Why It's Time for Fitness Facilities to Invest in Digital Technology

You’ve probably heard it by now.

  • The world’s biggest taxi service doesn’t own a car. (Uber)
  • The world’s largest bookseller has less than 20 physical book stores. (Amazon)
  • The world’s largest lodging provider doesn’t own real estate. (Airbnb)

In the new digital era, our assumptions about what is essential to a specific business or industry are moot. With that in mind, what do we think digital transformation will mean for the health and fitness industry? Before we can answer that question, we need to take a look at the health and fitness industry’s status quo.

We all know digital disruption is a risk. And we know that digital transformation is an essential component of future-proofing your company. But what we’re seeing isn’t an industry enthusiastically embracing the opportunities digital transformation affords. Instead, we see an industry in confusion. An industry unsure what to do with the tools available to them. And it’s no surprise. When you know you have to change so many aspects of your business, where do you begin?

Maybe your first instinct is to invest in digital tech that will help you keep up with the latest disruptive market entrant. You don’t want to fall so far behind that there’s no point trying to catch up, right? Or maybe you want to wait another year or so, get a better feel for the new digital reality before investing. We can’t say which choice is the right one, because digital transformation is different for every business. There’s no playbook to guarantee a successful digital transformation in “X” months.

What health and fitness companies like yours need isn’t a 10-step plan that’s too generic to add any real value. Instead, what you need is a trusted partner with the knowledge, insight and means to help you create and execute a digital transformation strategy that works for you.

And that’s why Life Fitness is concentrating on digital.

Yes, we made our name with outstanding fitness equipment. It’s what we’ve done well for 50 years. So why pivot to digital? Why invest in the Internet of Fitness? This isn’t us hedging our bets. This is us wholeheartedly embracing what we see as the inevitable future of the health and fitness industry.

Yes, inevitable. Why?

  • There have been more connected devices than people since 2008, and smartphones, wearables and the growing list of other smart devices aren’t going anywhere soon.
  • The Fitness Market & Trend Report 2018-2020 indicates that 8 of the 10 most important communication channels for gyms are digital.
  • Digital giants like Google and Apple have already launched their own health and fitness platforms. This means the health and fitness industry’s digital transformation isn’t just likely. It’s already underway.

So, what do we think digital transformation means for the health and fitness industry? We believe that the industry’s future is a connected one. Connected equipment that is customized with a gym’s own branding and messaging. Connected trainers who are able to provide support directly to members through various digital channels. And, of course, connected members, who are able to enjoy a tailored and optimized fitness experience thanks to powerful personalization made possible by integrated wearables, centralized data management and other innovations.