How to Develop a Personal Trainer App Like 7 Minute Workout

Millions of people choose wellness and healthy lifestyle, and for many of these individuals, going to the gym is a norm. But what if a person goes on vacation for two weeks and doesn’t want to miss training? Or there’s no gym nearby? Does it mean that being fit is a pipe dream? Not really. There’s a simple solution for these problems: personal training apps. 

Fitness studios and popular trainers invest in developing personal trainer apps, and the market for these apps is constantly growing. Nike, Adidas, and Kayla Itsines already have training apps that help users stay fit and healthy. Moreover, according to Grand View Research, the market for fitness apps will increase from $2.4 billion in 2018 to $10.9 billion in 2026.

Today, we’ll consider one of the leaders in this market – the Johnson & Johnson Official 7 Minute Workout® App. There are a lot of applications for 7-minute trainings, but only Johnson & Johnson’s was created by the inventor of this type of training: Chris Jordan, a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist and the Director of Exercise Physiology at Johnson & Johnson’s Human Performance Institute.

How did Official 7 Minute Workout by Johnson & Johnson become so popular?

Fitness publications and coaches have long talked about the benefits of short interval training. But until 2013, there was no scientific evidence of its effectiveness. In 2013, Chris Jordan published research in ACSM’s Health & Fitness Journal that proved the effectiveness of high-intensity circuit training using body weight and the main benefits of this workout.

That report was the result of lots of research and led to the creation of an app for Johnson & Johnson. Shortly after this report was published, Johnson & Johnson built a revolutionary app for short personalized trainings. After that, everyone and their uncle started creating clones of the 7 Minute Workout app, getting good revenue from them.

What is a 7-minute workout and how does the official app work?

The Johnson & Johnson Official 7 Minute Workout App has more than 3 million downloads on the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store and is available in more than 230 countries. With this app, users can access 72 exercises and 22 workouts that differ in complexity and duration, so users can find a suitable program for any level of training.

7 minute workout app

A fitness trainer app includes five main components:

1. Aerobic and resistance exercises. A combination of aerobic and resistance exercises allows users to build a balanced exercise program that benefits their health and fitness in the most effective way.

2. High intensity. High-intensity exercises allow users to create workout programs that take less time. The more intense your exercise, the less time you need to do it to achieve the desired results.

3. Exercise order. Programs are organized in a specific order to spread the load across different muscle groups.

4. Minimal rest. The order of exercises сonsistently distributes the load to different muscle groups and allows you to shorten the rest time between exercises, reducing your overall training time.

5. Bodyweight only. Since these workouts require the least amount of equipment possible, they can be done almost anywhere.

Nevertheless, many skilled experts note that you can only achieve the best results if you repeat the program two or three times in a row so your body will have time to properly increase metabolism and burn enough calories.

Read also: How to Develop a Diet and Nutrition App: Main Features and Useful Development Tips

The main features of the 7 Minute Workout app and how to implement them in your own app

Personalization

There are several ways to bring your mobile application closer to the concept of personal trainers. Using these methods, an app can learn to replace a human trainer who adjusts workouts depending on abilities and preferences.

  • Questionnaire 

The first (and a very simple) method is to create a welcoming questionnaire that asks for basic information like weight, height, level of physical activity, and type of sports (run, yoga, cardio training, meditation) . For convenience, add different units of measurement, such as kilograms and pounds. Sworkit, for example, picks one of more than 300 workouts based on a user’s needs and physical abilities. 

questionnaire

  • Smart Workout

7 Minute Workout allows users to like or dislike fitness exercises and asks them how difficult it was to complete a workout. This information defines the contents of the next workout and the frequency of certain exercises. 

Smart Workout is a feature of 7 Minute Workout that forms the most appropriate training for users according to their level of preparation and their preferences. At the end of a workout, the application lets users rate the difficulty of the exercises and indicate which they preferred.

Based on this feedback, the algorithm calculates the optimal balance of exercises and rest intervals for each user and plans more effective future workouts. There are about 1,000 different training combinations.

smart workout

There are two ways you can teach your app to form workouts that fulfil the personal needs of every user. Of course, you can write an algorithm for building trainings by yourself. But if you aren’t a fan of the do-it-yourself approach, you can use free or paid algorithms from marketplaces like Algorithmia.

  • Custom workouts

For a highly personalized experience, the 7 Minute Workout app also allows users to create customized workouts with their favorite exercises, convenient intervals between exercises, and a set number of cycles. 7 Minute Workout by Workout Apps has this functionality. 

custom workout

Synchronization with wearable devices

Wearable devices are definitely on a roll. According to Statista, in 2018, global shipments of fitness and activity tracking gadgets totaled 172.2 million devices, bringing revenue of $26.43 billion. 

Read also: Latest Technologies for Health and Fitness App Development

Synchronizing an app with a fitness trackers and smartwatches makes it easier to monitor the efficiency of exercises and collect user data including heart rate, pulse, calories burned, and number of reps. 

