The new epidemic has already changed people's living habits. Among them, home fitness has set off a wave, and some consumers have purchased related equipment for this purpose. Even if the epidemic is over, they may not return to the gym again. Under this trend, how can companies such as Lululemon and Nike use technology and big data to create a better "home fitness" experience? The epidemic has sparked a wave of home fitness, driving the sales of all kinds of home fitness equipment soaring, such as kettlebells, dumbbells, etc. all sold out of stock. Many start-ups and sports brands have also sensed business opportunities, launched various home fitness equipment, and used high-tech, big data and other technologies to create user-friendly "home gyms".
With the advent of the 5G era and the upgrading of Internet of Things (IoT) technology, sports and fitness are becoming more and more intelligent. According to the research of the market research agency Grand View Research, the global smart fitness market was about 6 billion US dollars in 2006, and by 2025, it is estimated to reach nearly 30 billion US dollars.
The ultimate goal of health, fitness and body sculpting, so that people or office workers can manage their goals effectively through more and more wearable devices and tools even if they lack motivation or time.
In addition, technologies such as IoT, AR/VR, and M2M (Machine-to-Machine) communication have facilitated the adoption of smart health devices, including smart sports devices such as smart watches with sensors, wristbands, clothing, shoes, glasses, sports equipment, sports recorder (such as: record exercise track, exercise log and various body data, etc.). IoT devices are changing the fitness industry in three ways:
Assist in Personalized Movement
This is the most well-known feature of IoT data capture in the sports venues and overall health industries. Based on the motion data detected from wearable devices, sensors and smart training equipment, and sent to smart devices or mobile apps for analysis, training programs can be customized to suit individual needs.
Additionally, an individual's fitness progress can be easily tracked using such devices, which measure an individual's vital signs (i.e. heart rate), body temperature, calories burned, etc. This data can be used to build fitness guidelines to help optimize your efforts and achieve desired goals, conduct health assessments, and even share with others to show off fitness achievements.
Provide Immersive Training
Including VR technology, especially headsets, can be used for more than just entertainment purposes. When training, virtual reality can provide users with an immersive experience, giving users the opportunity to train in the appropriate environment they are in. Furthermore, even if everyone cannot use the same space, it is still possible to train with others through VR.
Simplify Equipment Maintenance
To ensure user satisfaction, stadium operators must properly maintain machinery and equipment, but it used to be difficult to determine which machines were worn out due to uncertainty about which equipment was used the most. In the future, if the Internet of Things system is used, all usage information can be obtained at any time, and the schedule of maintenance can be estimated, making the work process much simpler.
Wall-Mounted Weight-Bearing Equipment Used by NBA Players Can Also Be Retrained at Home
American fitness startup Tonal has launched a "home weight training" device that allows you to train in the gym as you normally would with just one wall. The company's main product is a huge LED screen mounted on the wall. Different from traditional dumbbell and barbell training, Tonal's LED screen has "smart weight-bearing arms", which uses an electromagnetic resistance engine controlled by an algorithm to compare the weight of the bar. It is "digital weight", not physical weight.
Tonal noted that more than half of NBA teams used the company's products during the NBA's playoffs at Disney's "Bubble Circle" in Orlando last year, and Stephen Curry invested in it.
Recently, Tonal will also be stationed in Nordstorm, a veteran department store, and set up 40 chain counters, making it a strong entry into the public eye.
Lululemon Acquires Mirror Company, Uses Technology to Stick to Consumers
Last year, popular sportswear brand Lululemon launched its first merger and acquisition, spending $500 million to acquire Mirror, a hardware technology startup, which is also a business opportunity in the home fitness trend.
"Bloomberg" analyzed that Lululemon's big acquisition is to use Mirror's technology to provide consumers with a more immersive fitness experience. Through this mirror, consumers can not only play music, but also display various fitness data when exercising at home, subscribe to fitness courses through the mirror, and exercise with the coach in the mirror. Such personalized and highly interactive fitness methods are an important part of home fitness, thus sticking to users.
In fact, Lululemon's products are all developed through scientific experiments, and it is not an exaggeration to say that it is a "technology company" at all.
According to Fast Company reports, Lululemon has a laboratory "WhiteSpace" located in the basement of the company's headquarters in Vancouver, Canada. The lab has a sensory immersion zone, where technicians hook up subjects to measure brain activity, while neuroscientists change the room's temperature, humidity and sound. On the other side, computer scientists read the subjects' tracking 3D images on the computer to observe the interaction between the subjects' movements and their clothes.
Through a large amount of data monitoring, Lululemon has a better understanding of users' exercise habits, and recommends products according to consumers' habits. For example: The brand will design bras for high-impact sports like running, and then offer sports bras with greater stability for women with a fuller bust.
Tom Waller, the head of the lab and Lululemon's senior vice president, said in an interview with the media: "Lululemon built this lab to understand how users move and how they feel when they exercise."
Create Internet Celebrities, AI Coaches, and Launch Highly Personalized Fitness Programs
Under this wave of home fitness, Peloton, a new fitness startup, sells its main products, flywheels, treadmills, and online courses, and makes fitness trainers into "internet celebrities", shooting sports videos with heart, and successfully creating a fan economy.
In the fitness classroom of Peloton New York, there are professional cameras, lighting and sound equipment to record videos of various fitness types and durations. Students can follow the coach at home to live or record the exercise. Under the gorgeous sound and light effects in the video, the experience is no less than a show, attracting a large number of users. The Motley Fool pointed out that Peloton's fitness class subscriptions grew 134% in the last quarter compared to the same period, and the total number of registered members of the app reached 4.4 million.
Well-known sports brand Nike is not too worried about fitness at home. Nike already has two apps, Nike Training Club (NTC) for personalized fitness and Nike Running Club (NRC) for jogging practice records, which can design personal fitness plans for users, and can also book real trainers. Social media, offering advice on exercise and nutrition, creating an immersive brand experience that integrates into people's lives.
And technology giant Apple also announced the launch of the "Apple Fitness+" health value-added plan at its press conference in September 2020. As long as you open the fitness app, you can have 10 types including running, yoga, rowing, muscle strength, dance, etc. During the course, its AI will also track the user's various data synchronously, and it is recommended to adjust the exercise intensity, which is completely an AI coach.
This period of time when you can't go out as you want has made "fitness" quickly online and at home. Even if the epidemic is over in the future, the fitness culture may not be the same as before. However, the demand for fitness will not disappear. Without offline interaction, the use of technology to create a good experience will be the fitness scene just around the corner.