Tag: Indoor cycling trends

Style / substance

Since the early days of boutique studios, all founders have had to answer the question:
‘I have a gym membership, so why should I pay extra to attend classes at your studio?’

All too often, their answer seems to be to place the emphasis – and large amounts of capital – on purchasing the hardware (the equipment and overall studio aesthetic) and not on developing the software (the people, programmes and procedures). Of course, it’s important to have a nice facility and brand book, but this will only get the business so far. The people executing are key.

Put another way, your lighting budget cannot be higher than your budget for staff training, full stop.

So, how well prepared are your instructors? For how long have they been teaching, have they done a proper science-based certification, how much continuing education have they had, is there mentorship in place for their ongoing development? Your instructors are your studio, and they must be developed and mentored for both substance and style, knowledge and aesthetics.

Injuries will happen down the line if the class doesn’t have ample substance, if there are holes in the curriculum, inefficient speeds or excessive movements being incorporated. There are rules when it comes to the human body, but these are often ignored. It’s a problem I’m seeing all over the world.

You also have to make sure your classes are hard enough: customers shouldn’t be able to do two or three in a row. Cycling nowadays is what I call enterTRAINment, but if it’s all entertainment and no training – all style and no substance – it’s a problem.

Consumers are catching on en masse to what low-impact, proper riding should feel like. They also expect measurable growth and results. Do your classes deliver this? Because you can be performance-based and still ride on the beat – you don’t have to be one or the other. Learn fun ways to structure intervals and blend this with the coolest music to deliver a metrics-focused, goals-driven class experience with just as much style, musicality and enterTRAINment value from the instructor as a class elsewhere with dance moves and laser lights.

philip mills style and substance indoor cycling clubs
Phillip Mills

Phillip Mills

Executive director, Les Mills International

I don’t have a problem with a cycling class being entertaining. We are, after all, in the motivation business as much as we are in the fitness business. We have to make group exercise fun. At Les Mills, we’ve pushed entertainment to the max in our TRIP classes. Other brands like SoulCycle deliver entertainment through their lighting, their music, their excellent instructors, the great presentation of their classes.

But I do have an important observation. We’ve developed three cycling classes at Les Mills over the years – RPM, SPRINT and THE TRIP – and that’s because people like cycling. You don’t have to add other exercises to it. Give people the essence of what it is they’ve come to you for. Give them the best feeling of cycling you can, then encourage them to take part in other modalities separately so they enjoy the best possible feeling of those too.

Integrating light hand weights into a cycling class, for example… If that’s the only class you ever do, you might like the fact it includes a bit of upper body, but realistically you’ll get far more benefit and far more enjoyment from doing weights in a different format – in the gym, for example, or a BODYPUMP class. The same goes for other modalities. You don’t have to mix everything up in one class.

I also have questions about some of the choreography I see out there – all that standing in the pedals and sprinting. I think majoring on that sort of choreography actually narrows your audience, because it’s very hard for most people to do. It also comes with an injury risk.

In our classes, if you’re standing in the pedals, you’re doing a hill climb: slow, high resistance, working legs, glutes and core. Sprinting is done in the saddle, where people are able to do it – and do it safely. This, we believe, is the way to maximise the benefits.

For me, then, it isn’t about form versus content, style versus substance. You do want both – but first and foremost you need to get your content right.

style substance sarah-jane aboboto indoor cycling
Sarah-Jane Aboboto

Sarah-Jane (SJ) Aboboto

Creator & founder, GrooveCycle

As a professional dancer, indoor cycling was never on my radar. Moving while getting lost in the music was my way of staying healthy and active.

That changed when I experienced my first SoulCycle class, where the music and what I was doing on the bike were so well linked. Riding in sync with the music, going through waves of different emotions, I got a similar feeling to when I danced – and in turn, that encouraged me to work harder.

And music is a motivator for many people. When accompanied with good planning and coaching, the right music choices play a significant role in getting riders into the red and yellow ‘performance’ heart rate zones without even realising it. By which I’m trying to say, rhythm classes don’t mean you won’t get results. Instructors just have to keep their skills sharpened so they always deliver the best possible experience, the best journey, for their style of class.

With this thought in mind, I created GrooveCycle, which offers two styles of rhythm cycling. My main purpose: to get more people to be active, feel good, release their stresses and have fun – all in a safe environment that’s focused on preventing injuries and avoiding excessive workload. But interestingly, we’ve found it appeals to a very mixed audience: not only people who previously felt indoor cycling wasn’t for them, but also avid outdoor cyclists and regular indoor cyclists.

Nevertheless, I had a mixed bag of opinion: some people loved the creativity and fresh approach to exercise; others resisted it, saying it was more style over substance. But those who actually tried a class tended to come back for more. Why? Because we deliver a great balance between style and substance: an awesome experience and a great workout.

In fact, I’ve come to appreciate data and performance riding in my other role as Stages master educator, and I firmly believe you can connect and combine the two worlds. Rather than seeing rhythm as style and performance as substance, both can work together to boost motivation and effort levels, so riders see and feel the results.

Geoff Bamber

Founder & CEO, Digme Fitness

The group fitness market generally, and the cycling studio market specifically, have grown hugely over the last few years. It’s therefore inevitable that competitors are looking for ways to differentiate their brands, but it’s important to do so carefully.

Cycling is a wonderful, accessible form of group exercise, but like most forms of exercise it can be compromised by poor instruction or programming that – in an attempt to be fun or cool – renders it less safe or less effective.

Our view: it’s not fun or cool to be injured! The coolest kind of exercise is the kind you go back to time and again, getting fitter each time, and that can be done safely, without risk of injury.

That’s why, although community and fun are key to our offering at Digme, we believe the workout is king. Our focus is always on giving people a safe, authentic, effective workout. We believe authenticity and safety are under-rated qualities in cycling classes: we never instruct movements or pedal speeds that we believe to be unsafe.

And then effective: this is really key for us and why, going back to the topic being discussed, we’re confident in the ‘substance’ of our classes.

We have a series of signature Perform workouts, for example, which engage with more technical concepts such as Functional Threshold Power to customise workouts to the individual, making them tough but inclusive. We use in-class technology to periodically drop in challenges, motivating customers to really push themselves. And we gather highly accurate data from our bikes, so riders receive meaningful feedback and can track real, tangible progress – even before it’s visible physically.

