The Top 10 Health & Fitness Apps Of 2020 Have One Thing In Common (Mostly)

Health and fitness apps are winning the Covid-19 era, thanks to closed gyms. But a certain kind of health and fitness app is winning mobile, according to a new report from Apptopia.

“Six out of ten of the top Health & Fitness apps are apps that offer video workouts or video-guided exercises,” Apptopia says. “If non-workout apps like Calm, Headspace, and Flo were not included here, the ratio of video to non-video fitness apps would be even greater.”


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Without those wellness apps, six of the top seven fitness apps include video components. Which says something about fitness in the Coronavirus era.

The top 10 health and fitness apps in the U.S. by downloads in the first half of 2020, according to Apptopia, are:

  1. Calm: 8.6 million installs
  2. Fitbit: 4.8 million installs
  3. MyFitnessPal: 3.9 million installs
  4. Headspace: 3.8 million installs
  5. Flo: 3.6 million installs
  6. Muscle Booster Workout: 3.4 million installs
  7. BetterMe: 3.2 million installs
  8. Fitness Coach: 2.9 million installs
  9. Samsung Health: 2.8 million installs
  10. Home Workout – No Equipment: 2.7 million installs

Video workout apps got 65% more downloads than non-video-based workout apps, Apptopia says. What’s more, they had almost 40% more daily active users, and generated 15% more revenue.

MORE FROM FORBES7 Key Differences Between Fitbit Sense And Apple Watch

The United States led the world in fitness and health app installs so far in 2020, with 146% more app downloads than India, and almost 300% more than Brazil or Russia. 64% of us are spending more time in fitness apps than we were last year, according to the report.

One caveat about this data: Chinese mobile app installs are typically not well-represented in mobile analytics companies’ data, since Google Play is not available in China, and many Chinese consumers install apps from a wide range of mobile app stores.

When you just look at video fitness apps, Fitbit’s app is a clear winner.

The Fitbit app has the most installs, the highest number of daily active users, and ranks fourth in in-app purchase revenue at $4.4 million, according to Apptopia. Video is a core part of the Fitbit app, which also has a premium version.

Fitbit is about to experience increased competition, however, as Amazon has started a paid subscription health service paired with its Halo Band and Apple has announced Fitness+, which will include personalized workouts and recommendations in nine categories and “world-class trainers.”

It’s always a good time to be fit.

And while now appears to be a particularly bad time to be an in-person gym, it also seems to be a good time to have a next-generation video-based fitness app.

The full report is available here.

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Marines may waive combat fitness tests for service members at risk for coronavirus – Pacific

Marines may waive combat fitness tests for service members at risk for coronavirus

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Marine Corps commanders may issue waivers for Marines, or even whole units, for semi-annual combat fitness tests if the testing sites cannot accommodate safety measures to protect against the coronavirus, a spokesman for III Marine Expeditionary Force on Okinawa said Monday.

The Corps is putting mitigating steps in place, such as screening Marines and taking their temperatures before the tests, disinfecting equipment and mandating face masks, said 1st Lt. Pawel Puczko by email to Stars and Stripes. He said Marines who are at a higher risk of contracting the coronavirus or share quarters with someone who is at a higher risk may apply for waivers.

In April, Marine Corps Commandant Gen. David Berger ordered a halt to all fitness testing due to the coronavirus. Last month, the Corps announced it will resume its physical fitness and combat fitness tests despite the ongoing pandemic.

Marines will have until the end of December to complete both tests, according to a Sept. 21 memo.

Individual waivers will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis, Puckzo said.

“The health and safety of our Marines is always a top priority,” he said. “Commands across III MEF have demonstrated their dedication to keeping Marines and families safe from COVID-19 through diligent planning and implementation of safety protocols.”

The allowance for commanders to issue both combat fitness test and physical fitness test waivers will extend across the Marine Corps, according to a Marine administrative order.

COVID-19 is the respiratory disease caused by the coronavirus.

