Getting Healthy with Alexa
From fitness trackers to online doctor’s visits, health and technology make for a powerful combination. But managing all that health information, or even keeping up with the latest recommendations, can be overwhelming. If only we all had a personal health assistant to keep us feeling our best. If you have Alexa, you can turn it into the next best thing. Check out the best health skills for Alexa.
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The 7-minute-workout combines several exercises you can do anywhere (no need for a gym!) into a complete body workout. Alexa tells you what exercise to do and keeps track of the time you should perform it. If you don’t know how to do an exercise, it can talk you through it, or you can look at the Alexa app for tips.
When your child has a bad cough or fever, it can be hard to decide when to go to the doctor or how much medicine to give. The KidsMD skill was developed by Boston Children's Hospital, and walks you through symptoms of illness, and whether they are serious enough to warrant a visit to the pediatrician. It also gives details about how much ibuprofen, acetaminophen or aspirin to give based on age and weight — handy, if you’ve lost the original packaging.
If you’re addicted to tracking your steps with your Fitbit, Alexa can tell you how close you are to your goal. You can also ask about yesterday’s data, or even find out if your tracker needs to be charged.
Stop, Breathe & Think
Plenty of research shows the health benefits of mediation, but it can be hard to find the time and focus to actually do it. This skill provides different guided meditations every day, varying in length. A calm voice talks you through deep breathing and muscle relaxation. It then provides a theme to mediate on, such as Body Scan and Change.
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My Pregnancy from BabyCenter
You're pregnant — congratulations! Now what? This skill helps you follow your baby's development inside the womb. Get weekly updates about changes to your body as well as your baby's. And hear tips to help you prepare for the big day.
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Managing chronic health conditions can feel like a full-time job; all the appointments and medications can be overwhelming. This skill makes it easier to keep track of when you'll see the doctor next. It will also track how much medication you need to take, and will log in the medication when you take it.The skill also helps keep an eye on vitals like blood pressure.
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Ambient Noise: Thunderstorm Sounds
If you find the sound of a thunderstorm soothing, you can hear one any time you want with Thunderstorm Sounds skill. You can tell it to loop if you want it to play all night. There are also skills for ocean sounds and rain sounds, if those are more calming for you.
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After your baby arrives, you'll want to track your baby's activities to make sure everything's going as expected. Alexa makes it easy with this skill: just tell it when your child eats, pees or poops. Or tell it the child’s current weight and height, among other things. All that info is tied to the Baby Stats site or app, so you can see trends over time.
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Having trouble deciding on an exercise? This skill gives suggestions for quick exercises, like planks, lunges and sit-ups. String together a few ideas and you'll have a decent workout.
You don't need to leave the house to do a Pilates class — or be near a computer screen. This skill, offered through A Lot of Pilates, talks you through a 10-20 minute mat class. You'll need an account with A Lot of Pilates.
Do you need to wear sunscreen today? This skill tells you the current UV index for your ZIP code, and recommends whether you should wear sunscreen and a hat.
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Getting healthy or fit is a matter of developing — and maintaining —good habits. The Healthy Habit skill will tell you a good habit each day.
Ask My Buddy
Have you fallen and can’t get up? Call out to Ask My Buddy, and it can connect you to someone in your personal alert network to come and help you. It’s not a substitute for 911, but it’s a good backup system.
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Mountain Top for Strava
This skill links to your Strava account, and can tell you your latest stats, friend updates, activities and more. It’s not an official Strava skill, but is handy for those who use the app.
Yoga For Beginner
If you’re just getting into yoga, Yoga for Beginner will help you learn seven poses, such as shavasan and tadasan, that improve strength, balance and flexibility. The skill talks you through each pose to help you do it correctly.
When you want to get fit but just don’t know what exercises to do, My Workouts can be your fitness coach. Set up a profile and fitness goals to get customized workouts or let it pick a workout for you. If you’re not sure how to do an exercise, it describes it in detail. The skill plays rocking tunes to motivate you, too.
5-Minute Plank Workout
That six-pack isn’t going create itself. Get a strong core by doing the 5-Minute Plank Workout. The skill times a variety of planks—full, elbow, raised leg and more—giving you time remaining every 10 seconds, and allowing 10 seconds of rest between each set.