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Fitness App Installs Up 67%, Thanks To Covid-19

Web & Mobile

Josue Castillo wrote this article


Without a doubt, 2020 was a year for the books!

Everyone’s ‘new normal’ consisted of staying home, working from home (or not at all), wearing masks, and constantly fighting the fear of catching Covid-19.

The best way I have found to get through a pandemic is to stay busy and keep yourself distracted.

A workout from home is a great way to do this safely.

Wellness and fitness apps saw a 67% jump in global installs in late March and early April in comparison to 2019. Click To Tweet

The coronavirus pandemic led mobile users to find new ways to stay in shape while gyms were closed during lockdowns.

Fitness Apps On the Rise

In the U.S., installs of health and fitness apps were 58% higher at the end of March from the previous year’s average.

Daily sessions peaked at 25% above average in May, and have slowly declined since then.

By July, daily sessions were 16% higher than average, indicating that many consumers were still engaged with the apps.

It wasn’t just in the US. Brazil, Germany, Mexico and the U.K. also experienced increased usage of fitness apps, the study found.

The United States saw an impressive increase in installs as lockdown restrictions came into place at the end of March, at 58% higher than the 2020 average.

Sunday is the peak day for usage of health and fitness apps, while Friday is the lowest, as users prepare for the weekend or have a “cheat day,” per the study.

Getting Through A Stressful Time

Working out is how I deal with my stress and anxiety.

Since every gym in my city was closed due to the Covid-19 Pandemic, I found myself looking for alternatives to stay fit and healthy.

As much as I knew that working out at home was my only option, I also knew that I didn’t have a lot of fitness equipment or space.

One of our team members decided to try a new fitness app every day for a week to see which one would fit best into their lifestyle.

Being isolated from others, forced to wear masks, and unable to do the things you normally would takes a toll on your mental health.

During a pandemic, mental health can easily worsen or go hay-wire, but being a part of a community with similar goals can help lesson the burden.

At a time of inconsistency and uncertainty, working out has allowed routines to be continued or created with a sense of focus, community, and belonging.

“Apps have enabled a sense of ‘being in this together’, through the pursuit of similar goals, communal encouragement, and sharing of ideas.”

Due to social restrictions, more users have been turning to mobile apps in order to connect with like-minded people who also enjoy exercising.

Apps are a great way to bring people together to complete goals, while at the same time slaying the dragon of mental health.

The Slay App by Mari Fitness

The Slay app was created by the team at Mari Fitness, led by fitness entrepreneur and well-known healthy lifestyle influencer Mari Llewellyn.

Over the years, Mari and her team have put countless hours into building a wellness brand that millions of people meaningfully engage with every year, but they had never ventured into the mobile app space.

Mari Fitness wanted to engage their million strong social media fanbase via their own unique mobile platform.

Slay gives the Mari Fitness community and new users alike a new way to slay their fitness journey.

Users have quick access to their existing resource library and it’s easier than ever to keep track of their gym guides and watch exercise videos while they workout.

The Slay App made its debut to the App Store Top Ten within twenty-four hours of its initial launch, and hit #3 at its peak on Google Play under health and fitness.

Notifications and in-app messaging are uplifting, fun and embody the Mari Fitness brand voice. Throughout the mobile app, there are all sorts of engaging ways for users to track ongoing progress, goals, and personal stats.

From a usability standpoint, the Slay app has a lot of elements encouraging daily use.

Besides the robust exercise and daily nutrition knowledge base, users can also browse and purchase available supplements and other workout gear courtesy of Mari Fitness.

Slay app users can proactively complete their workout routines, launching it daily for Mari’s trusted workout guidance, while tracking their progress, and sharing photos to social media — all in one place.

Looking to the Future of Working Out

It remains to be seen just how quickly fitness app users will return to their old habits of going the gym once Covid concerns subside, which would ultimately reduce their app usage.

However, the reopening of gyms won’t necessarily lure users back right away. Only 17% of U.S. consumers said they feel safe going to the gym, a lower rate than for other activities like going out to eat (34%), going to a shopping mall (28%) or going to the movies (17%).

Data shows that although installs have started to decrease following their respective peaks during the first round of lockdowns, sessions are still trending far higher than back in 2019.

For 2021, I predict that installs will continue to be higher than 2019, but less than 2020 simply because everyone won’t be comfortable going into gyms just yet. And while the addition of the Covid19 vaccine may assuage fears, it won’t make them go away entirely.

Still, I believe fitness apps will do well in 2021, and there are sure to be many more promising fitness apps to market in the coming months.

One key to success, it would seem, being the brand behind the fitness app, as shown in the powerhouse success of brands like Peloton and even the Slay app’s successful launch in early January 2021.

Right now is the perfect time to launch a fitness app. And we are here to help you every step of the way.

About Since 2009, we have helped create 350+ next-generation apps for startups, Fortune 500s, growing businesses, and non-profits from around the globe. Think Partner, Not Agency.


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