Hilary Rowland

Co-founder, Boom Cycle

Funnily enough, since day one we’ve always said we were ‘substance over style’. In part, this is down to our fit-outs, which are nice but without over-spending on being really flashy. We focus most of our efforts and energy on the product itself: the class content and delivery.

A Boom Cycle ride is a metric- free, party-on-a-bike style experience that focuses on bringing escapism to riders’ busy lives – but it’s also a workout that packs a punch.

Our rides are led by expert motivators, all of whom we have hand-picked via auditions and then intensively trained through a five- to six-week training programme called Boom-i-versity. This is a very challenging programme to ensure all our instructors bring the best possible experience to our riders.

In terms of the classes themselves, these have also been very carefully designed. They
feature simple moves that are easy to understand and follow, and everything is underpinned by keeping the core tight and the right amount of resistance on the bike. All moves (especially upper body) are executed within the back-to-forward plane only.

A Boom Cycle ride at its basic level is challenging, so riders are advised they can sit down and take a break whenever they want or need to.

Yet all of this is done in a way that’s inclusive and unpretentious. No numbers, no competition, just fun and high fives all round. With the lights low and a world-class sound system, we engage riders mentally as well as physically, immersing them in the ultimate ‘party on a bike’ experience and encouraging them to cut loose from their day and forget their stresses.

We’re proud to have created five thriving studios and a Boom’ing community in each of these.

Cycling Takeaways

#1 It’s not about cycling

The best way to think about the future of at-home cycling is to forget about cycling altogether. Think of it as just another service you’re passionate about receiving. Think food. Think fashion. Think human behaviour. 

Amazon has primed us to expect immediate delivery by drone or robot, Netflix is feeding us intoxicating content based on our preferences, Fortnite has us adventuring off-world with friends. These examples tap the tenets of convenience, hyper-personalisation and community and are showing fitness the way – which brings us to Peloton.

at-home cycling woman

#2 You don’t have to be first but you do have to be best –  and loudest

Reported to have more customers than SoulCycle and better retention than Equinox, Peloton was not the first to deliver at-home workouts by a long shot, riding the slipstream of greats before them – from Jane Fonda to Beachbody’s P90X to Kayla Itsines getting more bodies into bikinis than anyone before. 

However, what Peloton has done is wheel a boutique fitness experience into the home with a software-hardware-subscription solution that happily touts a 2-foot commute – and which it then advertised, everywhere. 

#3 It’s about the bike

Cycling is a business basic for the body.It meets our bipedal design in the seat, offers low impact but weight-bearing exercise, easily adjusts for pace and resistance, has you sweating within minutes by dialling to the right, and requires next to no co-ordination. 

Boom. A slam dunk for fitness and the reason it has dominated gyms, studios – and our own basements – since 1965.

#4 … But also not

Purists now measure up to Zwift, rhythm-riders follow the beat and SoulCycle gets predictably spiritual by using the bike as the vessel to channel riders to find their soul.

More and more, the indoor bike is less a piece of fitness equipment and more the means to access a range of increasingly personalised workout experiences, both in the club and at home. The result? Those experiences can command a premium – which brings us to point #5.

at-home cycling dj girl

#5 Giving exercise value

In the same way SoulCycle placed a higher value on group fitness by raising the price tag per ride, Peloton raised the stakes at home by elegantly connecting experience and community and making it sticky enough to produce startling engagement – an average of 13 rides per month.

Both brands upped the experience in ways customers cared about. Soul offered a personal and communal high never experienced before, and then shouted to the world through its evangelists and stellar PR. Peloton connected riders to live-streamed NYC rockstars, and each other, and then spent massive marketing dollars obtaining brand omnipresence.

#6 The big four

As with boutique fitness studios, there will be a proliferation of business models, price points, delivery mechanisms, programming ideas and bundled services in the at-home cycling market.

GAFA – Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple – and others are stepping onto our playing field. They are certainly rubbing their hands together in glee as they prepare to stretch out their long arm of end-to-end product, service and delivery to target unmet fitness consumer needs.

The race is on to own the whole end-to-end supply chain of fitness, and the winner is likely to be he with the biggest database, she with the biggest following, they with the deepest data and pockets. Of the US$4.2trn global health and wellness market, we are a small bubble and ripe to be picked.

#7 Sparking innovation

Pricing will always play a part in market growth and at-home cycling is no different. As one of the key levers, wherever there is a pricing delta, a new business model or player will emerge. Cue Echelon Connect.

#8 Clues to the future lie with the trendsetters

Those who say it’s impossible to predict the future would do well to watch the trendsetters, including those who have already shaped the present.

SoulCycle’s 20-person digital content team – tapping senior talent from Mashable, Glamour and Vox Media, along with the joint-venture launch of a talent agency with Equinox – shows it is keeping people at the centre of its brand while at the same time as doubling down on its digital expression. 

Sound by Soul is one such expression, delivering transformative content through music video, audio and transformative events to complement the brand’s studio-based experiences. 

The brand’s mission: to delight in new and unique ways.

#9 Done well, tech is crack for engagement

With the accelerating force of AI, and the ongoing development of VR and AR, fitness will soon be as engaging as PlayStation for a 12-year-old boy. The coaching capacity and ability to enhance the experience will be a dimensional shift in exercising. Tech will help take us to dizzying depths of new sensation.

Our biometrics will directly inform our optimal programming and nutrition plan, while personalised nudges throughout the day will keep us in pursuit of optimal health – a journey currently reserved for the rich and athletic elite.

at-home cycling guy#10 What ceiling?

At-home workouts are just beginning to blow the ceilings off. Clubs and studios are beginning to put digital expressions of their brands into members’ pockets in response to the popularisation of Peloton and all its copycats.

Is at-home fitness here to stay? Absolutely. Is the market big. 100 per cent. At-home options will compete with in-person experiences, at least in terms of frequency.

But it’s not a binary conversation. While some consumers will prefer predominantly physical or digital experiences – many digital communities have zealots as addicted to their cause as those that meet in person – most will converse with the greater ecosystem. They will consume content when and where they choose: physically, digitally and everywhere in between.

Which brings us to point #11…

#11 Fitness is an ecosystem

The fitness customer journey is becoming borderless: physical spaces, digital offerings, online and offline communities, connective elements, crowd-sourced feedback, information and ratings… We’re able to move through our lives engaging with what we need, when we need it.

