The restrictions on gyms have been a game changer for this market and platforms such as Peloton, which saw a pandemic-induced first-quarter sales surge of 232 percent at the start of 2020. Hardware competitors such as NordicTrak, Echelon and Bowflex have also had great success during this boom.
Other big sports equipment brands also explored ways to offer more personal training experiences. One of these is Technogym with the launch of Technogym Live, which is compatible with the company’s new MYRUN treadmill and static bike options.
With an estimated 35 million people using its products every day, the brand recognized the need to adapt if it was to remain a market leader. Livehealthy caught up with Nerio Alessandri, Technogym founder and president to find out how the brand is making changes to suit new at-home trends, while remaining faithful to their loyal gym and wellness partners…
What’s new at TechnoGym?
We have recently launched a full range of products equipped with the Technogym Live interface that allows our clients to choose their personalized training experience from extensive on-demand training content, including trainer-led sessions, athletic training routines, outdoor virtual training and endless entertainment options to help them reach their objectives consistently.
Is this the first on-demand training?
The on-demand training experience is the big news of 2021. Thanks to Technogym Live we have integrated specific on-demand content on all our equipment lines, both for fitness clubs and for home fitness. As far as consumer products are concerned, we have launched this training option on MYRUN and TECHNOGYM BIKE this year.
What is MYRUN?
Our MYRUN is the new compact and silent home treadmill that connects to your tablet and allows you to choose your favourite workout from the comprehensive library of on-demand content.
It offers engaging one-to-one guided sessions and training routines for athletic performance as well as tailor-made workouts and virtual paths set in natural surroundings or in your favourite city. The aim is to deliver the same training experience at home as you would experience in a professional gym.
How is MYRUN different?
MYRUN’s running surface offers the perfect mix of dumping and rebound. It adapts to the way you run and absorbs impact efficiently. Furthermore, MYRUN has a variable incline up to 12 percent and a speed of 20 km/h and tracks your biometric data – heart rate, cadence and stride length – to allow you to find the optimal training intensity and to keep monitoring your performance.
MYRUN also offers CPR (Constant Pulse Rate) workouts: the treadmill automatically sets speed/inclination to maintain a certain heart rate (measured through HR Bluetooth belts or Apple Watch). It has also been designed to reduce environmental impact. For example, our research and development team has created a “wake-up sensor” feature that allows MYRUN to turn off automatically when the runner is not on the equipment.
What’s on Technogym Live?
By simply placing a tablet on the MYRUN console, users can choose a favourite trainer from the extensive library of on-demand content. For instance, those looking for a fun and engaging trainer who guides and motivates them for the entire duration of their workout can opt for Technogym Sessions or they can select Technogym Routines, which offers different exercises and movements at varying intensity levels.
Who is your target audience?
MYRUN is very versatile, designed to meet the needs of the whole family and to offer customised running or walking programs suitable for users of all levels, from beginners to fitness lovers to sports enthusiasts. Thanks to its compact dimensions, it is the perfect choice for those with limited space.
How has the pandemic impacted sales?
We have experienced a real boom in home fitness in all markets, the Middle East included. According to our last public figures, in 2020, Technogym’s home fitness sector grew by more than 70 percent.
I don’t believe that home fitness will be an alternative to fitness clubs; people in the future will train in both, just as they use both home delivery food but also go to restaurants. Sometimes, they will want the convenience of training at home but they will go to fitness clubs to socialize, to use a greater variety of equipment and programs and to get professional advice.
What’s the future of fitness?
We’re positive about the future of the wellness industry and I believe that as well as the growth of home fitness, fitness clubs will benefit too, since more and more people will combine the convenience of home training with the social aspects and services offered by clubs.
How is Technogym evolving?
Our strategy is based on a connected ecosystem made of smart equipment, apps and content in order to connect people to their personal training experience anytime, anywhere. Within this ecosystem we will keep investing in the future to add new training experience content and new services including the Technogym app which will be launched in the first semester of 2021.
The new app will offer people an unprecedented training experience, variety and give operators the opportunity to benefit from Technogym’s huge community and provide innovative services to their members.
Devinder Bains is journalist of 20 years, working as a writer and editor on some of the biggest national magazines, newspapers and online publications in the UK and the Middle East. She specialises in women’s empowerment, fashion, race, culture and travel, and as a qualified personal trainer and nutrition coach, she is an expert in health and fitness. She splits her time between freelance writing and running Fit Squad DXB – Dubai’s largest personal training and wellness company.