When the Work From Home directive was announced internationally, and it became apparent that we could all be spending an extended time period indoors without access to our usual fitness facilities, resources and habits, the imaginations of the many fitness communities went into overdrive. How would we keep working towards our fitness ambitions without the vast majority of the equipment and coaching we rely upon to progress? Within a matter of weeks there was a global shortage of dumbbells and other home equipment items as weightlifters and pilates fans alike stockpiled whatever home-gym equipment they could get their hands on to keep them occupied- and keep them moving- during lockdown.
However, to the surprise and delight of many, one of the quickest and most effective industry pivots we have witnessed during COVID times has been that of the fitness industry. Gyms, trainers and coaches of all varieties have quickly changed the way they operate to meet the needs of their clients so smoothly that fitness activities have become the primary source of reliable routine and support for many of us during these strange times. And, as it turns out, many have found the new normal highly compatible with a full mind and body health routine: workout scheduling has never before been so easy to adhere to, turnaround times for returning to work and other activities are minimal, nutrition approaches are less of a struggle as cookery at home thrives and the temptation of convenience food is relieved, and finding time for recovery (i.e, stretching, mobility, sleep levels and mindfulness) is suddenly an easy task- and an enjoyable one too.
So how have fitness workers managed to deliver a full offering, despite the lack of a physical facility and face-to-face communication? This has been managed through a comprehensive virtual transformation: online classes, coaching calls and recovery sessions supported by a full complement of fitness apps to provide solutions to the accessory requirements of athletes. But which platforms have become most useful?
Class Streaming: Mindbody.io
A live class finding and streaming platform, Mindbody emerged from the simple idea that small business owners deserve the time to focus on what matters most: their customers. The software has transformed that vision into the world’s leading wellness services marketplace, linking hundreds of thousands of passionate health, wellness, and beauty professionals to the millions of clients they serve. Operating similarly to Zoom, athletes sign in and gain access to a live class or course from their chosen provider (worldwide!). It is a quick and easy way to find a new community to tap into, and connect with, when physical attendance isn’t an option.
Technique Correction & Feedback: Coach Eye App
The athlete records a video of them doing an activity. The coach inputs this into the app and is able to deliver instant feedback, slowing down, speeding up and drawing on footage to deliver helpful cues and advice.
Coach’s Eye is the world’s leading video platform for coaches and athletes who need to review athlete technique and game film. Coach’s Eye delivers state of the art coaching and content management tools on your mobile devices.
This app enables you to record your players and instantly show them how to improve, right on the field (or, as the case may be, their back garden). With the tools built into the app, trainers are able to give instant feedback, refining, analyzing, and even demonstrating proper form.
Nutrition Control: MyFitnessPal
When we are all living just an arm’s reach from the fridge, an app like MyFitnessPal can be an extraordinary tool in nutrition management. With bespoke plans calculated specifically for you and your goal (whether that is to slim down, bulk up or maintain your current body composition), MFP is a handy app that allows you to keep a track of your calories taken in and your calories burned.
“Study after study has confirmed the benefits of keeping track of the food you eat and the activity you do. It’s simple – the more consistently you track your food intake, the more likely you are to lose weight. That’s why every successful weight management program suggests that you keep a food diary and/or an activity log. But recording everything you eat without the right tools can be tedious at best, or simply impossible at worst. At MyFitnessPal.com, we focus on making sure you can log your meals as quickly and easily as possible. Because the easier we make it for you, the more likely you are to stay on track, and the more likely you are to succeed in your weight loss goals.”
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Mindfulness & Meditation: Calm App
Mindfulness and meditation are an important part of mental health and physical fitness when employed as part of a full programme, and are widely lauded by sports psychologists as crucial skills for competitive athletes and home-gym enthusiasts alike. In place of mindfulness sessions with a coach, a guiding app such as Calm works perfectly as a replacement.
Calm is a leading app for meditation and sleep. Many report experiencing lower stress, less anxiety, and more restful sleep with their guided meditations, Sleep Stories, breathing programs, masterclasses, and relaxing music. Recommended by top psychologists, therapists, and mental health experts. Calm is the perfect mindfulness app for beginners, but also includes hundreds of programs for intermediate and advanced users. Guided meditation sessions are available in lengths of 3, 5, 10, 15, 20 or 25 minutes so you can choose the perfect length to fit with your schedule.
An important part of remaining fit is remaining mobile: improving your personal flexibility and joint mobility. GOWOD allows you to test your mobility and establish a general mobility score, and zone by zone. When it has established your mobility level for each body zone, it delivers a personalised programme to support you in improving your mobility in key areas of your physicality.
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