In the process, although we attach different expectations to different experiences, we remain connected to the experience provided the brand promise is met. We don’t go to a concert to hear the perfect sound production, for example – we go to be in the presence of greatness, to rub shoulders with fellow devotees and to be a part of what unfolds on that day only. Nothing beats being there. Fitness is the same. Sometimes we want the knock-your-socks-off fitness festival. Other times we just need to get 30 minutes of cardio done. We morph accordingly.

Brands need to understand and adapt to this broad customer journey, crafting experiences around all the different variables so they perfectly intersect with the natural rhythm of our lives. Those who eliminate pain points and anticipate future needs will be successful in the future.   

#12 Segments are becoming finely diced

Our desire for hyper-personalisation is being met by finely diced segmentation of products and services. We can now find exactly what we want, exactly how and when we want it. We can choose the community, the instructor, the duration, the intensity, the style, the music, the metrics, the goal, the frequency, the leader board, the chat. Opt in. Opt out. It’s up to us.

ipad app#13 Convenience-plus

Back to basics: Sick kids, taking a vacation or just good old-fashioned ‘I don’t have time’ make working out at home a welcome option. But while that much has been true for decades, convenience is absolutely the currency of now.

The good news for consumers is that we’re in data-led times, with our preferences beginning to drive the products and services that are being served up to us.

#14 Fitness is leveraging star power

Think Mark Walberg and F45, Bieber and Rumble, Mayweather and Boxing, Barry’s Bootcamp and the Beckhams, Chris Hemsworth’s Centr app. 

Expect the same in the digital cycling space as collaborations between databases, delivery mechanisms and stars unite. 

#15 Engaging across the hemispheres

We are now borderless communities, alone-together, engaging on our exact terms with others just like us. Geography is an artificial barrier today.

Personally, my most engaging challenge this year was the MYZONE 5000-MEP January Challenge with my global fitness family. Divided by geography but united in our desire to kick-start the year, we traded on existing friendships, hemisphere rivalry, the transparency of a leader board and the usual flack you’d expect from mates in the chat. I actually won it – predominantly through daily doses of Les Mills On Demand SPRINT, in my office, at home. And I loved it.

Missed part one of the series?

For expert commentary on the latest at-home cycling news, and analysis of what all of this means for the future of indoor cycling, read the first part of the series here

And for more great insights from Emma Barry – this time sharing the secrets of success from the world’s leading boutique studios – you can purchase her book, Customer Engagement in Boutique Studios, here

Home Delivery

To say the at-home indoor cycling market is booming would be an understatement. Ignited by US-based Peloton back in 2013, when it first launched its bike on Kickstarter, the market has gained strong momentum over the last few years in particular. We’re seeing major new players enter the fray and a surge in consumer demand: recent research by Les Mills found that 85 per cent of gym members now also work out at home – and cycling is without doubt one of the disciplines seeing the greatest innovation and interest.

Peloton: Flying high

Let’s start with Peloton which, following months of speculation, in June revealed plans to launch an initial public offering (IPO). The number of shares and the price range for the proposed offering had, at the time of going to print, not yet been determined, but the announcement marks the culmination of a strong 12 months for the brand, which is currently flying high with 1 million-plus users, a US$4bn valuation, sales of US$700m+ in its most recent fiscal year, a predicted 6.2 per cent share of the US gym equipment market by the end of its current fiscal year, and successful roll-outs into the UK and Canada.

Peloton is also now gearing up for entry into its fourth market – Germany – later this year. This will mark the brand’s first foray into regular non-English language instruction, with bespoke content set to be created: German-speaking indoor cycling instructors will be added to Peloton’s roster, at this stage based out of Peloton’s London studio. Hundreds of existing English-language classes will also be made available with German subtitles.

Other plans for Germany include a network of branded retail showrooms in the major cities, allowing consumers to ‘try before they buy’; the bike can also be purchased online, retailing at €2,290 plus a €39 monthly fee to access classes.

Peloton streams classes to more than 1 million members

While this price point may seem ambitious judged purely against the predominantly low-cost German gym market, in fact, the at-home market is a different story, says industry veteran Jon Johnston: “In my experience, the price point for home fitness products has held up better in Germany compared to other markets.“

Kevin Cornils, Peloton’s international managing director, is certainly confident, explaining: “Germany is Europe’s largest fitness market, where more than 10 million people belong to a gym, so it was a natural next step for Peloton.“ [Read our recent interview with Cornils here]

And as Leisure Database’s David Minton observes: “The reality is that Peloton will go everywhere, because it has so much money. In the last six years, it has spent US$1bn. If it spends the same again in the next six years, it could be in at least 100 countries.“

Back to Plan A

That said, things aren’t all rosy for Peloton, which has currently pulled out of the commercial space to focus exclusively on the at-home market – no doubt at least in part the result of its widely-reported lawsuit over music licensing. Observers do, however, predict a return to the commercial space – potentially with a new bike – once the licensing issue has been addressed.

And Peloton has unquestionably struck a chord with today’s convenience-driven, experience-led consumer. Global fitness industry observer Emma Barry comments: “Peloton was not the first to deliver at-home workouts by a long shot, riding the slipstream of greats before it, but this fit-tech unicorn has nevertheless delivered a software-hardware-subscription solution happily touting a 2-foot commute. It has raised the at-home stakes by elegantly connecting experience and community – linking riders to live-streamed NYC rockstars, and each other – and making it sticky enough to produce startling engagement: an average 13 rides per month.

Boutique ventures

Little wonder, then, that Peloton has spawned a whole raft of copycats over the last few years.

Live streaming will be a great way for us to extend our brand to new audiences outside of London – 1Rebel.

Around the same time as Peloton announced its upcoming German launch, US-based Flywheel – with its 42 studios across the US – teamed up with Amazon to take its Flywheel Home Bike to a broader audience. The bike retails on Amazon for US$2,248 (with tablet) or US$1,948 (bike only), with two months’ access to Flywheel’s programming included for free. Although the bike originally launched towards the end of 2017, this new deal with online juggernaut Amazon marks a significant ramping up of Flywheel’s at-home ambitions.

And it’s surely just a matter of time before SoulCycle follows suit. “SoulCycle owner Equinox is looking at every opportunity to expand its reach, says Minton. “The space it has created in New York – with its first hotel alongside an Equinox health club, Rumble, SoulCycle all in the same place – shows the scale of its ambition. It won’t be long before we see Equinox and SoulCycle beamed into the home.

soul cycle at home
It’s surely just a matter of time before SoulCycle launches its own at-home offering

Meanwhile, other innovations are harnessing the power of partnership to come to market, with each partner playing to their respective strengths: equipment manufacturers creating the hardware; operators coming on-board as content providers.

