Theoretical Applications of iPhone Apps for Exercise
Apps Exercise is one of the fastest growing segments in the smartphone market. Smartphones have surpassed the BlackBerry, iPhones and Android devices to become the second most popular consumer device in the world after smartphones. The Apple and Google Play apps stores offer many different apps that can help users keep track of their exercise activities, track their progress and compete against each other with other fitness enthusiasts around the world. It can also help individuals find local gyms and fitness centers by integrating with third-party services like Zagat, TripAdvisor and others. With the Apple Watch you can also view and track your exercise activity.
An exercise app can analyze the data it collects from the users including their demographics, workout routines and average calories burned per session. These are analyzed on a person-by-person basis for factors like demographics, fitness level, gender and location. Different types of information are collected from these participants such as duration of time exercising, type of equipment used and types of workouts including cardio and weights. This enables the app to create different indicators and reports depending on its current database. Some examples include:
Cardio Resistance Score – This app analyzes the users exercise habits and performance based on the number of calories burned. It then combines this data with the demographics of the participants. It then gives the users a percentage score for each category. The three groups are: Beginners, intermediate and advanced. This assists beginners in getting a good idea of how much they have to work to achieve their fitness goals.
Exercise Self-efficacy – The main goal of the Exercise app is to create a platform where businesses and institutions can use to improve the health and fitness of their employees. Surveys are taken periodically and they collect data from actual surveys that have been taken by participants themselves. They then create rankings based on the exercise self-efficacy of employees. The higher the score, the more likely they are to get a job with a company that promotes healthy living and exercise.
Monitoring Levels – The Health app use data gathered from previous health audits to identify trends. With the help of this information, improved treatment options can be identified. It may help in developing more effective training strategies as well. If there is an increase in activity levels among employees, the HR team will know that the employee’s health is adversely affected. Hence, they can proactively recommend better workout routines and schedules. The app also allows you to track your progress over time and recommend an annual review.
Motivation and Support – Another of the apps that monitors and identifies trends is the Fitness and Exercise Monitor. It does this through surveying actual physical activities performed at work, home, and leisure. It provides insights on which activities are most popular and the most popular amongst employees, management and customers. With this information, it may help to develop interventions to overcome workplace and personal obstacles and provide insight on how to increase workplace health and fitness levels.
Beyond mere monitoring, some apps measure movements, provide feedback, analyze heart rate, measure calories burned and provide insights on the factors that lead to poor health. For instance, the Workout Evaluator app, by Cybex, uses data from a number of workout related apps to determine an individual’s optimum metabolic zone (the rate of energy used during the day). Through this, it helps individuals identify when it is most advantageous to exercise and when it would be more beneficial to relax. By providing feedback on an individual’s performance, it can also identify behavioral factors such as motivation and stress that may affect exercise participation. Such apps may serve as excellent tools to identify potential barriers to exercise and to reduce them.
Although these apps may be just theories-driven, they have the potential to help users overcome hurdles to exercise. These apps provide insight and support that cannot always be obtained from books, websites and consultants. Studies have shown that regular physical activity is the first step towards improved health. This may be true because physical activity promotes blood circulation, enhances flexibility and relieves stress. Therefore, it would make sense for companies to invest in apps that can help users overcome obstacles and achieve optimum health.