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Poster for app

Context

 

A study conducted to understand the daily exercise patterns of over a million people who ran over 350 million km in a global social network of runners over a period of five years shows that exercise is “socially contagious”.

Background insights

About one-in-five Americans use a smart watch or fitness tracker

Pew Research Center, 2019

Coronavirus creates a boom in digital fitness

BBC, 2020

Exercising with a friend can influence how hard you work out 

Independent (UK), 2017

woman using her smartwatch
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Challenge

Sticking to a fitness routine isn't easy, even for the most committed fitness enthusiast. Even the best-planned plans get hindered by life: Work, family, sicknesses, lack of motivation... while some of them are expected, many of them are not. While we cannot control everything, how can we make sure that our users are motivated to put in their maximum effort to stick to their workout routines?

How can we keep our users motivated to stick to their workout routines? 

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Hypothesis

Having friends, family members, or strangers encourage you as you work out can help you meet your goals and even exceed them. So I believe that adding features like the ability to join friends for a run, sharing your progress after a workout, and having local fitness events would keep users motivated to work out regularly.

woman smiling at each other after they workout
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Research

“For most people, it’s difficult to stay consistent with workout routines, but having a certain group there waiting for you provides you with the motivation and accountability everyone needs to be successful,” says Michael Yabut, Training Manager and National Trainer at TITLE Boxing Club International, LLC, who agrees that members of group fitness programs are less likely to skip workouts, which helps keep them on track.

Research insights

“Working out with a crowd carries a plethora of intertwined benefits that include enhancing consistency, duration, motivation, conversation, and inspiration”

 Dian Griesel, Ph.D., co-author of TurboCharged

90.6% of people say that having a friend to accompany them during workouts will keep them motivated to exercise regularly

207 survey responses

Survey insights 90.6% yes

Survey shared with local fitness groups and college students

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Users

I interviewed users who were using various fitness apps to determine why they use a Fitness app and why they prefer one app over the other. Based on the results, I identified three main user groups; people who like to gamify things and compete with others,  social butterflies who like to workout with friends or even strangers, and people who like to track their progress as they workout.

 

Understanding the user’s motivations and their problems with their existing apps helped me identify opportunities and create user-centered designs.

persona 1
persona 2

The Gamer

Keep track of your calories!

persona 3

The Social butterfly

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Campaign

I asked people about their fitness goals and what being healthy meant to them during user interviews. Based on the response, I saw that people were buying into the ridiculous body standards set by our society. They seemed to decide whether they were healthy or not based on the way their body looks and how much they weigh. But the irony is that most of these people who felt that they were unhealthy even after regular workouts because they were above "size 2" rarely had any sicknesses the past year!

Health goes beyond diet and exercise. Mental health matters too. There are body dysmorphia, bulimia, anorexia, and other mental illnesses out there that keep people from being healthy all because of the idea that being thin and having "six-packs abs" is the only pathway to being healthy and attractive.

To tackle this problem, I contacted a few fitness groups in Bangalore to start a campaign called "Healthy is the new skinny" to promote the idea that everyone is on their own journey to health and no two healthy bodies look alike. We conducted workshops on the importance of eating a healthy diet and loving your body.

And in the app design, after the user feedback, I decided not to show the number of likes on a post to other users and also decided to restrict the visibility of a user's post only to their friends so that people stay motivated even if they don't see quick results as they expected.

 

Healthy is the new skinny
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Mindmap

Based on the research insights and user interviews, I created a mindmap that will help me prioritize features and create the prototype. 

MindMap of Hustle.io
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Wireframes

Based on the mindmap, I sketched wireframes and created a simple prototype to test the social network functionality of the app. 

Low fidelity wireframes
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Final Designs

After testing the first set of wireframes, I iterated based on user feedback and created the final prototype using Adobe XD. 

final designs of the app

Feed

When customers first sign in to the app, they first see what their friends are up to with their workout goals and check if their friends are open to people joining them for a workout. 

Feed of app design

Joining a Live workout session

 

Users can join live workout sessions by experts for follow-along workouts to learn new exercises without the need to go to training centers.

Workouts section of app

Starting a run and measuring the progress of the run

 

Users can set their targets and start running to make sure that they meet those Targets. They can even play their favorite playlists while they are running without switching apps.

The lock screen functionality can be used to prevent accidentally stopping or pausing the progress tracker.

workout section of the app

Bookmark your favorite workouts

Users can bookmark and revisit their favorite workouts and articles easily.their 

84775373-3fa4-4561-bec7-8d14cd2baf64-min

Join local events

Users can join local events like marathons and fundraisers using the events tab in the app's workout section. Users can also access the runs they agreed to join with friends or directly join their friends if they missed the post in the feed.

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Outcome

The app is simple and easy to use. I have removed features like leaderboards to make the user's journey to a healthy body collaborative and not competitive. I incorporated a clean, hassle-free design.

 

My new designs are ready for development. I presented my final solution to potential users and received some great feedback.

“The idea that you  have come up with is amazing.”

Owner, Dore Fitness Gym

"I love the features, especially the one where I can join my friend for a run"

Coach, Heart-healthy fitness group

“It clearly shows how it’s beneficial for the users who lose motivation easily”

A regular jogger, Bangalore 

Learnings

This project has made me more aware of the impact that social media has on people's lives, and I’ve since become more conscious of my efforts towards building responsible digital products.

I’ve improved my design skills and learned how to use Adobe XD. The iterative approach has also taught me not to settle for the first idea but to test and iterate to improve it.

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