Late last year, Italian equipment manufacturer Technogym announced its entry into the dynamic at-home group exercise marketplace. Its Technogym Live digital platform – home to carefully curated class content – will be accessed through a range of Technogym Live equipment: a new bike, as well as other home equipment including a treadmill and a rowing machine, will all feature a special console. As with Peloton, users will be able to access live-streamed classes as well as a comprehensive on-demand library.

Classes on the Technogym Live platform will be created in collaboration with a specially selected line-up of operator partners – and this is where the boutiques come in again, with the line-up already including Virgin Active Revolution in Milan and London’s 1Rebel, which will be live streaming from its cycling amphitheatre in Victoria.

les mills virtual bike at-home cycling
The Les Mills Virtual Bike was designed for the gym floor, but it’s easy to see how similar bikes could move into the home exercise space.

“We’ve been recording a catalogue of on-demand classes since January, and will be live streaming a number of peak classes when the bike launches, which I expect to be September,“ confirms 1Rebel’s James Balfour. “It will be a great way for us to extend our brand to new audiences outside of London.“

The Les Mills Virtual Bike was designed for the gym floor, but it’s easy to see how similar bikes could move into the home exercise space.

On-demand survival

And it’s easy to see how this market – equipment manufacturers partnering with content providers to create at-home solutions – might continue to grow and evolve.

Already on the market are a couple of products which, at this stage, have been designed with a B2B audience in mind – a way for operators to keep their gym floors competitive in an era where consumer expectations are being shaped by the likes of Peloton. The Les Mills Virtual Bike, created in collaboration with Stages Indoor Cycling, launched late last year, while a prototype of the Wexer Body Bike was showcased at FIBO 2019. Both products allow users to access a range of high quality on-demand virtual classes: the former focusing exclusively on Les Mills RPM, SPRINT and TRIP; the latter offering access to Wexer’s top cycling classes from a range of content providers, as well as complementary floor-based workouts which can be done post-cycle thanks to the bike’s 180-degree swivel screen.

Although currently B2B products, it’s hardly a stretch of the imagination to envisage similar bikes being made available for at-home use in the longer term. Indeed, Wexer Body Bike is already exploring options to allow operators to sell its bike to their members – potentially even white labelled with their own branding – for at-home use. “In addition to creating a new revenue stream for operators, this would allow gyms to extend their ecosystem into members’ homes,” confirms Body Bike CEO Uffe A Olesen.

And this is key to gyms’ survival in the on-demand economy, says HDD Group CEO Kim Hessellund: “Even though we have had time to prepare in Europe, it seems we’re still surprised by our ‘new’ competitors: many gyms still don’t have a clear strategy to compete in this space.

“We need to learn from Peloton’s B2C success and disrupt the disruptors, introducing new digital solutions that allow gym members to exercise anywhere, any time. I’m confident this flexibility would allow operators to offer a total health community in a way the likes of Peloton never could.

“It’s not a binary conversation, confirms Barry. “While some consumers will prefer predominantly physical or digital experiences, most will converse with the greater ecosystem, consuming content when and where they choose – physically, digitally and everywhere in between.

An exercise ecosystem

And why stop at simply selling bikes to members when, just as boutiques such as 1Rebel have already done, other operators could also become content providers themselves?

Minton continues: “I think we’ll see the merging of hardware and software quite quickly over the next two to three years. We’ll see more operators selling ready-made products: buying a bike with a live streaming facility, for example, which they can sell on to members and live stream their own classes. I can see the likes of David Lloyd Clubs doing something like this.

It would certainly be a logical progression, as tech advisor and entrepreneur Bryan K O’Rourke explains: “We’re already seeing McFIT and other gym brands entering the content streaming business, and it’s just getting started. Brands will have to make decisions around how and where they wish to compete, given consumer expectations.

“Cloud computing, quality video production and enterprise platforms are already enabling businesses to deploy content solutions, at scale, more and more economically. You can launch streaming solutions relatively inexpensively. YouTube now has a subscriber model.

“The bottom line is that, if your content concept appeals to a certain segment, you – as a fitness professional or business – can already become a global provider to users directly. Indeed, there are fitness studios already making good money streaming their content to exercisers around the world.

And this will only go up a gear as hardware and software move closer together, confirms O’Rourke: “There will no doubt be increasing competition, as several well-financed entrants are now planning on entering home cycling with equipment and platforms.

“There is certainly enough demand – people expect to have their fitness experience available to them whenever and whenever they choose – but more importantly the economics of delivery are going to become less expensive as well. When it comes to health and fitness as a frictionless service, what we’re already seeing is only the beginning.“

Good & bad news

All that said, Balfour is quick to sound a note of warning. “There’s good and bad news about the at-home market, he says. “There’s a proven model of demand and Peloton has low attrition rates, although that isn’t overly surprising: once you’ve bought a US$2,000+ bike, you’re unlikely to switch to another brand unless you have a terrible experience, and you also tend to keep paying the monthly fees.

“However, as far as I’m aware, Peloton hasn’t yet made a profit. It has dominated the market with a first-mover advantage and spent a lot of money to drive a big valuation – some sources are even touting £8bn as a pre-IPO price – but we shouldn’t be side-tracked by this. Although this trend is here to stay, ultimately nobody knows the value of this market; given we’re talking about US$2,000 pieces of home equipment, it has to be finite.

“It’s also important to recognise that, although I personally believe Peloton risks spending too much to grow, its price tag and consequent retention rates could mean its first mover advantage clinches a ‘winner takes all’ situation. Even if it doesn’t, the market is about to get very crowded.

“For me, the important thing is to be pragmatic. Certainly, in our venture with Technogym, I believe every bike should be profitable, otherwise, it will be a distraction for us. This is where Technogym’s economies of scale, as well as our ability to use our studios as retail outlets to sell the bikes, will come into play.

Welcome the big brands

The crowd to which Balfour alludes is in fact already forming, including more affordable options for those not able to stretch to a Peloton-esque price tag. BKool, for example – a Spanish turbo trainer manufacturer that supplies UCI World Tour cycling teams – already manufactures the BKool Smart Bike, which retails through the likes of Powerhouse Fitness and Sports Tiedje for £1,199, plus £7.99 a month for on-demand workout content.

