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3 Posts authored by: Intel_Don

Tax Day and the Fitness Industry

 

There are only a couple of things that are certain in this life – death and taxes.  This is the time of year when a lot of things are upon us that remind us about life including spring time and yes – the dreaded Tax Filing Day.  It is a reminder that we are still alive and since we have been given this reminder each year by our government (at least in the US) J.  Why don’t we look at this a bit differently and ask ourselves, “We are alive but are we really living?”  This is where the fitness piece comes in.  In an ever increasingly stressed, always on, sleep deprived and sedentary society the opportunity for fitness and wellness to step in the forefront of this global health crisis is bigger than ever to help people “live and achieve” what they were created to do.   I got to see this first hand with a bunch of excellent seminars at this year’s 2011 IHRSA event which was held in San Francisco.

 

I’m fortunate to have played a part in the formation of the Fitness Industry Technology Council which was launched after an industry dinner Intel hosted with several fitness industry leaders with the help of a friend and colleague, Dr. Kevin Steele following the 2010 IHRSA event held in San Diego.  This council, made up of many leading fitness companies, believes that now is the time for the fitness, wellness and medical industry to work together in utilizing technology in greater ways to help address this global health crisis.  Here are the slides on the information we presented at this year’s event.

 

At IHRSA, the key themes for me were the coordination of medical activity into the industry and integrated embedded computers everywhere.  There were innovative touch screen computers with engaging user interface experiences in use everywhere on various types of equipment that will soon be coming to a club near you.  There were also plenty of examples of companies using innovative approaches with technology.  Here is an example of one innovative company, Respondesign, and what they are doing.

You can see more innovative fitness ideas that companies are using today at www.intel.com/go/fitness

 

Finally, when you think about what key technologies are going to need to be into place to facilitate this vision, cloud computing and security are the two that come to mind.  You need robust security solutions as the medical, fitness and wellness communities become more tightly integrated.  You want to make sure your data is secure and that only the eyes of who is supposed to see and exchange that information is indeed the eyes that see it.  We’ll need that in the cloud and on the equipment that is used to facilitate these benefits in my opinion extending out to devices that we carry into the gym or home.

 

What did you see at IHRSA or FIBO that impressed you and what were your key takeaways from there?

The start of the New Year is one of great anticipation.  It is a time when we make resolutions and endeavor to become better people throughout the course of the year.  It is a time when we flood into gyms and health clubs hoping to lose weight or improve ourselves physically by being more active.

 

I myself ponder this as I attempt to continue with the progress that I was able to achieve over the last year as part of Intel’s first structured corporate wellness program.  One of the key questions that I struggle with is what exercises to do?  The methodology for achieving our goals can be all over the place depending on the gym or trainer.

 

With this knowledge in hand, Intel and fitness company Core Performance, a subsidiary of Athletes’ Performance, came together early last year over a shared vision of what the next generation gym should be.

 

In February 2010, the Intel fitness center at its Chandler, AZ campus was outfitted with proprietary CPro strength equipment and ESD (energy system development) cardio equipment from Core Performance to create a high-tech gym.

 

Powered by Intel Core 2 Duo processors, the CPro and ESD exercise equipment deliver an efficient, personalized workout to each individual. The fitness equipment is connected to Intel Xeon processor-based servers which provide the computing horsepower to crunch through Core Performance’s 33,000-rule prescription engine to tailor an exercise program specific to an individual’s goals. Tracking each movement and heartbeat, Core Performance is able to provide a best-in-class experience.

 

At this time, we also developed a study to determine the effects of a structured fitness program featuring the latest technologies versus a self-directed program with standard equipment to see what the results would look like in a corporate wellness environment.  Core Performance specialists started each employee’s experience with a comprehensive assessment of their current health, including a Functional Movement Screen, a VO2 test, a goal-setting exercise, and nutrition consultation.

 

In addition to working with a specialist, the equipment also made employee work outs easier by prescribing a workout built specifically for their needs and goals. The CPro equipment automatically adjusts to an employee’s height, and the resistance alters so that each person is training at his or her level. The CPro allows employees to preview their workouts, progress through the workouts at their own pace, track repetitions and power output, and record data to ensure that they progress toward their goals.

 

The 14-week study yielded amazing results.  Study participants, two thirds of whom were previously categorized as inactive and non-movers, saw an average loss of 14 pounds of fat, five percent decrease in cholesterol and a 23 percent improvement of flexibility and agility, among other results[1].

 

These powerful results show that programs customized towards an individual's personal goals with integrated technology to simplify the workout, really take the guesswork out of fitness while keeping it fun, effective and sustainable.

 

Hear from our Core Performance personal trainer and study participant, Megan Walsh, in the video below.

 

Now, I’d like to hear from you how technology helped you achieve amazing results in your life or business. Please add your comments below.

 

[1] Amanda Carlson-Phillips1, Bill Campbell2

 

1Athletes' Performance, Phoenix, AZ

2Department of Physical Education and Exercise Science, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL

We are going to be talking a lot more about proactive health and fitness in the days to come along with passing along significant developments, thoughts and opinions on issues facing the healthcare, medical device, fitness and athletic markets.  I invite you to join these discussions as well.  We recently created a new location for our fitness-based collateral at www.intel.com/go/fitness where you will find content related to our business in fitness thus far.

 

Talk to you soon!

 

D

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