Immersive Fitness – Making Fitness Goals Easier to Reach

Immersive Fitness - Making Fitness Goals Easier to Reach

Fitness technology, also referred to as digital health, is making fitness more relevant and interesting to the Millennial generation. Driving this convergence of fitness and technology is this new generation who grew up on Apple, Google, smartphones, and smartwatches. They’re seeking fitness options that are along the same technological lines. Today’s blog discusses Immersive Fitness, a line of studio programming that intermarries exercise with technology.

Immersive Fitness was created by Reebok and Les Mills, based on the theory that if your psyche is immersed in the visual aspects of your workout you’ll feel the fatigue less.  Studios using Immersive Fitness offer a visual component to their fitness classes with landscapes and computerized graphics. [1] The idea is to focus on the present, the experience you’re in now, which will push you harder and stimulate your senses.

How Immersive Fitness Targets the Senses

One reason why many people dislike exercise is that they simply get bored. Immersive fitness experiences are taking some of the best techniques that exist in experience design and are using that to change up the exercise experience by manipulating the senses and presenting to the participant goals, plus the sense of accomplishment when they reach those goals. [2]

Touch

Touch has always been a part of fitness, but immersive yoga takes it to a new level, where you pay specific attention to how you feel through each movement, embedding a more physical element into the typically mind-focused session. [3]

Many meditation and yoga studios today embed a physical aspect in their sessions. For example, Inscape of NYC begins their meditation sessions by having students vigorously rub their hands together. It’s suggested this brings the student’s focus into the present.

Sound

Part meditation, part listening exercise, sound baths are healing musical performances played with Himalayan singing bowls, crystal bowls, gongs, biosonic tuning forks, shamanic drumming, and chanting. Participants lay on the floor in supported savasana (corpse pose) and let the waves of sound wash over them. A sound bath doesn’t have the distractions of rhythm, melody, and arrangement. [4]

Sight

With their sense of sight removed students are better able to focus on sounds and touch. Again, this brings and keeps the student in the present. In facilities that do not completely remove the sense of sight, sight is used for concentration and/or relaxation. [5]

Taste

Immersive eating is a mindful eating experience with food and a drink (healthy, herbal and non-alcoholic). The meal will be eaten in complete silence and with focus on the process of eating and is often preceded by a Vedic chant or something similar. [6]

So…

Additional sound, sight, and smell elements make you work harder by distracting you. This makes it easier to push through the most challenging parts of your workout.

“If you’re looking for something to push you a little more and help you work at a higher level, these classes could be the answer to your plateau problems. For some people, this kind of experience can be truly stimulating — almost addictive because it’s so much sensory stimulation.”

– Leah Lagos, licensed psychologist via Daily Burn [7]

Some studios that have begun incorporating immersive experiences have seen as much as a 25% increase in attendance. [8] Clearly, there has been a growing consumer demand for more engaging exercise experiences, and immersive fitness is meeting it!

Check out these videos on Immersive Fitness

 

 

 

Image Credit:  lsnglobal.com
Video Credits:  YouTube

 

Post by Andrea Rogers