The bike has no integrated screen – classes are accessed via an app and can be cast onto a TV screen – but once connected to the user’s personal device via Bluetooth, the app takes control of the gearing, automatically adjusting resistance in response to the class profile or route shown on-screen.

“The best way to think about the future of at-home cycling is to forget about cycling altogether.”

More product launches are sure to follow in what’s set to be an increasingly competitive sector – one that now has the attention of the big consumer brands. Says Minton: “The big players have realised it’s all about entertainment in the home, about creating a great at-home experience. You just need to look at the likes of TCV – a lead investor in Peloton’s recent US$550m financing round – which has also invested in brands like Spotify and Netflix. We really are just seeing the start of all of this.“

at-home cycling bike
Flywheel’s home bike is now available on Amazon

Barry agrees: “GAFA – Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple – are rubbing their hands in glee as they prepare to stretch out their long arm of end-to-end product, service and delivery to our consumer. With the accelerating force of AI and ongoing development of VR and AR, fitness will soon be as engaging as PlayStation for a 12-year old boy.

“The best way to think about the future of at-home cycling is to forget about cycling altogether. Think of it as just another service you’re passionate about receiving. Think food. Think fashion. Think human behaviour. Amazon has primed us to expect immediate delivery by drone or robot; Netflix is feeding us intoxicating content based on our preferences; Fortnite has us adventuring off-world with friends. These examples tap the tenets of convenience, hyper-personalisation and community – which brings us back to Peloton.

She concludes: “Moving forward, the coaching capacity and ability to enhance the experience will be a dimensional shift in exercising. Tech will help take us to dizzying heights of new sensation. Our biometrics will directly inform our optimal programming and nutrition plan, while personalised nudges throughout the day will keep us on track. At-home workouts are all set to blow the ceilings off.“

Why health is the future of fitness

“What the fitness industry needs to recognise is that training isn’t about being in a certain location,” says ACTIVIO CEO Moris Lahdo. “Health club membership might work for some people, at certain points in their life, but there are lots of other ways to exercise.

“Fitness and training is about where you are in your life right now, and as an industry we need to acknowledge and address this. We need to follow people throughout their life journey, assuming a broader responsibility: that of getting more people, more active in whatever way is best suited to them at that moment.”

He continues: “Technology isn’t the only answer to this challenge, but it certainly has a big role to play – and the likes of Apple and Google are well aware of this. While the fitness industry is busy looking inwards and focusing on membership sales, these tech giants have identified a bigger opportunity to focus on the preventative healthcare agenda. In the next few years, I expect them to create a platform that will connect everything with everyone – where all you need to manage your health is your smartphone – and this will mark the end for a lot of traditional fitness companies.

“Our industry will be fundamentally disrupted unless we start working smart and working with each other. We need to connect and create a seamless platform for end users – one that educates people about their training, their nutrition, their sleep. One that centres on improving health rather than selling memberships; the latter should come once people have got moving, but it can’t be the starting point.”

Activio App Technology

He adds: “The starting point to getting fit and healthy is a fitness tracker or app with training recommendations: something that gets you off the couch and out for a gentle five -minute walk. Perhaps it’s prescribed to you by your doctor. Perhaps your friends recommend it. Whatever the catalyst, one thing is certain: the gym won’t be the natural first port of call for people who are currently inactive.

“To appeal to these people – and let’s not forget, this is the vast majority of the population – the fitness industry needs to adapt. This is our challenge and this is what we should be talking about, not selling memberships to the 10–15 per cent of already active individuals. If we don’t solve this for ourselves, believe me, Apple and Google will come in and solve it.”

Towards a solution

Lahdo explains: “This is something we’ve prioritised at ACTIVIO. Of course, we have great solutions for health clubs, studios and fitness centres – our roots are in professional sports and it remains our mission to optimise the training experience. In a health club environment, we motivate people to push themselves and achieve great results.

“But that doesn’t mean we can’t make our products relevant to the rest of the population, helping less active people to also achieve great results by taking baby steps.”

He continues: “In Sweden, where ACTIVIO is headquartered, a lot of people are prescribed physical activity by their doctors. That’s great, but technology-wise it’s a very closed system. Now imagine instead a system whereby your activity data is sent up to a cloud, to be shared with whoever it is who’s helping you improve your health – your doctor, your fitness coach, your mentor. This is how ACTIVIO works.


“ACTIVIO also becomes a coach inside your smartphone, recommending exercises and activities to help you towards your goals. To start off, it might prescribe 3 x 5-minute walks each week, telling you to stay in the blue heart rate zone – so just a gentle stroll to get moving. It’s about helping people accept the need to train in the first place, as well as helping them easily understand how to do that – how to live a healthier life.

“We also do a lot of work with schools. Kids are incredibly motivated by our system – even kids who are usually totally sedentary. The moment they put on an ACTIVIO heart rate belt and see their colour-coded gauge on the screen at the front of the room, they start running around to see how high they can get their heart rate. It’s about creating movement and joy at this age. In the end, they may become gym members – but not if you don’t intervene when they’re still children, getting them away from their phones and their tablets and getting them moving.”

He adds: “ACTIVIO is already used by over a million people every month. If we can continue to expand into new markets, and continue to extend our capacity to prescribe, I believe we can help whole populations to become healthier.

“I also believe this is what the whole fitness industry should be doing – connecting different levels and groups in society to encourage movement and health.”

The consumer is king

Even within the health club environment, a key goal for ACTIVIO is helping exercisers realise how their training impacts their overall health, by giving them ownership and understanding of their training data.

Says Lahdo: “ACTIVIO’s mission has always been to optimise the training performance. To this end, one of our key USPs is the way we present training data.

“When you’re under stress – during exercise, for example – the brain finds it harder to process


numbers and figures. Based on this scientific insight, we made a conscious decision to use a simple analogue display for the ACTIVIO system: a gauge that looks a bit like the speedometer in a car, but where colours replace the numbers around the edge. The coach tells you to hit a specific colour zone and you gear your effort level accordingly – and that’s it. You learn how each zone feels, and that’s what’s important.”

This approach is constant across ACTIVIO’s portfolio of products, from the premium, fixed installation to the portable, tablet-based solution to the power solution that wirelessly collects data from indoor bikes. It’s also the approach in the brand new ACTIVIO Next Level platform, which will be launched soon.

