Apple’s September event held a veritably smorgasbord of new products and services that it’s launching, but one of the most eye-catching was Apple Fitness+, a new fitness experience that it’s launching.
Part of the Apple One family of connected services but also accessible on its own, Fitness+ looks like a great new way to get fit using Apple’s devices, all built with an Apple Watch in mind. We’ve got all the details you need to know about the new service right here, so strap in to find out everything.
What is Apple Fitness+?
Put simply, Apple Fitness+ is a new way to get workouts to complete in whatever setting you prefer, whether at a gym you visit, in your own home or outdoors, using Apple Watch to pair with visuals on an iPhone, iPad or Apple TV.
It gives you the studio-style experience that’s become so coveted, especially during lockdown, without any additional equipment needed. The image above is the most succinct demonstration – you can prop your phone up, follow along with a workout, and get personalised stat displays both on your wrist and on your display of choice in real-time.
The service will have workouts you can complete on your own, as well as studio-style classes you can tune into with the cast of trainers Apple’s proudly shown off, all of whom look, well, like fitness gurus, so that’s good.
It also offers a wide range of activity types to make sure that there’s plenty to appeal to people, including Cycling, Treadmill, Rowing, HIIT, Strength, Yoga, Dance, Core, and Mindful Cooldown among others.
Finally, if you’ve got Apple Music you’ll also find integration there, letting you easily browse and save playlists geared around each workout.
What do I need for Apple Fitness+?
Apple Fitness+ is very much built with Apple Watches in mind, but won’t work with every single combination of Watches and iPhones out there. The baseline requirement is an Apple Watch Series 3 or later paired with at least an iPhone 6s or later, or iPhone SE.
On the iPad side, the service will work with iPad Pro, iPad (5th generation or later), iPad mini 4 or later, iPad Air 2, or iPad Air (3rd generation), while Apple TV 4K and Apple TV HD will both support it.
In terms of exercise equipment, you will need to bring your own, and unlike Peleton, which you buy the bike or treadmill, Apple is expecting you to have those. In terms of exercise kit, workouts that use kit currently focus around you needing either dumb-bells, a yoga mat, an exercise bike, a rowing machine or a treadmill, although there are a number of classes that won’t need anything other than yourself.
Weekly classes and recommendations
Each class will be between 5 – 45 minutes. Apple has confirmed there around two dozen or so new classes added each week across the catalogue with the hope that this combined with the launch classes means there is quickly hundreds of different classes to get you started.
To get you into the classes the new feature (found in the Fitness app) will recommend classes to you based on what you’ve previously done. The Fitness+ recommendations engine will suggest workouts in the times, types and trainers you typically do (looking back at the last 60 days.) Things you don’t do or can’t do won’t show up in recommendations with the exception of complimentary workouts suggested for cross-training which are clearly labeled as suggestions to balance out your routine.
And while the classes are hosted by exclusive professional trainers, there will be guidance for your fitness levels. For those really worried about how to start off there will be an “Absolute beginner” class so you can ease in gently.
Fitness+ and Apple Music
The app comes with a number of built-in playlists to match the exercise on screen, although you will be able to bring in your own playlists too. For the later, you’ll need an Apple Music subscription though.
How much does Apple Fitness+ cost?
The best things in life are rarely free, and Fitness+ is no exception – Apple’s got a premium service on its hands, here. Its standard pricing is $9.99 or £9.99 each month, although you can take out an annual membership for $79.99 or £79.99.
Happily, all new Apple Watch purchases from now on will come with a three-month trial of Fitness+, letting you sample the service with your new wearable. Interestingly, Best Buy looks like it’s already offering a six-month trial, showing that retailers may be able to increase this incentive. Current Apple Watch owners will be able to try for a month before the monthly/yearly subscription kicks in.
There’s also the new Apple One system of memberships to contend with, though. Apple’s not initially offering Fitness+ as part of Apple One’s lower two tiers, but if you sign up for the Apple One Premier plan for $29.99 or £29.99 each month, you’ll get Fitness+ along with all the other memberships the tier brings.
For more details, check out our guide on Apple One.
When will Fitness+ be available?
Fitness+ doesn’t have a firm launch date, but Apple told Bloomberg the app will launch in the US “this quarter”, or by the end of the year, with training for yoga, cycling, running, strength exercises, and other types of workouts.