Last year, digital fitness became trendier than ever. With more people staying home and avoiding gyms, many fitness lovers began stocking their homes with the latest and greatest gear. These flashy new purchases kept them motivated through lockdowns, quarantines and social distancing. Now, they’re showing off some serious gains.
If you’ve finally decided to give in and treat yourself to some fitness equipment, these techy gadgets are the first things you should buy.
All good fitness studios have mirrors to check your form — and take bicep selfies. Why not recreate the look at home with a full-length mirror. If you already have one of those, invest in a techier version. The Mirror offers users an in-studio experience with classes with real trainers and live personal sessions for $40 each. Meanwhile, a heart rate monitor allows you to see how close you are to achieving your target rate in real time.
If you thrive in high-energy cycling classes or simply love hopping on a bike, the Peloton is a must-have in 2021. Whether your studio closes or it snows too much to cycle outside, you can still pedal away on this high-tech piece of equipment. Enjoy live-stream and on-demand classes with your favorite celebrity instructors and build strength and endurance on and off your bike. If you typically attend a few cycling classes per week, the Peloton could pay for itself in a matter of months.
If you’d much rather sweat on the water, try the Hydrow Rower. This fancy-looking contraption stimulates the experience of rowing a boat and gives you a full-body workout in minutes. The 22-inch touchscreen comes with front-facing speakers that completely immerse you in the experience. Plus, it’s virtually silent so you don’t feel like you’re in a hurricane. Sync this rower to your devices to keep pace with your favorite songs and track your heart rate.
Both new and seasoned runners can benefit from knowing more about their stride. Luckily, smart insoles tell you everything you need to know and more. Simply pop them in your trainers and hit the road. Built-in GPS and pressure sensors record your route and provide important stats on your step length, speed, pronation and balance. Study your feedback reports to improve your running performance and minimize injury.
If you’ve ever wanted to work out but can’t find the motivation, the Activ5 is for you. This portable little gadget creates isometric workouts so you can get your sweat on anywhere. Squeeze it between your palms during planks, sit-ups and more to track your strength and close those rings on your Apple Watch. Sure, the price tag may seem a little heft for such a small device. However, it’s quite a step up from your measly stress ball.
When it comes to staying strong and injury-free, rest and recovery are key. Take a day off, relax and use a massage gun. This handy gadget vibrates to loosen tight spots and help relieve muscle pain. From TimTams to the Theragun, these high-end massagers will help you stay strong, flexible and pain-free. They’ll also help you learn more about your own anatomy and which muscles you engage during your workouts.
Smart Swim Goggles
Most professional swimmers don’t wear much more than a one-piece swimsuit when they get in the water. After all, even body hair can cause drag and slow them down. However, these smart goggles are the exception. Wear the bare minimum and still enjoy some tech by strapping on a pair of these bad boys. The display will show your split time, stroke count, calories and other essential data to help you improve your performance.
With social distancing rules in place, many fighters have had to take a break from sparring. Instead of pounding someone’s face, they’re stuck in the gym beating up an old bag. What you — and the rest of the boxing world — needs is a Liteboxer. This 6-foot piece of equipment replicates the experience of a sparring workout at home and functions almost like a video game. Plus, it tracks your accuracy and power with every strike.
Whether you hate working out or love it with a passion, there’s technology and gear out there to motivate you. If you feel like you need a change of pace or your weight has plateaued, try out one of the items above. They won’t turn you into a pro athlete overnight, but they will put you on the right path to being the best you can be.