From cardio and strength equipment to mobile fitness solutions and social media, technology is making an impact on the fitness world for both users and operators.
Some cardio equipment, such as this piece from the Technogym Unity Artis line, allows users to access the Internet and record their workouts. Photo courtesy of Technogym.
Technology is playing an ever-increasing role in the development of fitness equipment. We carry technology with us everywhere we go. These days, most people prefer to have all aspects of their lives consolidated into one single device. Emerging trends in fitness have and are continuing to play into this phenomenon.
Demand for personalization and easy access to entertainment and data on cardio equipment has evolved with similar technology that users find in other facets of their lives. From wearable fitness trackers to websites and apps, our fitness is becoming digital. We can track everything from our steps, sleep, heartbeat, food consumption and temperature through a website or downloaded apps. The data is easily accessible and works as a powerful tool to improve and enhance our well-being.
The ability to access all of this information allows users to better understand what they are doing and ultimately improve while taking some of the guesswork out of their exercise program. Fitness manufactures are taking notice, with an increase in technology-driven fitness equipment.
Traditionally, users have been able to get data about each training session from cardio equipment. Now, that information can be stored in a personal profile and pushed to websites. All information from a series of workout sessions can be combined for an overall picture of your members' fitness training.
Some of the newest cardio equipment is equipped with a built-in webcam so members can communicate with your trainers live, while they train, for instant feedback and motivation. Connection to the Internet opens a wide possibility of entertainment while training. The consoles on cardio equipment have gone from a simple LED screen to a tablet-like digital display with swipe gesturing that controls and connects the machine while entertaining and motivating the user.
The use of this technology in strength equipment is not as common, but it is not completely missing. Selectorized equipment can be configured to a personal profile so it knows how many reps and sets your members have been prescribed to perform, their personal seat setting and even the pace recommended for each movement. Functional training equipment is now featuring QR codes that link to online instruction and training programs.
With all the human power and effort that your members put into their workouts, it's about time we harness that energy to both power the machines and return energy to the grid. The newest generation of fitness equipment can do just that—put your members' efforts to work for your facility and reduce, renew and recycle power.
One of the most challenging parts of an exercise routine for your members is maintaining that routine as their schedule and locations change. With the introduction of technology and the advent of Internet-enabled fitness equipment, your members can now take their workouts with them. All of their data is aggregated into one place regardless of their location so members can keep their momentum going whether they are at home, at your club or on vacation.
It is a social world, and finding help and motivation by sharing fitness and wellness stories through social media is becoming increasingly popular. Many devices, apps, websites and equipment allow users to connect directly to social media to tell their story. They also can create a closed network of friends through devices and apps to motivate and support their efforts.
So what does this all mean for an operator? Operators can benefit from this new technology in many ways. Having your members connect with your trainers via social media and technology can keep your members engaged, motivated and advocating for your facility. Technology can help cultivate a community feeling. You can create challenges for friendly rivalries and celebrate your members' success. Operators can keep the equipment maintained by using asset management software that provides diagnostics in real time through an Internet connection.
From cardio and strength equipment to green energy, mobile fitness solutions and social media, technology is making an impact on the fitness world for both users and operators. Investing and embracing technology can only improve your business as well as your users' experience. The industry is moving fast, and smart operators will find ways to incorporate technology into their cardio and strength offerings wherever possible.
Content sponsored by Technogym.
Founded in 1983, Technogym is the world's leading international supplier of products, services and solutions in the wellness and fitness fields. With more than 2,200 employees and 14 branches in Europe, North America, South America, Asia, the Middle East and Australia, Technogym exports 90 percent of its production to 100 countries. More than 65,000 wellness centers and 100,000 private homes worldwide are equipped with Technogym. Technogym was the official supplier for the last five Olympic Games: Sydney 2000, Athens 2004, Turin 2006, Beijing 2008 and London 2012.