Apple Fitness+ makes a compelling case for the Apple Watch
At-home fitness platforms have boomed during COVID-19 and Apple Fitness+ is no exception.
The service launched in December 2020 and, as the ongoing pandemic kept several countries around the world locked down, it took off as a way to stay active from home. Apple Fitness+ is a fitness subscription service that you can add to your Apple Watch for $100 per year or $13 per month to gain access to a wide variety of on-demand fitness courses.
While it has its pros and cons, Fitness+ is still an attractive service for Apple Watch owners and people looking to find an easy way to start working out.
What do you need to get started?
The three essential items you need to get started are an Apple Watch Series 3 or newer, an iPhone and a subscription to Apple Fitness+ or the Apple One Premier bundle.
That said, with this setup, you’re locked into doing yoga, core training, high-intensity interval training (HIIT), dance and mindful cooldowns. You’ll likely want a yoga mat for a lot of these exercises as well. This is still an excellent starting place and for people like me who are looking for simple ways to stretch and stay active.
If you want to take things to the next level, you can add weights, a treadmill, a stationary bike or a rowing machine for more intense workouts. This also means you could bring your iPhone and Apple Watch with you to the gym (if it weren’t for COVID-19) and do Apple Workouts using the equipment there.
This makes the service surprisingly versatile since it’s not locked down to specific exercise hardware. As long as you’re using an Apple Watch, you’re good to go. That said, you are still tied to using an Apple Watch, and arguably, a lot of these workouts could be done as effectively without any stat tracking.
What’s the app like?
You can open the Fitness+ service through the Apple Fitness app on iPad, iPhone and Apple TV. You can also stream the service using AirPlay 2 to compatible TVs. Fitness+ is located in the centre tab between your regular Fitness data and the app’s social features on the iPhone. On iPad and Apple TV, the Fitness App is only the Fitness+ section.
The main screen presents you with all the workout categories along the top. Below are the ‘Time to Walk’ shows, which are an enjoyable way to s queeze some fitness into a short walk.
If you keep scrolling, you’ll start to see some workouts related to what you’ve already done, what’s new to the service this week and exercises that might be outside your comfort zone. 4
There are also themed workouts like a category for beginners and another more topical one for Black History Month.
The other two notable categories are ‘Trainers’ and ‘My Workouts.’ The Trainer category lets you see all the workouts that each trainer has done if you’ve taken a liking to a specific instructor’s style. The My Workouts zone is where you can save classes for later....