Summer 2019 Professional Fitness Equipment
Like all of the other trends in the world, the fitness industry is splitting to extremes. On one end, it’s all simple things that promote core strength and resistance training. On the other, it’s the technology that pushes the envelope.
Not to worry, Gym Insight is here to sort the trendy tools from yesterday’s devices. Fitness is, after all, a niche in the consumer marketplace. It branches into segments and subdivisions based on demographics and income levels. So, Let’s look at those trends or at least, point to authoritative sources about them.
Opposing Trends in Fitness Equipment
The trends in HIIT continue to boost the popularity of simple fitness equipment. Medicine balls, kettlebells go one way. The other is high tech connected equipment like Peloton, which sits on the remote training-personal connection boundary.
Innovations abound in gym equipment in 2019. No surprise really. However, there are some strange ones that seem to recreate the capabilities of the simple, guerilla approach to acquiring expensive devices. You can acquire rope climbing machines and tire flippers that sit in one place. This may work but it seems a bit too clever somehow. If you can procure a tractor tire, why buy an expensive machine that simulates it?
Peloton Promotes Alternative Travel Connections
On the other hand, rowing machines and such, that bring outdoor activities into your fitness club show real potential. The same for IoT-connected stationary bikes. There is real competition brewing with these, as companies like Peloton break the boundaries, if not the rules.
I’ve never thought that home fitness was a threat to the gym business. However, digitally connected equipment like Peloton is blurring the boundaries. Their way in is the digital connection.
Peloton locks onto the trend of people wanting the contact but being too busy. The company provides its equipment to consumers and hotel fitness centers. This influences the hotel choices of traveling users. It draws them away from the global fitness brands, at least in theory.
Information Bureaucracy Versus Nimble Number Crunching
The big box fitness brands are placed to compete more directly. They can connect equipment so that you could train in Boston one day, Cape Town the next, and Shenzhen the day after that. Corporate information systems could follow you and keep your training data up to date. Will they though?
That is what Peloton brings to at-home training. Fitness brands have to respond if they want to retain members targeted by this strategy. There are plenty of fitness programming alternatives for companies with deep pockets.
The whole industry has to respond to this kind of threat. With a little foresight, leaner small gym business can find advantages too. Doing so plays to your competitive advantage. It’s also to your advantage that your small gym business has the agility that corporate giants lack.
Small Gym Businesses Leveraging Technology
Innovation often spreads from the grassroots. This is where small gym business owners come in. The small fitness clubs of today could have the creative sparks that make them the giant companies (the unicorns) of tomorrow.
The intersection of technology and training gives us group training, interval training, and spinning classes that are still as popular as ever. Special populations such as aging and weight reduction.
In any case, I don’t see people working machines in VR goggles (the be-goggled?) doing workouts in solitary head spaces yet. But just look at all the people staring at smartphones and you can see it coming up fast. The potential from wearables and connected gym equipment should outweigh the threats. If Peloton can connect remotely so can you!
In a real sense, your people are the best machines you have to draw new members into the gym. Certified personal trainers are in demand and that trend is set to increase.
Wearables and Smart Machines
The so-called Internet of Things is becoming a natural part of all types of machines and equipment. Fitness is no different. In 2019 we see that there are many different options.
How quickly you roll out the latest round of IoT-driven gym equipment depends on your situation. Do you need new equipment? What technology do you require and what information will it gather? How will it fit your business model and fitness programming? How can you finance or lease it?
Whether there’s money to invest and consumer interest in high-tech equipment depends on the economy. If it slows, belts will tighten across the board. If it stays strong, the adventure will continue. There are signs that the economy will slow in the second half of this year, at least marginally.
Take What You Want and Leave the Rest
Low tech equipment like racks full of weights, resistance bands, and group bodyweight training are an excellent opportunity. If you’re a young trainer with the right personal trainer certifications, you don’t need high-priced machines just knowledge and passion for your programs. However, it’s smart to stay on top of the tech trends and apply what you can afford to gain the most advantage.
Fitness is always changing. However, the needs of your members are universally human. The Insight Suite of Gym Management Software is designed to manage people as well as accounts. Whether you take your technology low or high, remember to manage it with Insight.
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