Future of Connected Health + Fitness
In today’s world consumers are increasingly looking for (and expecting) ways in which technology can enhance their health and fitness efforts, as well as their overall wellbeing. Because of this, it is no surprise that the health and fitness industry is one of the fastest innovating industries. We took a closer look at what the future of fitness will look like and how technology will play a role in this transformation.
Health and fitness on the go
We are currently experiencing an an overflow of health and fitness related mobile apps. Nowadays gyms have their own apps with a class booking system and personal trainers have created their own fitness and clean eating apps. Sportswear brands such as Nike and Adidas have fitness focussed apps on offer too. The rise of the pivotal role that mobile plays in the way we keep fit and healthy is plane to see, centred around the fact consumers want to be able to access these services and data anywhere and anytime to inform every day decisions from food selection to taking the stairs instead of the escalator to achieve their daily total steps goal.
Wearable tech represents another innovation for consumers on the go. Fitbits and Apple watches provide an easy way to track the individuals activity and health, such as heart rate. In the future, smart clothing has been predicted to complement or even take over smart watches, as the industry will move away from just performance tracking to tracking overall wellbeing and even injury prevention. For example EVA - is a bio-sensor sports bra able to detect signs of breast cancer (currently in testing stage). Other innovations in wearable tech include chemical releasing clothing by Under Armour and self charging smart shoes by Adidas. To learn more about these innovations check out this list of recent exciting fitness patents created by Pure Gym.
DNA testing provides notable opportunities for creating personalised health and fitness regimes based on genetic insights. While it may sound futuristic, many brands are already competing in this space. For example Muhdo offers personalised health, fitness and nutritional recommendations based on your DNA profile, acquired from a simple DNA swab test. Based on a genetic analysis, recommendations tailored specifically for your body, on for example how to lose fat, build muscle, improve endurance or even overall quality of life can be made.
For the health and fitness industry, the future looks more connected. Soon the data collected from all of your fitness apps, smart watch, gym equipment and DNA profiling, can be combined to create a comprehensive analysis of your wellbeing and fitness level, allowing for more personalised recommendations on how to further improve, such as what is the optimal number of reps or weights for you to build muscle most efficiently.
IoT and artificial intelligence also present notable opportunities. By gathering data more efficiently from multiple sources we could potentially enable real-time analysis. In practice this could mean a notification when you reach peak performance during your workout, projecting future health such as muscle mass growth, or getting warnings about dropping blood sugars, approaching dehydration or detected vitamin deficiency. Besides just assessing physical exercise, the scope of analysis could also be broadened to sleep, mood and mental health, creating a more immersive solution on overall well-being.
In the future, intelligent and connected technology has the potential to transform our understanding of how we exercise. Check out Intel’s video on what tomorrow’s digital health clubs will look like.