What’s equally important about ACTIVIO Next Level is the open nature of the platform. Lah-do explains: “We’re already seeing consumers bringing their own smartphones and wearables into health clubs, and this will only increase over the coming years. They want to be able to use their own device, to wear their choice of heart rate belt or monitor in class. Closed systems will become less and less relevant.

“ACTIVIO Next Level is therefore an open platform that will work with all the major brands of heart rate belt. We will also integrate our solution with Apple Health, GoogleFit, Strava, Runkeeper and so on. If the member wants to use an ACTIVIO belt, great – they will be able to benefit from all the measures we can track, from heart rate and power, to pace and distance through our memory recording and accelerometer technology.

“But belt sales aren’t our priority. We want to be a ‘hub in the club’ that allows for excellent coaching, motivation and education – and where the club is at the heart of that experience – but where the member uses their own tech. They get to choose where their data goes after the workout.

“If we want to help people improve their health, we have to accept that they own their health data.”

Enhancing the experience

He concludes: “Interestingly, adopting this data-based approach also enhances the training experience, which in turn improves member retention.

Activio colour zone
ACTIVIO’s colour-zoned, analogue gauge is simple to read and understand

“Training data can add huge value to the indoor cycling experience too. In cycling classes across the sector, there’s a lot of stuff going on these days to keep people engaged: virtual footage, immersive experiences, real-time inter-club competitions and races. This is all great and will continue to play a big role in the future of indoor cycling, but I believe education is also key. Why should people do CV training?

Why should they cycle? Entertainment is great, but members need to know why they’re doing what they’re doing.

“We also need to add recommendations into what we do. What should be someone’s next workout? How can they progress? And as a gym operator, how can you design progression into your programming each quarter so people feel something is actually happening as a result of their exercise – that they’re making progress?

“Monitoring lies at the heart of all of this – heart rate, power and so on. In itself, it adds to the experience. It makes exercise very engaging when you can see your data in front of you and understand how what you do in your workout can affect it.

“But it’s also about showing someone how they’ve progressed. It’s about showing them how they’ve improved their health.

“If the fitness industry wants to be attractive in the future, it needs to focus on health – on helping people live a healthy lifestyle, and live it for many years.”


A new ACTIVIO Points™ (APS) system awards points to exercisers according to the effort they put in during their workout. This evidence-based system is linked to the ACTIVIO Sport Solution for professional teams.

  • Track and analyse a variety of performance metrics including heart rate, power, cadence, distance, APS™, calories and more.

  • Run fitness tests in class, from FTP to VO2 max. After each test, display the results and upload them for future use – a great way to boost member motivation and track progress over time.

  • Offer team competition mode, leaderboards and gamification to motivate members during exercise – and afterwards, with social media integration allowing members to share their training experiences.

  • Use structured workouts in your classes or let your instructors create their own workouts, which they can share with other instructors in your club. Using Virtual Trainer, club instructors can design their own class profiles – based on heart rate or power – and run those classes on the group exercise screen.

  • OPEN ACTIVIO™ doesn’t tie customers to specific technology: they will be able to use heart rate monitors from all the most popular brands and wearables.

  • A new cloud service will connect to the likes of Strava, Runkeeper, Google Fit and Apple Health.

  • An updated training app will offer memory recording and acceleration features.

  • Developed for future system integrations with modern API.

  • A new instructor education platform offers five different lecture programmes to share the latest science around heart rate training and power (watts) training.

Phillip Mills

What has the emergence of boutique studios meant for the fitness sector as a whole?
As we all know, the fitness market has been disrupted over the last 15 years, in particular by the low-cost operators – these clubs are just getting better and better – and by the boutiques.

Boutiques in particular have really captured the millennial taste and this is key to their success, not least because millennials now account for a huge proportion of the fitness market: Les Mills recently commissioned a new study from Qualtrix – surveying 18,000 people across 22 countries – which found that 79 per cent of people doing gym-type activities are either millennials (those aged up to 37 years) or post-millennials (those aged up to 23 years).

Clubs absolutely have to embrace this market if they want to survive, and that means adapt-ing their offering. Millennials are very different from Baby Boomers and Gen X. In fact, they very consciously don’t want to do what their parents did. Many millennials are therefore bypassing traditional clubs in favour of the boutiques, and it’s vitally important that health club operators realise and respond to this.

Why? Because not only do millennials represent a huge segment of the market, but this is also the age at which habits are formed. The average age of a health club member might be around 40 years old, but our research has found the vast majority of people first join clubs in their 20s; 24 years old is the biggest joining point. Very few people join for the first time after 35 years old, and after the age of 40 the numbers are statistically almost non-existent.

So, you have to get people when they’re in their 20s, or at a push their early 30s – and this is the age group that’s currently being drawn to the boutiques. Our research shows a 5 per cent growth in the number of people doing gym-type activities between 2013 and 2018 – from 28 per cent of the population to 33 per cent – and it’s the boutiques and low-cost club that are benefiting the most.

Only 49 per cent of the market now uses traditional health clubs; the remaining 51 per cent are split across low-cost clubs, boutiques, small local clubs – the Anytime Fitnesses, Jetts and Snaps of this world – and other niches like university and corporate clubs.

And while not all the boutiques are successful – anecdotal evidence suggests around a third are struggling financially – this is still a sector that’s booming. There are now hundreds of thousands of boutique studios around the world and they’re enjoying share of wallet as well as share of market: the average monthly expenditure per member at a traditional club is US$52; at a boutique studio, that figure rises to US$111.

Understandably, then, there’s been growing concern among operators that traditional clubs could become an anachronism. I don’t accept this. For me, all it means is that traditional clubs have to evolve.

Les Mills the trip
Immersive class THE TRIP will be “the next big thing“, says Mills

And have traditional clubs evolved?
They have started to, yes, with a number of operators creating boutique-style spaces in their clubs. In the UK, for example, David Lloyd Leisure has launched Blaze, while the Brazilian mar-ket leader – the BioRitmo/Smartfit group – has created a few different styles of in-club boutique. Meanwhile, in New Zealand – following the pre-vious launch of our millennial-targeted, in-club cycling studio Chain – our Les Mills clubs have a couple of millennial-style innovations set to come out this year: a boxing/running class and a functional circuit similar to the F45 model.


