Apple to reward gym-goers via new Apple Watch Connected programme

Apple Watch owners will soon be able to book classes at their local gym after the Cupertino-based company partnered with four fitness firms on Thursday as part of a new rewards-based health initiative.

The ‘Apple Watch Connected’ programme will allow users to track their fitness and buy products among other features with the help of launch partners YMCA, Crunch Fitness, Orange Theory and Basecamp Fitness.

Gyms across the US will be able to participate in the initiative for free as long as they meet the criteria set out by Apple.

CEO Tim Cook spoke about the exciting potential for health-based advancements at an event in Dublin earlier this week, and the new benefits will increase the functionality of the already popular Apple Watch.

Apple wants to build an entire ecosystem around the gadget for regular gym-goers.

“I’m confident this will help member retention and keep members active and engaged,” Crunch Signature CEO Keith Worts said during an interview this week.

Users looking to join the new Apple Watch Connected initiative will need to have an iPhone and the Apple Watch App.

They will then be able to tap into a suite of services that will enable them to log into a gym, browse classes and keep tabs on their own fitness.

Fitness centres participating in the scheme will need to provide some sort of incentive to Apple Watch owners and accept digital wallet service Apple Pay.

Crunch Fitness, for example, is offering up to $4 in weekly credit for those who achieve goals such as visiting and working out on a monthly basis.

Crunch is rolling out Apple Watch Connected at two New York City-based gyms in the coming days and other partners have plans for launches in the coming days.

It is not yet known whether Apple will bring Apple Watch Connected to other countries or regions.

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