Even before the pandemic, home gym technology was gaining popularity in the US. In 2019 and early 2020, Peloton bikes were all the rage, and millions of people joined a growing community of smartwatch enthusiasts. Then, thanks to COVID-19, the global home fitness equipment market grew by an estimated 40% in a single year.
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Home gym equipment is hotter than ever, as many people are hesitant to return to the gym to share the same air and machines. They want their own space where they can breathe easier and break a sweat without wearing a mask. It seems the tech world has tapped into this growing demand because the next generation of home gym equipment is looking to provide all that and more.
Here are a few things to look forward to as technology progresses and the world transitions to working out at home.
Like smart thermostats, watches, lights, speakers, and workout equipment become more prevalent; you’ll likely see more potential for smart-home integration in emerging gym technologies. In fact, some of this integration is already taking place.
For instance, multiroom AV solutions that can pair with your smart-home automation system allow users to pump their favorite sounds and visuals through their workout space. Better yet, they can control brightness, volume, and other features with an app on their smartphone.
In the future, you may see thermostats that automatically lower your home’s temperature when you’re in the middle of an intense workout. Meanwhile, indoor cyclists, rowers, and even boxers may benefit from lights and music that sync with their heartbeat or whatever banger they have blasting through their speakers.
Work and Fitness Combos
With so many people working from home, it only makes sense that some would want to integrate fitness into their workday. Luckily, there are dozens of machines that can help them do just that. Send email updates to your team and burn calories simultaneously with a desk bike or foldable treadmill. You can even get your cardio in by pedaling away at an under-desk elliptical.
These devices may seem low-tech at first since they’re rather small and simple-looking. However, some models feature an LCD monitor or connect with your smartwatch to track statistics like your pace and speed. As more people transition to remote work permanently, you’ll likely see additional similar technologies hit the home gym market shortly.
Even as travel bans lift, people will continue to buy equipment that offers completely immersive experiences without leaving the comfort of home. Machines like the Hydrow Pro, Tonal Smart Home Gym, and The Mirror already provide virtual-reality adventures. However, you’ll likely see more video game-esque workout technologies in the future.
For example, Kickstarter project 360VRFit can turn any piece of equipment into a ride through Central Park or a jog along the beach — without the expensive subscription fees. Other technologies like the VZfit Explorer program immerse you in a 360-degree landscape by stitching together images from Google Street View. Innovators are still working out the kinks, but a higher-quality, streamlined experience is just around the corner as the demand for virtual travel opportunities grows.
Of course, you don’t need to invest in expensive technology to simulate reality. Advanced speed bags offer additional features beyond what you’d typically expect, simulating a fighter more accurately than typical bags.
Niche Workout Tech
Advancements in workout technology also provide more access to niche workouts like boxing, bokwa and even aerial fitness. Typically, you’d have to go to a studio and attend these classes in person to get the full experience.
Now, however, you can learn pole, pound, kickboxing and more right in your own living room. Take classes with a growing pool of virtual instructors who will teach you basic and more advanced moves.
After more than a year of quarantines, travel bans and social distancing, people are more than ready to embrace the social side of working out again. However, they won’t be connecting at the gym or studio but, rather, online. Many fitness buffs and beginners are already joining virtual classes and making new friends through their smartphone and computer screens.
Exercise equipment companies are catching on and creating a more cohesive online space where users can connect and break a sweat together. Competitive features also allow people to challenge themselves and others to battles of speed, agility and accuracy. In the future, you’ll likely see a larger online community, more one-on-one engagement and competitive AI integration.
Most people want their workouts to make them stronger, faster and leaner. However, it’s often difficult to track your progress if you like to mix up your routine. Luckily, wearables and smart equipment make it easier than ever to improve your form and make real progress.
Take the Tempo Studio, for example. This high-end machine uses AI technology and 3D motion sensors to track your movements and offer personalized feedback during and after your workout. Meanwhile, yoga enthusiasts have created leggings that use vibrations to gently correct your posture so you can adjust your alignment in real-time.
These and future technologies will rely on Bluetooth, visual and audio cues, biometrics, and other high-tech innovations to help you tune into your body. They let you focus on quality movement and avoid injury.
Fitness at Your Fingertips
As people everywhere transition to online fitness spaces, accessibility will remain the most exciting advancement in-home gym technology. Wearables, machines and other smart devices are integrating new features and undergoing upgrades so more people can enjoy a personalized experience right at their fingertips. Better yet, they’ll be able to take their workouts anywhere, which will allow them to stick to their routine and, ultimately, accomplish their most ambitious goals.
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Last Updated on May 19, 2021.