Connected-fitness is changing the way we train at home by offering solutions that allow people to feel connected, achieve serious results and in some cases, add an additional element of gamification, turning a workout into a social experience and keeping motivation high. With so many creative and fun solutions awaiting consumers thanks to this industry, it is no wonder that the global connected-fitness industry was valued at USD 1068.10 million in 2020 and is set to hit the billions this year.
One brand that is making waves is from Perth, Australia. It hit the scene in a big way in November 2020, securing almost $9 million USD in investment, outselling Peloton, the market leader in the connected space in their pre-sale campaign and making $1.2 Million USD in their first 6 months.
So why are people loving Vitruvian?
Picture everything you could possibly need at the gym. A spotter if you like to eccentric train or lift heavy weight. Heavy plates, kettlebells, a cable machine.
Now imagine if you didn’t need any of that to get the same result. That’s right, the Vitruvian Trainer + can do it all for you all from the one machine.
Vitruvian is on a mission to create the smartest workout an individual can have. The trainer enables personalised weight, reps and workouts. It records all of your results to ensure the next time you train, you continue to progress rather than plateau, which is a common complaint when it comes to an at-home workout. Leading fitness trainers around the world have been compiling their favourite exercises which have all been programmed into the Vitruvian app. The app can even change weight while you are working out depending on what you need and it acts as a spotter for you.
“Vitruvian’s dynamic tension is like a tug of war that you can never win, because the machine will always be slightly better than you” says Jon Gregory, founder of Vitruvian.
“What we are trying to do with the trainer is to create a machine that behaves like human muscle. It’s like arm wrestling a Tesla.”
How does the Vitruvian Trainer+ work?
The Vitruvian Trainer + is the company’s second generation product which was preceded by the V-Form trainer which launched in November 2020.
How it works is that within the slimline carbon fibre platform are two very small, very powerful motors that deliver digital weight via adaptive algorithmic technology and two retractable cables. The resistance generated ranges from 7lbs – 400lbs.
Responding to the user’s physical actions, the Vitruvian Trainer + adjusts the force over 50 times per second. Acting as a spotter, it both assists and challenges the user to perform well, complete the exercise and constantly progress towards new achievements.
The adaptive weight creates the ultimate workout experience allowing for what becomes a powerful relationship between (wo)man and machine. With each lift, the user experiences the dynamic tension, a feeling utterly incomparable to lifting static weight.
Competitors in the digital weight arena cannot deliver anywhere near the amount of weight as the Vitruvian Trainer +. A free standing, compact device.
You essentially have an entire gym in one sleek package that looks great at home, but can also easily be stored under the bed if you want it out of the way. Weighing just 83lbs with small wheels on the bottom of one side, it is easy to manoeuvre.
A Vitruvian workout is designed for simplicity, enjoyment and pure focus.
There are no barriers to the user getting down to it. No wasted or unfocused time commuting to the gym, setting up, moving stations, loading/unloading weight, sharing equipment or recording activity in a progress diary.
Using their smartphone, users simply connect via the QR code on their Vitruvian Trainer+.
There are over 200 exercises that they can perform or users can create and share their own custom workout.
They can engage in over a hundred classes and growing weekly, or technique workshops taught by some of the most prestigious trainers around the world.
Eccentric training, solo – is one of Vitruvian’s USPs that is blowing minds across the fitness and elite athletic training spectrum. Users can track activity and performance progress using high-level and fine-grain data. The Leaderboard is also very popular with users.
In the coming months Vitruvian will be dropping a host of new features including goal orientated 4-12 week programs, a smart TV app, a gamified fitness experience with four games initially, and users will soon be able to create their own communities and compare their progress with teams.
A big part of the Vitruvian Trainer + is its ability to allow you to train eccentrically without a spotter.
Generally, with the reps while using the trainer, you will have weight engaged on for both phases of the movement, whereas when using a dumb weight, you only have weight as you lift it up concentrically, but as you lower the weight back down (the eccentric phase) you won’t be working as hard unless you have a spotter who can lift a heavy enough weight into your hands for you, allowing you to lower it eccentrically.
No other piece of technology empowers individuals with finely tuned eccentric training.
Eccentric training is a highly efficient and effective training modality known to elite athletes, exercise physiologists, physical medical practitioners and well-researched lifting enthusiasts .
“Eccentric exercise provides a potent training stimulus causing significant improvements in muscle strength, muscle size, and flexibility, and also improves risk factors for cardiovascular disease. What’s more, even though eccentrics lead to numerous benefits in health and function, they are perceived to be easier and less fatiguing. This occurs because eccentrics are metabolically efficient, requiring less oxygen than other types of muscle contractions.”
– Dr. James Nuzzo, Vitruvian Exercise Science Research, Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, PhD Exercise Physiology.
Eccentric training is the repeated exercise, or application of tension, to a muscle as it lengthens. During eccentrics, the muscle’s force-producing capacity is at its greatest. In other words, we are stronger during the eccentric phase than in the concentric (by around 20%!).
This is why a training partner is ordinarily necessary for eccentric training – to load additional weight for us after the concentric “lift”. For example, you can’t lift 110lbs by yourself then add another 20lbs in order to lower 130lbs.
The Trainer empowers the user to maximise time under tension, by loading and unloading the weight at the right time, as well as adjusting the amount of weight in fractional, responsive and highly dynamic ways to ‘spot’ the user to reach their goals safely.