It’s these styles of class – in-club boutique offer-ings – that will help traditional clubs to compete with the boutiques. But they have to be done well. It needs to be an authentic environment: a small area with a community feel. Crucially, the programming and the teachers have to be real-ly great. If you look at the successful boutiques – Barry’s Bootcamp, SoulCycle and Flywheel, for example – they’ve created some really cool class-es which are also incredible workouts, and they’re led by amazing instructors.

This is a key point, because it’s in this area – instructors – that traditional clubs have done badly over recent times. Clubs have been allowed to age in this respect: US$22 is still the average instructor fee paid per class in a traditional club, which is pretty much the same as it was in the 1980s. Why would any good instructor settle for that when the average fee for teaching a boutique class is US$50–$100?

Of course, there are some really good hobbyist in-structors out there – people who are doing it for love and who are great at what they do. But this isn’t a model that will bring a new generation of rockstar instructors into traditional clubs. These operators have to start paying instructors more. They need great instructors to deliver great classes if they’re to stand any chance of compet-ing with the boutiques – and the low-cost clubs for that matter.

And there’s no point saying you’ll rely on virtual group exercise. It’s true that the leading virtual classes are taught by great instructors, and it can be a very powerful tool for traditional clubs in off-peak times. But it’s live classes that build a sense of community. It’s instructors who build relationships and drive retention. Plus, most of the low-cost clubs offer virtual classes now. Traditional clubs need to up their game when it comes to live group exercise.

What’s the best place for clubs to start?
Clubs need to look at how and where to create cool boutique areas within their facilities, and the cycling studio is the easiest place to start. Cycle classes deliver the highest profit per square foot

– the number of people you can fit into an area is higher than for any other activity – and most clubs have a cycling studio already. However, in many cases they’ve been allowed to die, running just two or three classes a day.

Meanwhile, cycling is a huge – and growing – category in boutiques; even in traditional clubs, where cycling is done well, anything up to 30 per cent of members will include it in their routines.

ride high rebel Victoria
1Rebel Victoria has done something incredible. It’s the single best group exercise studio in the world

And that’s because anyone can do it, it’s a high motivation activity, and it offers great results. There’s also a growing body of research coming out of the big global research institutes show-ing how interval training on a bike can boost metabolism and weight loss, change our DNA to make muscles fitter and healthier, and even im-prove the cellular health and functionality of our muscles as we age.

So, while running, boxing, HIIT, yoga and so on are all opportunities for traditional clubs when it comes to in-house boutique spaces, definitely the most logical place to start would be upgrading existing cycling studios: upgrading the décor, the AV, the programming, the instructor quality by paying for rockstars… If you have great content, great teachers and a great space, you become competitive again.

Can you offer a few examples of great cycling studios that might act as inspiration?
There are lots of great examples out there. Décor-wise SoulCycle is great, and it has some very good instructors. The workout isn’t for me though, with too much high-speed stuff out of the saddle. In terms of the workout, I love Flywheel – it’s more athletic, more about interval training. Space Cycle in Shanghai is very cool too, as are some of the immersive studios we’ve worked with around the world: TMPL in New York City and Pure Fitness in Hong Kong, for example.

But in terms of overall experience, my two current favourites are London’s 1Rebel Victoria and the new TRIP studio in our Les Mills Auckland club. 1Rebel Victoria has done something incredible. It’s the single best group exercise studio in the world – a truly amazing experience – and it’s setting the standard for clubs around the globe. [Read more about 1Rebel Victoria in our interview with 1Rebel co-founder James Balfour.]

Meanwhile, in Auckland, we have 100 bikes in a theatre-style studio that’s been designed by some hot young architects. The studio is dark, illuminated from the front by a concave screen – 20m wide by 3m high – on which we run our immersive cycling classes, THE TRIP. We’re now on the 16th release of THE TRIP, with US$500,000 investment going into the production of each class, and it’s a truly addictive experience. I do it three times a week!

Tell us a bit more about THE TRIP…
When we first launched THE TRIP, we were adamant that the screens had to be huge, but re-cently we’ve realised it can still work on smaller screens. If you have a 4×3 mosaic screen – that is, 12 smaller screens joined together – the experience can still be immersive for up to 35 people. Even on regular 3m-wide virtual screens, it’s great.

Les mills cycling
Cycling isn’t only booming in boutiques. Even in traditional clubs, up to 30 per cent of members take part

This has helped THE TRIP to explode: since we launched these new formats and virtual TRIP three months ago, we’ve gone from just a handful of studios around the world to over 100 installations sold. I have absolute confi-dence that it’s going to be the next big thing, available in thousands of clubs over the next few years. It leapfrogs any club’s studio ahead of even the best boutiques.

Finally, let’s chat about Peloton and the impact this has had on the market…
The at-home fitness market is a huge category and always has been, right back to the days of Jane Fonda workout videos. Our research shows that 83 per cent of those who have gym mem-berships also exercise at home.

What’s happening now is simply that the technology is evolving, facilitating products like Peloton and Zwift. There’s a lot of content streamed online too, although here it’s often a case of quantity over quality – there’s a lot of rubbish out there. But overall, the range of at-home exercise options is growing fast.

In terms of Peloton specifically, it’s doing very well as a business and I love what it’s doing for cycling as a whole. But it is quite a simple prod-uct in terms of its content, simply streaming live classes out of a studio. Some of its teachers are quite good, but generally, I’d have to be honest and say the classes aren’t fabulous compared to other virtual classes that have been well choreo-graphed, filmed in great locations using multiple camera angles and top cameramen. You can get bored after a while


So, what’s driving Peloton’s success? The tech is good, but it isn’t the live streaming that’s ultimately driving its appeal: only a small proportion of Peloton users take part in these classes, with most going back into the pre-recorded library to pick their favourites. Lots of people just use the Peloton app on their own bikes.

What Peloton has done absolutely brilliantly – and the same goes for SoulCycle – is an amazing marketing job. Both these brands have succeed-ed in bringing bikes back to the fore, so I really want to see them do well. They’ve done great things for the category. Really, the whole indus-try can now benefit from what they’ve done.

The future of indoor cycling

Let’s set the scene: what is digital fitness, and what’s driving this trend?
Put very simply, digital fitness is fitness that’s enabled by technology.

At the heart of it, it’s about choice and convenience. In today’s increasingly digital world, consumers want – and expect to be able – to engage with fitness experiences when and where they want. It may be that they’d like to get to a health club or gym, but in practice there can be so many barriers that stand in the way of this happening. We have to look at ways of making fitness easier to consume, and the only cost-effective way of doing this is by embracing technology.

