Four-Minute ShapeLog Introduction
ShapeLog is a funded startup with a team in Ann Arbor and Chicago. We make business-to-business technology solutions for fitness equipment manufacturers – the people who make all the machines at the gym – and commercial fitness clubs.
Our patented hardware is not a wearable device: it easily slips onto the strength equipment at the gym and automatically tracks every workout.
Since November 2016 we have been continuously streaming strength training performance data off all of the equipment in a commercial club. That means many of simultaneous users doing all sorts of workouts for almost a year. At this point we have one of the largest and best strength training data sets in the world.
We collect a lot of data – about a million data points per workout. When mention these million data points to people they’re usually unimpressed and assume this is overkill. We share your healthy skepticism because nobody wants to swim in a mountain of raw data.
Doing something valuable means turning all of that data into services and products people love. Our big data set can only be valuable if we do awesome things with it. The good news is: we can.
Here are three valuable uses for ShapeLog data:
- Wicked-high retention rates through automatic authentication. We can identify each individual user by their data. Most people don’t understand this concept when they hear it for the first time, so let me repeat: We can identify each individual user by their data. So we don’t have to ask users to log in or authenticate during the workout. This is a game changer for adoption rates. For some context: 5% of the people who get on a connected treadmill log in and track their workout. By removing the need to authenticate, we take adoption from 5% to 95%.
- Evidence-based programming at scale. Once you track enough people for long enough, it becomes really obvious what the successful people are doing, and easy to reverse-engineer that journey for everyone who wants to be like them. Strength training is intimidating – our ability to continuously let you know what to do next is transformative for many. The geeky way to say this is: providing evidence-based programming at scale. The buzzword phrase is “coaching with artificial intelligence”.
- We swim in the raw data so you don’t have to. We’re processing the raw data into meaningful, processed strength data and serving it up through a world-class API. So you can use the data in your preferred environment. That’s the thing we’re most proud and excited about.
A lot of people have heard of an API, but don’t really know what that means. Here are three examples of how we’re using the ShapeLog API:
- App for Trainers. This is a really simple iOS app that allows trainers to design and run group strength workouts from their phone. Tracking and reporting happens automatically because the strength data is pulled from the ShapeLog API.
- Tools for OEMs and Clubs. We’re making a business intelligence tool for commercial fitness clubs to make better asset management decisions and run more targeted marketing campaigns. The machine and member utilization rates are pulled from the ShapeLog API.
- Coaching App for Strength Training Beginners. We’re working on a coaching app for strength training beginners that uses real data to create bespoke fitness experiences.
The list of potential uses for the data goes on. We’re not sure any of these are the killer app, and can’t wait to see what others like you might do with ShapeLog data within your ecosystem. There are some beautiful, unique solutions out there that we admire and hope for the opportunity to make them even better.
One more important note:
We’re licensing our strength sensor boards to fitness equipment manufacturers interested in offering these connected strength experiences to their customers. We provide reference designs for retrofit and first fit solutions and can provide finished commercial hardware when asked.
We’re still relatively unknown, but I believe you’ll see us emerge as a foundational technology working with a lot of companies you’ve heard of in the years ahead.