By Kira Razavian
Keeping up with evolving technology is every modern business’ struggle, and gyms are no exception. Clients will be expecting more and more of your gym as their own personal tech grows and changes.
This list gives you a preview of the fitness technology to look out for this year. Invest only in what makes sense for your business, but always know what’s out there!
Wearable technology is popular for personal use but can also be used at gyms. Most wearable gym tech monitors heart rate and other vitals to give the wearer deeper insights into their performance. There are a few different types.
While many gym-goers have their own, it may be wise to have a few you can lend to members. Just make sure you have a good system for checking them in and out, so they don’t get lost.
These work similarly to wrist monitors except they wrap around the wearer’s chest. Heart rate monitors on a chest strap are commonly used in group classes with heavy cardio so participants can see their progress against their target heart rate.
For those who don’t want something around their wrist or chest, new fitness-tracking rings offer a smaller alternative. They go around a client’s finger and monitor their heart rate from there.
Have you ever wondered if you’re doing an exercise correctly? Of course you have. Smart gym equipment can answer that question for you with real-time feedback and built-in fitness tracking.
Many smart equipment companies also offer class subscriptions. Live and recorded classes can stream right to the device, where participants can monitor their progress on the same screen. Some products also gamify workouts, making the fitness journey more fun (and a little addictive).
New machines can automatically adjust resistance, track motion, show classes on a mirrored screen, and more. Consumers are impressed.
However, these machines are also very expensive for the average home-gym builder. Adding equipment like Tonal to your facility can bring in curious clients who want to give it a try.
Treadmills, rowing machines, and stationary bikes are also getting smart. Companies like Peloton are leading the way, and customers love the ease and benefits of smart cardio. They can follow along with instructors and simultaneously monitor their heart rate.
Another example is the newest model of the Peloton stationary bike. It automatically adjusts resistance based on the class leader’s instructions. Expect to see more equipment on the market that does the easy work for you, so fitness can be the only manual task.
Your gym likely has a normal scale that simply tells you a person’s weight. But newer, smarter scales are available to help your customers on their fitness journey.
Smart scales can connect to apps on members’ phones, break down body composition details, and calculate body mass index (BMI). Some scales can also connect to other fitness-related apps so all of one’s fitness data can be viewed in one place.
The best part? Many of these scales are under £100. Adding a few to your facility’s locker rooms is attainable and beneficial.
Paper sign-in sheets? Please. It’s 2022!
Gym management software is no longer a nice-to-have. Gym goers expect you to have it. They want their membership easily managed and a smooth, high-tech customer experience.
That’s where software like EZFacility comes in. Extensive features for gym owners and members alike make management easy.
Gym software enables your staff to schedule in one place and avoid overlaps. Members can more easily see the lineup of classes and availability of personal trainers, private rooms, etc. Users can also search the schedule to find exactly what they’re looking for.
The hardest part of being a member at a gym should be the actual workouts, not managing a membership. The right software can give power to members so they can see and edit the details of their membership.
Members can also sign up for leagues, tournaments, and individual trainings on their own. This makes it fast for them and reduces the time your staff has to spend coordinating member activities.
Gym staff will also be able to automate fee collection, make different types of memberships, and manage valuable client relationships. Billing and payments are all handled in the same place.
In an ideal gym world, products for sale don’t need to be in a separate system from memberships and other client info. EZFacility makes that ideal possible since it can act as a POS.
Member stats and financial records can be visualised with the right gym software. You can learn more about your clientele and get ideas for business improvements.
Members aren’t the only people gyms need to manage. EZFacility gym management software makes managing staff and personal trainers much easier than chasing around emails and phone calls.
In this age, your gym is not only competing with other local gyms but also competing with online services that offer live and on-demand classes at members’ fingertips. It’s easy to pull up whatever class they want, and they don’t have to leave the comfort of their homes.
So how do you reel in those customers who are tempted by the at-home wellness and fitness tech experience? Add your own virtual experiences to your gym’s repertoire.
Your gym’s website can do more than offer basic info and schedules. Record some classes and add them to a video library just for members.
You can host this on password-protected parts of your website or a private YouTube channel if you want to restrict it to members only. However, a free YouTube channel may also be a great way to bring in new clients!
You can also try live streaming some of your popular classes. Do this on your website or start simple and stream it free on your social media pages.
You may be surprised by the response you get. Just make sure to promote the stream so people know when it starts and how to tune in. You could also partner with other gyms or influencers to do joint streams.
Ready to get really futuristic with your fit tech? Virtual reality is gaining popularity in the gaming world, but it’s coming for the fitness industry, too.
Get ready to see more fitness programs for VR headsets. Your members may appreciate the immersive experience.
Recovery is essential for continued fitness success and growth. It completes the fitness regimen and gets gym members ready for their next round.
One of the most popular recovery tech companies is Therabody, which manufactures tools such as massage guns, vibrating rollers, compression systems, and more. These devices are well-known in the fitness community and may have a place at your facility.
Hand-held massage devices can help knead the soreness and stiffness out of post-workout muscles. Therabody’s popular Theragun products come with multiple attachments and massage types.
Whatever brand you go with, offering massage guns to gym members can remind them that you care about their whole fitness process, not just the workout.
Muscle-simulating electrical pulses can aid recovery and condition muscles. These devices stick nodes onto the skin and can connect to apps that control intensity.
The majority of People in the UK – a whopping 92 percent – own smartphones. Not incorporating that into your gym programs would be a missed opportunity.
Fortunately, many of these apps are cheap or free. We’ve listed a few different types below.
Subscription workout class services often have their own apps. Users can log in and have an organised video library ready to go.
Your gym could incorporate one of these apps into memberships. Or create an app with your own video library to really stand out to your members.
Fitness enthusiasts can use apps to track all their workout stats now. From mapping an outdoor run to recording calories burned during a HIIT session, gym-goers want a way to see all their stats in one place.
Apps such as MyFitnessPal help users keep track of their meals, calories, and macros. Adding these types of applications to your gym’s programs can up your training game.
The wide variety of fitness technology available on the market today can be overwhelming. Here are three steps to keep you focused as you add some of this new tech to your facilities and
Send out a survey to your current members to determine their interest in new tech. It’s always better to hear from your customers rather than take a guess and make the wrong investment.
It’s tempting to overhaul everything at once. While large-scale tech updates are impressive, they’re also expensive.
Make investments in new technology little by little. Replace a few machines at a time or add online classes one type at a time.
Going slowly will also give your gym members time to adjust. It can be intimidating if everything changes overnight.
Your fitness facility’s future success depends on keeping up with consumer demands, and that includes having the latest technology. Keep up with industry news and make it a goal to invest in a few updates every quarter.
Your gym doesn’t need to have all the latest devices to be unique – your community, staff, and leadership give your gym the heart customers want. But offering advanced devices never hurts!
As you learn about what your customers want, make sure you’re still taking a step back to look at the full picture. Your job is to provide a place where fitness thrives, not just a place where a bunch of fitness technology sits.
How is your facility treating the whole individual and supporting their goals? All of your gym and fitness tech should revolve around that question first.