Feeling unmotivated to get in your workout? Oh well, guess you should just go play a video game instead. Of course, if you happen to have a virtual reality headset and the right type of game, you may be able to enjoy the best of both worlds. That’s right, VR workouts are a thing, and they actually work! Just ask Bill Lindsey who lost 90 pounds in part by committing to virtual reality exercise.
What exactly does fitness in VR look like, and how can you get the body you want by slipping on a VR headset? Let’s explore the new and growing world of VR exercise and learn about how EōS Fitness is bringing VR workouts to a gym near you.
A Quick Refresher on Virtual Reality
Reports of the demise of virtual reality have been greatly exaggerated. In fact, after a few fits and starts, virtual reality technology is alive and well… and growing. Statista estimated that the year 2018 would see 171 million VR users around the world. With the release of the popular Oculus Quest in 2019, that number is only likely to grow. Wait…, slow down. What is virtual reality again?
As described by VeryWellFit in an article titled “Is Virtual Reality the Future of Exercise?” virtual reality is “where a person’s environment is completely replaced by a digital one.” This is achieved through the use of a headset that can project any type of landscape imaginable. Want to perform yoga on a mountaintop or explore the moon without a spacesuit? With virtual reality, you can do it. Currently, some of the most popular VR setups are:
(Note: The world of VR goes deep, and there are plenty of accessories that heavy gamers can purchase, including VR bodysuits and specialized treadmills. In this article, we’ll focus on the more consumer-friendly setups.) This all may sound great for an immersive gaming experience, but what does virtual reality have to do with exercise?
Introducing VR Workouts at EōS Fitness
The world of virtual reality is still young, but already, many are starting to see its potential for helping people add more movement and fitness into their lives. While most popular VR games are not expressly designed with fitness as a top priority, many do force users to move as part of the gameplay.
Games such as Beat Saber, Box VR, and Audio Trip are beloved for giving users great gameplay and a good workout at the same time. But what if users could play a VR game specifically designed for fitness?
That’s exactly what health and fitness industry veterans Preston Lewis and Ryan DeLuca wanted to offer. The two entrepreneurs and founders of Bodybuilding.com developed Black Box VR, a VR system that offers users a full-body workout. Now, Black Box is partnering with EōS Fitness to offer their VR workouts to EōS gym members!
What makes Black Box so unique is that the VR game syncs with a specialized resistance machine, allowing users to perform both muscle-building movements and cardio movements in the game. Black Box turns fitness into a fun and addictive game, forcing gamers to squat, punch, and utilize the resistance machine to score points and level up. Users can even play against real-world opponents.
Currently, EōS Fitness is gearing up to offer Black Box to members at select gyms. Members will be able to don the VR headset, sync to the resistance machine, and start gaming and working out at the same time. EōS plans to offer a free trial period of Black Box to all members before offering it as an add-on amenity.
An Affordable VR Exercise Experience for All
For casual gamers, one of the main drawbacks of virtual reality is its cost. Even the most economical headsets start at around $200, and a top-rated headset can ring in at $600 or more. Additionally, it may be necessary to purchase a computer and internet service to provide the processing power and bandwidth to support a VR system.
The partnership between Black Box and EōS Fitness opens up the possibility of virtual reality exercise to all. Members can enjoy the Black Box trial period while only paying their normal, low-cost EōS membership dues. The add-on cost, if a member decides to continue with Black Box, will be affordable.
Oh, and here’s one more bonus of going to the gym to use VR. EōS members won’t have to worry about banging into the coffee table or stepping on the cat’s tail when they enjoy a VR experience at the gym!
Benefits of VR Workouts
The Black Box VR experience sounds like fun. Those new to VR probably wonder if it can actually help everyday people burn calories without jumping on a treadmill or grabbing a barbell. Here are some of the main benefits of VR exercise.
Good bridge to exercise
Designing a workout can feel overwhelming, especially for those who don’t know where, how, or when to start. However, playing a video game is fun and easy and can be a great starting point to get gamers moving. This is why VR exercise is particularly valuable for beginning exercisers.
Video game companies have mastered the art of keeping gamers interested. Now, they can use
the power of gamification to encourage players to exercise. Gamers who want to win a race or accrue points or make it through a song without messing up won’t even realize how much they’re moving. Those burned calories still count, though. (Here are some great tips on how to stick with your fitness routine.)
The beauty of technology-based fitness is the ability to customize. VR gamers can increase the difficulty of their game as they progress and change the background, music, and other settings. Black Box, for example, optimizes a gamer’s fitness experience based on past and current performance to challenge the gamer and speed up their fitness results constantly.
Ready to Give VR Fitness a Try?
EōS Fitness is currently rolling out Black Box in select gyms. If your gym doesn’t offer Black Box yet, you’ll need just a little patience. (How about taking a group fitness class in the meantime?) As soon as Black Box is offered at your EōS, make sure to sign up and take advantage of your free trial.
Not a member of EōS? Find a gym near you.