Yes, there are millions of people who love to work out—people who love to work up a sweat and get excited about pumping iron or pounding out miles on a treadmill. But there are just as many people who view exercise as a necessary evil, dragging themselves to the gym only by promising themselves treats such as a massage or a shopping spree after their workout. Fitness equipment designers and manufacturers are focusing their efforts on both groups and creating fitness equipment that maximizes users' efforts and minimizes confusion, while making exercise fun, entertaining, and engaging.
That means multifamily owners and developers can fill their fitness centers with cardio and weight training equipment that is easy to use and outfitted with high-tech tools such as integrated iPod players, televisions, LCD touch screens, virtual reality software, and customizable programs.
“With every fitness center, we want to make the whole experience great,” says Robert Fields, executive vice president of Patrinely Group, a Houston-based developer of high-rise luxury residences that has four projects under development in Arizona, Florida, and Maryland. “A lot of our fitness equipment has features that take the mind off exercising.”
Fields notes that cardio equipment with televisions and integrated speakers also allows users to “multitask” while exercising. “People are leading hectic lives, and if they can watch TV and listen to their favorite music while working out, then that time becomes dual-use,” he explains. “They can combine entertainment and exercise.”
“Our fitness centers serve a variety of people, and a 65-year-old woman is going to want to use the equipment differently than a 30-year-old man,” he notes.