Social distancing may prove difficult during the combat fitness test, in which one event requires Marines to drag and carry each other to simulate maneuver under fire, according to the official Marine Corps website.

The Air Force in September postponed its physical fitness assessments until January 2021. Body composition measurements — waist, height and weight — are postponed until further notice, according to last month’s announcement.

All airmen will receive maximum points for the so-called “abdominal circumference” component as part of their official score, including those with exemptions to that waist measurement, the statement said.

“We know people are staying fit regardless, but we want to give our Airmen enough time to prepare,” Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Charles Q. Brown Jr. said in the statement.

The Navy also postponed sailors’ physical fitness tests until further notice in an administrative message in July.

“Although the Navy PFA Cycle 2, 2020 has been excused, Sailors are reminded to make good choices for a healthy diet and are to continue a level of fitness to maintain Navy physical fitness standards,” the message said.

Thursday, the Army adopted its long-planned, six-event physical fitness

Are Outdoor Gyms the Future of Fitness?

On October 3, Equinox opened their latest gym in New York City’s Hudson Yards. Traditionally, such an outpost would have been housed in a well-appointed building: Inside the upscale mall of Brookfield Place, a grand neo-Grecian building in NoHo, or a limestone expanse on the Upper East Side. Instead, this one lies beyond temporarily erected black walls on a vacant corner of 30th street and 10th avenue. In fact, it’s not enclosed in any sort of structure at all. Which is exactly the point.

Called “Equinox + In the Wild,” this gym is completely outdoors. Treadmills, ellipticals, and rowing and weight machines are all under a tent, as is a fitness studio. Bathrooms are in a well-equipped trailer, and the locker room is a sleek black lean-to. Hand sanitizer stations dot the turf-field grounds, as do instructional signs: “Give Each Other Some Room,” reads one. “Suit Up: Masks must be worn at all times except when actively working out,” reads another. This is Equinox’s second open-air iteration: Last month, their first “In the Wild” Club opened in Los Angeles.

And it’s quite possibly a concept that is here to stay. While the world slowly begins to re-open amid the COVID-19 pandemic, gyms, by and large, remain either closed or operating at severely reduced levels. (Especially in New York City: Indoors, they’re limited to 25 percent capacity indoors, and group classes aren’t allowed at all.) Sensibly so: An enclosed area where people are heavily breathing, expelling body fluids, and sharing equipment is ripe for viral spread. In fact, in South Korea, a coronavirus cluster was traced back to a fitness center). Yet people need to exercise; not just for their physical wellbeing, but their mental one: It’s proven to reduce anxiety and depression. So, how does society work out, well, how to workout?

Moving everything outside, like restaurants did, was the obvious answer. But that’s a relatively unexplored concept for the fitness industry and their consumers: Sure, restaurants face similar restrictions as gyms. The difference, however, is that many eateries already had the infrastructure, experience, and precedent, to manage business outdoors. Plus, patrons are used to dining al fresco. Weightlifting al fresco? Not so much.

So, while the name “In the Wild,” was a tongue-in-cheek reference to its location smack-dab in the middle of a concrete jungle, it also implies something else: a venturing into a relative unknown.

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Readers Share Their Fitness Transformations: ‘It Has Changed My Life’

A Wall Street Journal article about reporter Anne Marie Chaker’s journey into midlife bodybuilding described a physical transformation that led to an emotional one as well. Readers wrote in to share their own experiences in setting fitness goals that helped them overcome challenges. Below is a selection of reader responses, which have been lightly edited for length and clarity.

Bodybuilding changed my life. I discovered it late myself; I was 48 for my first competition. I competed again at 50. Even though I placed second through fourth, it was never about placing for me but about feeling strong and putting in the effort day in and day out. It’s hard physical training and the mental work is even more difficult. Success is staying the course and just doing it.

