The Health Tech Evolution

I’ve never enjoyed exercising. There. I said it. One of the reasons why: I was bored. I wasn’t engaged enough and even with a fitness buddy it can be a chore. It wasn’t until I was in my early 30s that I started enjoying exercise again – and why, you might ask? Technology.

As an IT consultant, I’ve said countless times that the development of IoT (Internet of Things) devices was inevitable. Slowly we’ve seen this become a reality from the smartwatch with fitness settings to the peloton bike, where you can take virtual classes with an instructor and compete against other peloton users. We saw it with treadmills too. When you hit the gym, you’ll see rows of treadmills all pointed at TVs, or you can watch TV while you jog or run on your treadmill. With IoT and apps expanded, you can now watch Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon, or check your social media feed.

The Wall Street Journal recently unveiled several fitness machines, including the Woodway 4Front, Life Fitness Platinum Club Series, Apple Watch, Peloton Tread, and Nordic Track X22i Incline Trainer, all of which incorporate IoT technology to help users get the most out of their workouts to be able to use .

While the other part of my aging GenX self still retains much of the old ways of doing things, I can’t help but enjoy the emergence of IoT fitness devices. The technical side of me enjoys the fact that I can run from my treadmill my entire work day.

Even so, there’s another part of me that just likes to get on my bike in the spring, the same bike I’ve owned for almost 30 years, and ride around my neighborhood – just me, my thoughts, and the open road. It’s that kind of connection that I enjoy that I would never turn away. However, I have to say that having a treadmill in your house and not going to the gym in the freezing cold in the dead of winter is beneficial!

Over time, we will see more devices with IoT capability. There are already several fitness machines with Internet interfaces. I’ve said countless times that VR (Virtual Reality) or AR (Augmented Reality) take control over time and the prices for the interfaces keep falling. With VR or AR, we can take part in several courses that enable a full-body experience – that’s why we get full-body training.

There are already several new games and interactive internet series promoting this new technology and pushing the next frontier in the fitness industry. But as this may seem like a wonderful advancement in terms of fitness and technology, there is a downside. Just check out a recent episode of Black Mirror to see if this can be useful or self-destructive and addicting. We will see.

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