Virtual Reality is advancing more and more every single day. Whether it be to play games, for therapy, or to get fit, the possibilities are expanding as every day goes by and it is helping many industries. One area that is seeing a lot of positive change thanks to VR, is the world of fitness.
Virtual Reality in Sport
Due to the COVID pandemic, many aspects of sport and training have been affected. Clubs have been closed, gyms have been closed, and those that were receiving high-level coaching and training weren’t able to participate anymore.
Due to the need to adapt, sports like football and golf have both benefited from VR. Train Effective, a company backed by former Manchester United player Rio Ferdinand, are aiming to give youth players the opportunity to receive world-class coaching and training, using VR.
Many youth players will only ever receive this training if they are signed to a club, but those that aren’t signed are clearly at a disadvantage. VR is being used to change this, so even though you can’t go to the training facility, you can still get the priceless coaching.
This tech is being used in the world of golf as well. VR and AI powered technology is being used to help players improve their swing, show them where they are going wrong, and put them on a golf course, all while being at home.
This may not be exactly like being on a football pitch or at the driving range with a coach, but what it is doing is allowing more and more people to have access to training and coaching that may otherwise be too expensive or just not accessible.
Virtual Reality Training
With regards to athletes using VR to train, it is also shown that it is the ideal way for professional athletes to maintain their training schedules and do drills while at home or unable to reach a training complex.
Football teams have been using VR to allow their players to partake in online, group training sessions, ensuring their skills stay up to date even though they aren’t allowed, or can’t be together.
This has been a vital aspect for many, including Olympic athletes wanting to train for the upcoming Olympics. VR has also been used to minimize the effects of isolation and ensure that players still receive that motivation and drive they would have if they were with their teammates.
Virtual Reality Exercise
VR has also been used with non-athletes, just regular people wanting to get or stay fit. VR headsets are all able to run some kind of exercise game on them, while some companies have made their own for you to use.
Many of these workouts are bodyweight-focused, so it isn’t quite the same as being at a gym, but it has been helping many people to work out, as finding self-motivation may be quite difficult, especially if you have been stuck at home, by yourself for a while.
Smart exercise bike manufacturer Peloton has also entered this world and has developed an app that offers live and pre-recorded training sessions that give users that same workout they would receive in a spin class.
Besides the exercise, sport, and training-focused VR applications, there are a number of fun games you can play that double as a workout. Whether it is boxing, dancing, or even being wielding some beat sabers, VR has it all.
BoxVR brings boxercise into the comfort of your home, allowing you to take part in fun exercise routines, while you box to multiple different songs and soundtracks across a variety of genres.
Dance Central is another great game that gives you an incredible workout. There are 32 routines you can learn the steps too, all set to multiple songs that get you in the mood to workout.
Guided Tai Chi is a far more relaxing and simple exercise app. There are over 200 different workouts to choose from, ranging from beginner to intermediate and expert. Tai chi is also incredible for relaxation and clearing your mind, perfect for breaking the monotony of lockdown.
What has been made obvious, is that the capabilities of VR go far beyond what a lot of people and experts initially thought. There are so many ways for VR to be utilized to help people across the planet, all from their couch.
The ability to bring world-class training and drills to individuals across the world is almost certainly going to change the face of sport and competition for the better. That is another aspect that needs to be considered, competition.
What is stopping entire sporting events taking place entirely online in a Virtual Reality world? This possibility might not be as far-fetched as we once thought, it is just a matter of time before the technology catches up with the ideas.
No matter how you look at it, VR is becoming more and more prominent in the fitness world, and it is most definitely a beneficial addition. No need to work out by yourself anymore put on a headset, and join a class, just like you would in the gym.