After a few quarters break in excitement we’re back in action, starting the next phase of our journey. During the first phase of Fit for Green we created a platform to communicate the results of Fitness Generated electricity electronically. The platform we developed consists of a Cloud application that is accessible through the Fit for Green website and an in-gym kiosk for people to login before they exercise so that Fit for Green can record their progress. While this is a nice start, and we were able to install it in 3 gyms, its not something we ever expected to scale very well.
This next phase is one where we will address 3 major issues; price, installation requirements, and user convenience. The price was just too high when Fit for Green and the third party retrofits were added in. I won’t go into specifics on costs but I can confidently say that it was frequently a deterrent to adoption. The installation was also difficult because an electrician had to be brought in to connect conversion equipment to the gym’s grid. Lastly, the extra step of having to go to a kiosk before working out was just too much to ask of our users. Not to say that these were all of our challenges but they were definitely 3 of the top 5.
There are some changes to the architecture, a new partner, and new integrated platform. Our partner will provide the equipment that generates electricity minus the console. Fit for Green will complete the units by integrating the Fit for Green console, bringing the electricity generation concept front and center. The finished product will be a gym machine that generates power and is comparable in cost to other like gym equipment.
This short video will show what our partner is providing. The other parts will be shown in various states with subsequent posts:
Video: Fit for Green Base Equipment
Time for a few quick updates on recent progress at Fit for Green. The two most exciting recent updates are: the completion of our installation at Sacramento State University and our attendance at this week’s NIRSA (National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association ) trade show in Las Vegas.
The installation at Sacramento State University started in November and we just finished up last week after a long delay in the procurement of the necessary displays. We partnered with ReRev again during this install. Read more
I had the pleasure of speaking to with Mike Taggett, the President of Hyman Dynamo, earlier this week. Human Dynamo is headquartered in Hurricane Utah. Mike like all of the other innovators in this space, shares our passion for fitness-generated electricity. Over the years Mike has designed several different machines including; Rocket Chair, Team Dynamo, and FireWheel. There is plenty of information available about these machines on his website. His most recent work has been around trying to tie electricity from the machine directly into the grid Read more
SportsArt, a gym equipment manufacturer out of Tainan City, Taiwan, is a pioneer in the world of Fitness-generated electricity. Their system, built around their own line of gym floor equipment, is a first of its kind. Customer can add any mixture of elliptical trainers, incumbent bikes, or upright bikes to a single electric generating system. A single system will support up to 10 pieces of equipment. Read more
Rhymebus, a company out of Taichung City, Taiwan, is a manufacturer of electronic components for leading gym cardio equipment. Today they are primarily focused on AC Motor Drives for Treadmills but what they have on the horizon is what interests us most. Read more
The Green Revolution is a cardio equipment retrofit company out of Ridgefield Connecticut. They retrofit spin bikes so that the bikes can create DC power. They then feed that DC power into a central grid-tied inverter so that the created energy can be converted into utility grade electricity and consumed by the gym utilities in order to reduce the gyms power consumption from their utility company. The Green Revolution is unlike the ReRev solution in that it has a mechanical element that is used to convert the kinetic energy from the flywheel of the spin bike into electricity. Read more
When Fit for Green began one of the first things on the agenda was to do all the research we could on leaders in the space and very quickly we found and focused on ReRev. ReRev is at the top in terms of number of fitness-generated electricity installations, solution feasibility, and media attention. They are an innovator and the leader in the US market. Because of this our first ever Fit for Green business trip was to meet with Hudson Harr and team at ReRev in St. Petersburg Florida. Read more
Last June Fit for Green sold their very first green monitoring system. The system was sold to The Green Initiative Fund (TGIF) at University of California Irvine (UCI) and was installed at the Anteater Recreation Center (ARC). TGIF is a student fund focused exclusively on the funding of student nominated green university projects. To fulfill our obligation under that agreement Fit for Green will be co-sponsoring an event for students so that they may become familiar with the project. Read more
This is the million dollar question when it comes to fitness-generated electricity, as it is with most new technology. People want to know how much it costs and how long before it pays itself off. Sadly, if you are waiting for a payoff from the power, that you won’t be buying from the electric company, you may have a long wait. Read more
Let me start by saying this is a tough number to derive for many reasons and that we will attempt to get as close as possible based on some known calculations that begins with a top down analysis of the US gym equipment market. The worldwide gym equipment market is then estimated by multiplying the US market by a factor of 10. Ideally we”ll get to a more accurate number in the future but this is where our research has led us so far. Read more