Tracking your workouts just got easier with Apple GymKit.
You know how your Apple Watch is pretty much the most amazing personal assistant/calendar/alarm clock/health tracker/heart monitor/playlist/etc.? That is, it’s amazing for everything except when it comes to tracking your workout on a stationary cardio machine. Well, Apple has just fixed that issue with the launch of GymKit in Canada. The technology company announced a massive partnership with all major manufacturers of gym equipment, representing 80 percent of the world’s cardio equipment manufacturers. (Think: Life Fitness, Matrix and Technogym, among others.) It’s the new standard, that from now on, all cardio equipment made by these manufacturers will be Apple GymKit enabled.
So, what is Apple GymKit?
Apple GymKit allows customers to pair their Apple Watch directly to their cardio machine with a simple tap. Instead of manually entering your height, weight and age into the cardio machine, you can tap your watch to the NFC reader, which automatically opens the workout app, and the watch and machine will sync for the most accurate measurements possible. Your total distance, elevation, heart rate and calories burned will record on your Apple Watch and you won’t need to input that data manually. Because if you didn’t log your workout, does it really count?
Once you’re finished, you can end the workout by touching your watch to disconnect, or you can simply step off of the machine, which automatically ends the connection and wipes your information from the cardio machine (so you don’t have to worry about the person after you seeing your data).
Apple GymKit technology was first announced in July 2017, but just launched in Canada this month (May) at Equinox. The health club’s Yorkville location already has all its machines fully equipped with the new technology and other Equinox locations will soon follow suit. As health clubs like GoodLife and Orangetheory Fitness replace their cardio equipment, they’ll automatically be upgrading to Apple GymKit enabled equipment. (This is the best gym in Canada, as voted by Best Health readers.)
Life Fitness is particularly enthusiastic about the partnership because this continued integration of technology into fitness is where the industry is headed, says Lauren Platt, public relations manager at Life Fitness. “We really envision more and more exercisers to simply log in with their Apple Watch, which is really beneficial because our equipment knows exactly how many miles you’ve gone on the bike or how many miles you’ve run on the treadmill,” she says.
This seamless sync of data is a great way for health clubs to personalize the experience, says Samir Desai, chief information officer at Equinox Fitness, noting that members who use the Equinox app can integrate it with their Apple Health data for even more customization. “The more we understand about what our members are doing inside of the club, the better we can recommend other aspects of the club, like classes,” he says. Be sure to download these incredible new health apps, too.
Apple is quick to note that all user data, especially all health data, is your data and it stays on your phone. If you want to share that data, you need to grant access to a third party app — for example, the Equinox app — which will then use that data to provide more personalized suggestions. Sounds like the future of fitness has arrived, doesn’t it? Here’s more on how your smartphone can help you manage your health.