The Largest Digital Health and Fitness Community?

I recently received word that MyFitnessPal and Under Armour were joining forces to create a group of over 120 million members. Now, to be honest, I don’t really like Under Armour THAT much. I have nothing against it but when I was a competitive athlete (a while ago), I found Adidas, Nike, and Puma created training apparel that was more comfortable and effective to boost my training. For the high prices of their Cold and Heat gear, their sizing was awkward for certain athletic (and non-athletic) builds and I didn’t find them to benefit thermo-regulation. (The process of the body trying to maintain its proper temperature despite extreme temps on the outside that could lead to hyper or hypo-thermia.)

On the other hand, I recommend MyFitnessPal to nearly all of my clients, athletes, members, etc that are focused on lifestyle changes and losing, gaining, or maintaining weight. I have it myself although I don’t use it, but Fit does. (My closet is all Adidas, Nike, and Puma, but no UA. If you’re curious, all my socks and underwear are Puma, all my shoes are Nike, all my clothing is Adidas.) It’s a great, free tool that has really improved since it was first introduced. I find that being able to watch my clients gives them more accountability and helps them avoid bad choices. The new(er) bar-code feature is great, too.

Now, with this partnership, they are boasting three apps. Under Armour RECORD, “a complete 24/7 fitness dashboard” that I have never heard of before now; Endomondo, “the most social and advanced personal training app in the world” of which I have also never heard or seen; and MapMyFitness, “the industry leading GPS based fitness tracker” which I know of and think of as one of the best. It’s great that MyFitnessPal’s CEO Mike Lee is stating that nothing about the MyFitnessPal experience will change because it has provided such a great service.

My one concern moving forward is how will they differentiate between a “community” and a group of hundred of millions of users. Bodybuilding.com, YouTube, and CrossFit might be the closest possible pieces of the fitness industry that is a community and even that is arguable since one isn’t digitally based, one focuses on aesthetics more than performance, and the other is split into two major groups, one that is supportive and one that is hostile. Qinetic.com, on the other hand, has all of the right pieces in place, it’s just small since it’s a young company that is heavily centered in New York City. I, personally, am looking forward to how these two companies will actually try to make this a real community.

I can’t wait to see who in the digital fitness industry will really take the center stage and become the most supportive, well-rounded, and quality-controlled leader in that race. Obviously, all of these resources at your disposal take away the ability to make some excuses and help you get, or stay, hungry and fit!

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