Importantly, this technology is already out there.

“Technology should never be the strategy in itself” – Paul Bowman

What does digital fitness look like in practice?
At the moment, digital fitness is predominantly taking the shape of third party apps and online fitness providers. These providers have identified and seized the opportunity quicker than traditional fitness providers, which is of course a challenge to the health club model as we know it. It’s why many operators see technology as a threat.

But it needn’t be this way: in fact, technology hands operators the tools they need to strengthen and future-proof their businesses. It allows health clubs stay relevant in a digital world, both by extending their appeal to a broader audience and by better serving existing members.

Let’s look at this specifically from an indoor cycling perspective. Say someone walks into your club and they’re interested in having a go at cycling; they might even have been into cycling before, but not been on a bike in a while. Your live instructor-led classes might be a bit intimidating for them at first – all those regulars on their favourite bikes. However, they’ll probably feel a lot more comfortable doing a virtual or live streamed class; we have a lot of data to show how these classes act as confidence-building feeders into live classes.

Even better, imagine having bikes on the gym floor, away from the studio space altogether, each with personal screens on which you’re able to run a live streaming channel. By streaming high quality indoor cycling classes direct from your studio – which could be at any club in your estate – you’re giving members a chance to take part with no sense of pressure on them at all. You’re also giving everyone access to your very best instructors.

With our technology, all of this is already possible.
Even better, our data shows there’s only a 15 per cent drop-off between levels of attendance at live streamed classes versus live classes, so there’s huge scope for operators to play with the balance – live, live streaming, virtual – to create the perfect schedule that most cost-effectively delivers the experience members want.

If you can live stream between clubs, can you live stream into people’s homes?
Absolutely – and of course, given the success of Peloton, it isn’t too much of a leap to see how all this could translate to the at-home fitness market.

Operators could quite easily partner with a supplier to sell bikes for at-home use – they don’t need to be as robust, or therefore as expensive, as commercial bikes – and live stream classes run by their very best instructors for digital members to do at home. Even if you only had one or two amazing trainers, you could get them into every living room.
It would be a win-win-win scenario: giving consumers the convenience they want, extending the reach (and revenue streams) of a club, and helping the supplier sell more bikes.

You mention digital members. What do you mean by this?
Digital members can be digital-only – people who only ever tap in to your expertise and programming remotely – or hybrid club/digital members, who still want to come to the club for the social aspect, but for whom technology offers the convenience they need to be active more regularly.

The key to digital memberships is the mobile phone – and specifically, an app such as Wexer Mobile. The club remains the hub of expertise, advice, content creation and (where relevant) in-person experiences; the phone provides the means to tap in to all of this away from the club.


It’s possible to programme anything into the app, so clubs can remotely deliver highly personalised training plans to groups or individuals. You might want to design cycling conditioning programmes for serious cycling enthusiasts, for example, to complement all the Spinning they’re doing. You could prescribe specific classes you want them to do (in the club or elsewhere via live streaming). You could programme an actual ride for them to go out and do on the road. And all of this can be managed centrally, with the club/trainer setting tasks and monitoring what members have completed. Wexer also syncs with Strava and other GPS-based trackers, so all data is in one place.

The phone is also the driver of personalisation for hybrid members within the club. Imagine walking into a club that, thanks to all the data it’s gathered through its app, knows you, what you like doing, what other associated needs you might have. Add in a few beacons and this then translates into personalised recommendations popping up on your phone as you walk into the club, pointing you towards a cycling class that’s about to start, for example, or a special offer on cycling apparel. It’s a great way to better serve the member and simultaneously drive revenue within the club.

Future city wexer
Intelligent Cycling lets instructors design their own programmes; the system then overlays virtual footage

Are there any other cycling-related innovations you’d like to mention?
Until now, most virtual cycling involved footage that the instructor had to design their workouts around. Now, we’re starting to see technology emerging that actively supports and engages the instructor.

Intelligent Cycling’s market-leading technology, available on the Wexer platform, is a great example of this. Instructors go to the portal to design their own programmes – the exact intervals they want to do – with the system then using AI to overlay virtual footage that directly correlates with the intensity of the workout: hit a tough interval, for example, and you’ll see the track suddenly rise ahead of you into an uphill climb.

It puts the instructor right back at the heart of things.

Intelligent Cycling can be used not only as a backdrop to a live class, but can also be saved and scheduled to run as a virtual class at any time. It allows for a more personal approach to virtual fitness, whereby people can choose to do classes designed and recommended by their favourite instructor.

What’s your advice for operators who haven’t yet gone digital – how should they start this process?
Ultimately my advice is: just start. Operators who don’t embrace digital opportunities risk being left behind.
However, don’t just ‘go digital’ without working out how it sits within your overall business strategy. Look at what you want to achieve, then look at what tech is available to enable this.

For example, if your goal is to drive revenue by attracting new members, your first toe in the water might be something like the Wexer Web Player – a password-protected portal that allows people to log in and do virtual classes from home, sampling your offering before they commit.

Digital transformation is about being relevant to every member – and every potential end user

If you want to add value to members using your facilities, enhancing your in-club group exercise offering can be a great idea. There are over 900 classes on our virtual class platform – everything from indoor cycling to HIIT, pilates to pre- and post-natal to golf conditioning – so there’s something for everyone. It’s a highly cost-
effective way to supplement your live classes and deliver a high quality, round-the-clock group exercise timetable.

My main piece of advice is this: technology should never be the strategy in itself. Digital transformation is about being relevant to every member, and every potential end user, by harnessing the delivery channels they choose to use. These channels might be physical or they might be technological, but you need to assess every single option and make the
appropriate choices for your target market.

What do you see as the future of indoor cycling?
There’s a lot of data to show that loyalty within indoor cycling – indeed, within group exercise in general – is to the individual instructor. The future of indoor cycling will therefore be about finding ways to harness the power of influencers – the superstar instructors with large numbers of passionate followers.
That might mean offering virtual classes led by world-leading names in the field of cycling. It might mean operators filming classes led by their own group cycling superstars and live streaming these across their estate, maximising the reach and impact of their best people. It might mean more technology evolving that, like Intelligent Cycling, engages the trainer in the
cycling experience.

The details will vary from club to club, but one thing will be consistent: cycling will be influencer-
led, and technology will enable this.

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