The new role of virtual fitness
Get active from the comforts of home or on-the-go with workout technologies that’ll keep you motivated.
Wit all the hustle and bustle of everyday life, going to the gym could seem like mission impossible. However, with the evolution of virtual workouts,
getting in a sweat session couldn’t be more convenient. With an array of apps, workout equipment and other smart ways to tune in and shape up, tech-friendly workouts are becoming a new way to fitness. All that is required is time, space and a WIFI connection to get you moving.
SMART FITNESS EQUIPMENT
Studio-quality equipment is making its way into living rooms across the world with virtual access to fellow fitness enthusiasts. With built-in smart technology, accessing a plethora of interactive and on-demand classes allows for a workout environment that will meet your exercise preferences.
Companies like Peloton, which is leading the charge in the cybernetics experience, provide live studio cycling in the comfort of your home. With over 90 weekly classes ranging in duration, difficulty and mood, the rider can experience the thrill of being in an actual class led by high-energy instructors. If streaming a live class isn’t an option that day, Peloton offers an on-demand library of mood-specific rides.
Likewise, Mirror is an interactive gym that uses a full-length mirror to stream live and on-demand fitness classes. Complete with embedded speakers and camera, it offers a vast range of workouts. You follow along while watching the instructor and yourself in the interactive display. Choose from options such as cardio, strength, yoga, barre, Pilates and boxing.
PROS Smart workout equipment comes with the convenience of exercising on your time, your schedule. Real-time, interactive and on-demand workouts can help you to stay motivated with a community of fitness-focused individuals and elite instructors.
CONS Although owning a piece of fitness equipment is convenient, it
can come at a cost—financially and socially. Mirror costs $1,495, while Peloton Bike comes in at $2,950 for the basic package. However, this does not include the monthly subscription for classes. Also, working out at home could take away from the social aspect of a gym.
VIRTUAL AND DIGITAL PERSONAL TRAINING
The evolution of online fitness training has paved the way to working out whenever, wherever you want, right at your fingertips. Seeking the direction and knowledge of a fitness trainer comes in two interactive forms: virtually, with an actual personal trainer or digitized platform, via online app. Both can allow for a customizable program tailored to your individual goals. The support of real person to help achieve your fitness objectives can be a great option for those who are looking for accountability. A virtual digitalized program may be suitable if you are looking for flexibility.
Centr, an online digital health and fitness program curated by Chris Hemsworth, offers workouts with world-class trainers with specialties
in the areas of MMA, HIIT/HIRT, functional training, strength, foundation movement, yoga and Pilates. Workout options like “coached” or “self-guided” allow the trainee to select exercising with a single continuous video or follow individual exercises by video or images, respectively.
Jorge Blanco, MMA coach for Centr and sparring partner and coach of
UFC legend Georges St. Pierre, says “following a digital fitness program can be a great way to take control of your health and fitness goals. It will give you the tools you need to train anytime, anywhere—no excuses.” Simply download the Centr app or access it via the website, select the workout and unlock the power of the program.
PROS Whether digital or with a personal trainer online, a virtual fitness program provides the freedom to schedule your workouts according to your time and lifestyle.
CONS Human touch. The absence of a trainer there with you, front and center, may remove the in-person connection that can take you past your comfort zone and ensure proper exercise form.
Streaming workouts are all the craze for simplicity, convenience and minimal to zero cost. By cracking open your laptop, phone or tablet, you can access a world of workouts ranging from interval training and cardio to yoga and Pilates. Some exercise platforms offer a free trial, with the option for monthly subscription. While others like YouTube allow for free access; however, you may need to be patient with intermittent advertisements.
Alternatively, gym facilities such as GoodLife Fitness offer members the option to stream workouts from an in-house fitness studio. Simply attend when live classes are not scheduled, select a workout from the interactive display and tackle it on your own or with a friend.
PROS Browse on-demand workouts and find the perfect session to meet your goals, timetable and budget. Whether beginner or advanced,
you can find workouts that are accessible 24/7.
CONS Self-discipline is required, especially if streaming is your primary fitness outlet. Do your research, as not all streaming workouts are led by a certified instructor/trainer.
With so many virtual options to stay connected to the latest and greatest in health and fitness, sticking to your workout plans is manageable. From having a piece of smart equipment in your home to streaming workouts wherever your travels take you, technology is changing how can stay active and accomplish your fitness mission.
More Inspiration: Check out this interesting article on the newest fitness tech for 2020.
Author: Daniela DeFeo is a certified health coach, freelance writer, lifestyle model and extreme sports enthusiast. She aims to inspire healthful, positive change and writes articles on nutrition, health, fitness and lifestyle. She is a contributing writer for Optimyz.