Tracking, and encouraging, over one million kids

Creating standards for what it means to be green for small businesses creates a unique challenge.

Like a lot of state governments, Texas wanted to slow the childhood obesity epidemic. Mandating minimums for physical activity in public school P.E. classes seemed like a good idea.

But Jen Ohlson, founder of Interactive Health Technologies (IHT), identified a problem—and an opportunity. She realized that while the physical activity mandate was well intentioned, there was no way for schools to know whether their students were meeting it.

Even if teachers could watch every child all the time, how could they objectively tell which kids were “active enough?”

Develop a suite of game-changing software to enable students, teachers and parents to actually measure class time activity and effectiveness. Deployed in school districts in over 30 states, IHT has revolutionized K-12 Physical Education.
SaaS Product Development / Web App Development

An easy way to get kids moving

Jen knew that she had identified a need, and she was determined to find a way to meet it. She believed that technology could provide the answer. With nothing more than that belief and her determination, she came to us.

Working with Jen, we reached consensus early on that target heart rates were the ideal metric to measure child activity. Starting from that premise, we got to work.

The technology we built integrates a cloud-based database, proprietary software installed on school PCs, and kid-sized wireless heart rate monitors. Even though it’s pretty sophisticated on the back end, at Jen’s insistence, we made it very easy and fun to use on the front end, for both the kids and their teachers.

During P.E. class, teachers can see which kids need help and encouragement to reach their target heart rates. After class, the monitoring data is uploaded to the database, creating snapshots of each child’s fitness progress over time.

And it’s working. The school districts pilot-testing the system saw great results. Now more Texas schools have adopted it, and Jen is fielding inquiries from school districts across the country. From one small idea and a lot of hard work and ingenuity, the battle against childhood obesity has been joined.

Healthy dividends

By trusting that technology could bring a great idea to life, Jen took Interactive Health Technologies from a one-woman business to an emerging player in the fight against childhood obesity. The system we built is the linchpin of her business, promoting a social good in a viable model:

Cloud-based data collection delivers easy scalability as more schools sign on

Easy-to-use front-end software lowers a key barrier to school district adoption

Schools can now demonstrate accountability to parents and administrators for meeting physical activity requirements

Kids at-risk for obesity-related health issues can be identified earlier, when unhealthy behaviors are easier to change

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