he’s our leading man for all things horological – even if he does love yellow dials to a worrying degree. Owns a Pogue; doesn’t own an Oyster Perpetual. Yet.

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