Advances in technology have changed many areas of our lives for the better. It enables us to connect with (and keep in contact with) people from all over the world, and pretty much all of the information we’ll ever need is available at the touch of a few buttons, from how to repair a hole in a dress, to how to get fit and healthy. In fact, advances in gym technology has had a substantial impact on how people now approach fitness, which is beneficial for both gymgoers and gym owners alike.
From better tracking your fitness progress to attracting new members to your gym, here are just some of the ways that gym technology has advanced over the years…
Finding the motivation to go to the gym can be tricky on your own, which is why it’s vital to encourage your gym members to engage with each other not just in classes, but also outside of them. If members form friendships and feel like they’re part of a community, they’ll be more likely to attend sessions to see and support their friends and discuss their own fitness goals and progress.
Additionally, with apps like Strava, MapMyRun, and other fitness trackers letting you record your runs and cycling sessions and share them (either directly through these apps or their profiles on other social media platforms), your members can also help each other push themselves further with some healthy competition.
One of the ways that this has been made possible is by setting up groups for members to join through Facebook and other social media platforms. This gives them one centralised place to arrange exercise sessions and classes, as well as share their latest achievements. Additionally, specialist gym technology (such as Ashbourne’s YourApp+ club software) also enables members to message your fitness trainers and other members, which makes it quicker and easier for them to arrange meetings outside of classes and share updates on their fitness progress from the same app that they make class bookings.
Adam Samuel, Co-founder of PUML, says: “As a Strava user, being part a virtual cycling club drives a strong sense of belonging and community, even if members are dotted around the world and don’t ride together. Most of us like looking at stats, and benchmarking yourself against other riders can provide a sense of achievement.”
Damian, the Co-Founder of The Running Movement, adds: “Some of us have met other runners who we now call great friends, through Strava. It’s the Facebook for runners to see what their friends are doing. Added to that, you can follow a lot of Pro athletes and see what they’re doing. Check out how slow some of them run at times – rather than how fast they’re going…”
With ‘time’ becoming more and more valued by busy millennials and Generation Xers (individuals that were born between the early 1960s and early 2000s), one of the biggest advantages of gym technology is that you no longer have to visit or phone up your local gym to book onto a fitness class. Instead, you should be giving your members the option to book online through your website or your own gym app, such as the YourApp+ customer app from Ashbourne.
Not only does this give members the option to book classes at any time of the day or night, but it saves them time by enabling them to search for classes, see where and when they’re being held, check how many spaces are available, and complete their booking all in one place, and in a matter of a few clicks. It also keeps a record of your bookings, and if needed, cancelling classes is also made just as easy.
How are people meant to stay motivated to achieve their health and fitness goals if they can’t measure their progress and see just how close they are to reaching their goals? Fortunately, thanks to on-going innovations in exercise machinery and wearable fitness technology (such as ‘smartwatches’ and other fitness activity trackers), your members can track a variety of metrics while they exercise. These range from your heart rate and the amount of calories you’ve burnt in each workout, to altitude and distance travelled. Some even have built in maps to keep you on track with your walk, run, and cycling routes!
Gym technology has also gone one step further in terms of tracking your body mass and competition, with weighing machines doing so much more than recording your weight and height to calculate your BMI. The Boditrax Precision Body Composition machine, for example, will analyse the composition of your body (including the muscle mass and body fat percentage for different parts of your body), which will help your gym trainers and members work together to set the right goals.
To help your members get the most out of their workout with gym technology, make sure to invest in newer fitness machines (and upgrade these models as when as it’s needed). Michaela adds that Bodhi and Rine “use a technology called Spivi which connects the Bluetooth monitors located on each exercise bike with a cloud based solution. The data captured from each bike is then displayed on a screen inside the cycle studio, showing each rider’s performance compared to each other.”
For classes and workouts that don’t require the use of electronic machines, you should also consider providing wearable fitness activity trackers for your members to borrow whilst on your premises. As diet plays a big part in losing weight, your personal trainers should also be encouraging your members to track what they eat using calorie counting apps, such as MyFitnessPal. As well as letting you record the calories in your meals, it calculates your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) to let you know how many calories you need to ear or lose or gain weight.
Thanks to the world gradually moving online, there are various ways you can use digital marketing to promote your gym’s fitness classes, facilities, products, services, and latest offers. This includes placing paid ads on Google, sending out email communications (such as weekly and monthly newsletters, and targeted email marketing campaigns), as well as posting adverts and organic posts through Facebook, Instagram, and other social media platforms.
If you use gym management software, such as Ashbourne’s Club Software, you can also advertise your latest offers and promotions by sending targeted emails and text messages to your gym members list. With our Connect+ CRM module, you can see past communications with your members to ensure your communications are tailored to each individual member.
With Ashbourne’s Club Software, we take care of your gym’s payment collection and debt recovery, as well as enable you to manage your staff and facility schedules, communicate with your members through email and text messages, track product sales through EPOS Till Software, and offer an online booking system for your fitness classes.
To find out more about how we can help your gym or fitness club, contact us for more information.
At McCaulay’s Health Clubs and Gyms we utilise the full suite of Ashbourne services, including the latest Membership Validation Till System, which really is helping to boost our secondary spend. Their core service of payment collection is utterly reliable and professional.
My members can sign up online through the fully branded page that Ashbourne provide. If any of my members have a payment query they deal with Ashbourne direct, allowing me to concentrate on running my club.
I have used Ashbourne for my payment collection for 10 years now. The software they have provided keeps improving and they work with the clubs to make it better. It’s easy to use and packed full of features.