There are a plethora of tools for integrating applications with wearables. Garmin, Fitbit, Withings, and TomTom provide APIs for integrating their products with applications. Apple and Google work hard to build ecosystems with their Google Fit and HealthKit, which act as hubs for consolidating data from any activity tracker and health and fitness application. There are also operating systems like watchOS for Apple Watch and Wear OS for Android smartwatches.

Workout browsing

Some successful applications allow users to browse and pick workouts by themselves. For this to be useful, your application should have thoughtful categorization. For instance, Nike has a great browsing feature where users can choose a workout based on required equipment, muscle group, workout type, and workout length. 

Workouts browsing

Timer

The timer is one of the basic functions of the 7 Minute Workout app, since the very idea of a 7-minute workout is about scrupulously calculating exercise time and rest intervals.

To implement a timer in an Android app, you can use the CountDownTimer class; for iOS, you can use NSTimer.

timers in workout apps
Video player

Of course, you can use pictures and text descriptions of exercises in your application. But to make your app look really cool, guide your users with high quality video explanations. The 7 Minute Workout app skipped the shortcuts and implemented a video player.

To implement a media player in an Android app, you can use the Android MediaPlayer APIs. With this technology, your app will be able to play video and audio files in the filesystem or over the network.

For applications running on iOS devices, you should use AVKit and AVFoundation.

Achievements 

For the sake of motivation, some developers implement an achievements feature in their personal training applications. For instance, the app called Seven, which was listed as an Editor’s Choice by both Google Play and the App Store in 2019, offers colorful badges for completing certain tasks. The idea of using gamification tactics is one of the latest trends in this industry. 

Training calendar

Implementing a training calendar will help users track their progress and stay motivated. 7 Minute Workout by a startup 7M Fitness has a fitness planner that allows users to see how many daily workouts they’ve completed, how long they’ve trained, and how many calories they’ve burned on a particular day. 

Read also: How to Create a Calendar or Implement One in Your App

training calendar

Voice control

Voice control makes e-health fit applications more convenient by allowing users to pause and resume trainings, switch between exercises, and control music playback using only their voice. If all these actions can be performed using voice commands in an application, users won’t distract from doing sports.
To make voice control possible, your software development company can integrate Siri for iOS or Google Assistant for Android.

Read also: How To Integrate Siri in a Third-Party App

Music

7 Minute Workout allows users to listen to music during trainings. This is a great feature for those who can barely imagine an exercise routine without their favorite song on their headphones.

The easiest way to implement a music player in an app for iPhones is to use the AVAudioPlayer class, which is part of the AVFoundation Framework. For Android mobile platform, you can refer to the Android Media API. Or you can integrate your application with Apple Music and Google Play Music, or with Spotify. For instance, Sworkit has a Music tab where users can listen to Sworkit Radio or Sworkit’s playlists on Spotify and Apple Music.

ui/ux design for music feature in personal trainer apps

What business model is the best for a personal trainer app?

The commercial success of Kayla Itsines’ Sweat app, which brought Kayla $17 million in 2017, became an inspiration for others. In the first quarter of 2019, the revenue from apps in the Health & Fitness category reached $385 million globally, according to Apptopia

Some professionals who create fitness apps complain about the high cost of attracting users to their healthcare mobile services. However, the number of apps in this niche is constantly growing. If you want to try your luck at creating a personal trainer app, here are top practices of how to monetize it.

As with many mobile applications, the creators of applications like 7 Minute Workout typically choose one of three basic monetization models (or combine them).

Paid app

A paid app means that a user has to pay before installing your app. In practice, this model doesn’t work so well. The main reason is that there are too many free direct competitors floating around the app stores.

For example, one of the most popular 7-minute workout apps, 7 Minute Workout Challenge, was paid at the very beginning. At that time, it had 28 downloads per day on average. Then its creator, Stuart Hall, decided to make it free. The result was mind-blowing: the app was downloaded 216,00 times in only three days, which is about 72,000 times a day.

The 7 Minute Workout app by 7 Min Fitness has a separate app called 7 Minute Workout  Pro, which is an enhanced ad-free version. The Sweat app is free to download, but users can’t sign up and start training without purchasing a subscription. A yearly subscription costs $119.99, while a monthly one costs $19.99. Users can also buy a subscription for three months for $55.

If you’re sure you’ll be able to attract enough users to a paid app, then game on. 

Freemium

The Seven app offers a basic set of workouts and features and suggests that users buy the pro version, which includes chats with personal trainers, more than 200 additional exercises, and personalized weekly workout plans. The pro version costs $9.99 a month or $59.99 a year, and the purchase of a yearly subscription comes with a 7-day trial period. 

Ads

Old-fashioned ads remain a popular way to make money from apps. Apps like P4P 7 Minute Workout and Cardiio combine ads with elements of other monetization models. They offer users in-app purchases including for removing ads, getting additional exercise packs, and upgrading to pro versions.

Personal fitness trainer apps are a rising trend. If you’re trying to catch the wave and enter this growing industry, the main things to focus on are choosing the right business strategy and creating an outstanding product. For saving budget and better management, you can hire an outsourcing company for native app development. 

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