DIY Robot Traps You In Until You've Finished Your Push-Ups

If you were in need of medieval torture-style shackles to motivate your workout, you're in luck.
Chris Young

Had to cancel your gym membership due to Covid-19 and struggling to muster the motivation for home workouts? 

This DIY robot will literally lock you in until you've pulled off the required push-ups to stop you from giving up and turning your TV on halfway through your workout.

YouTube user "I Made This", who's clearly been struggling with push-up motivation demonstrated his shackle robot in a video (via BoingBoing).


Automating workout motivation

The robot has users place their ankles inside cut-outs before the device clamps shut. Once trapped in, the user tells the computer controlling the robot how many push-ups they want to do.

As Gizmodo reports, a camera and machine learning then seemingly tracks how many push-ups the user is carrying out — I Made This didn't go into great detail on the inner workings of his device.

"This robot makes your life harder," the video description explains. "This is the pushup robot," he says in the video. "It looks like crap, but it works like crap."

A not-so-smart smart device?

There is definitely something very questionable about this design. Firstly, if one lacks the motivation to do push-ups to the point where they need to literally trap themselves into a medieval torture clamp-like device, maybe they should take a look in the mirror.

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Secondly, the creator says that after you input the number of pushups you would like to carry out, you should "pray the computer doesn't crash." There's no description of a failsafe exit mechanism whatsoever, so what happens if you get mistakenly locked in indefinitely? I guess you can carry out a hell of a lot of push-ups.

The whole thing strikes us as a situation where you simply shouldn't need to use a smart lock mechanism, which could potentially go faulty and lock you in. Another recent example is this smart chastity belt that hackers might have manipulated with disastrous consequences.

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