—Jerri Henry

Meridian, Idaho

At the beginning of March, I discovered strength training and it has changed my life. I feel more confident in my mind/body/skin than I have ever experienced in my 37 years. As a working wife and mom, I always exercised but I never imagined it being something I would be so passionate about.

—Lamees Kelley

Sherborn, Mass.

At 66 I’ve been lifting weights most of my life but I could never build muscle mass. But I still work out hard. While many people think this is a narcissistic adventure, people like us know it is something different altogether. And if nothing else, it means we are in control of our bodies and health.

—Joseph DeRose

Bel Air, Md.

I recently underwent 10 rounds of chemo and started lifting weights to get back in shape after six months of just sleeping, getting poison in my veins and throwing up. I never thought about bodybuilding. But your story planted a seed.

—Orest Mandzy

Doylestown, Pa.

As a professional bodybuilder myself, I can relate to the regimen. We are often forced to find our way in the most turbulent times of our lives. Some of us step up and into making ourselves better people in all aspects. Many decide not to act.

—KJ Lavan

Houston, Texas

I am myself on a new workout routine; I know the sacrifices of counting calories, watching your three macronutrients, taking progress pictures, and challenging yourself every day. Not easy.

I am 53 years old and my goal is to regain the muscle mass that I lost over time by focusing too much on my career. I don’t want to be that guy getting old, seeing his body decline and say, “If only I had done something.” After 12 weeks of intense efforts I see the first subtle benefits of my hard work. It keeps me going.

—Gilles Georges

Mason, Ohio

Reminded me of the importance of right motivation, a settled confidence in one’s path, and the importance of navigating through the “tyranny of others’ expectations.” We all have the seeds of wrong motive within us; pushing past the shiny objects of “cheap and easy” to reach for the worthy goals is a rare accomplishment.

ICON Health & Fitness Announces $200 Million Growth Investment Led By L Catterton

Investment Will Further Accelerate Growth of Fitness Leader’s Connected Equipment and Industry-leading Subscription Technology Platform iFit

ICON Health & Fitness (“ICON”), the world leader in innovation, design and distribution of connected fitness equipment and software, today announced a $200 million growth investment led by L Catterton, the largest and most global consumer-focused private equity firm, and is joined by existing investor Pamplona Capital Management.

This press release features multimedia. View the full release here:

(Photo: Business Wire)

ICON owns established industry-leading fitness brands NordicTrack®, ProForm® and Freemotion®, which offer connected fitness membership services powered by iFit, the immersive live and on-demand streaming fitness and wellness media platform.

With revenue exceeding $1 billion in the last 12 months (ending September 30, 2020), ICON is the only company which creates connected fitness experiences across multiple brands, multiple product categories and all consumer fitness segments.

The investment will further accelerate ICON’s unique growth strategy of delivering its expansive range of interactive fitness products connected by iFit, the company’s patented content technology and media platform. With approximately 700,000 paid subscribers — and rapidly growing — iFit is enjoyed in the home, at the gym and on-the-go across ICON’s diverse range of products and partnerships.

Scott Watterson, Founder, Chairman and CEO of ICON said:

“Health and fitness have never been more important to consumers globally, and we are seeing explosive growth across our subscription software and fitness equipment businesses. We saw this fast-growing demand going into 2020, and this has accelerated sharply as people’s desire to stay healthy has intensified.

“We welcome L Catterton onboard at this incredibly exciting time in our company’s history. L Catterton has an exceptional history of success investing in consumer and fitness businesses. I look forward to working alongside Scott Dahnke and his team as we continue to accelerate growth across our various platforms and distribution channels.

“ICON reaches the fitness industry’s largest total addressable market in North America, Europe and around the world. The vast and expanding global health and fitness market presents a powerful platform for continued growth.

“This funding will further strengthen our leading position in connected fitness and deliver on our mission to help consumers of every demographic and fitness level pursue and achieve their health and fitness goals.”

Scott Dahnke, Global Co-CEO of L Catterton said:

“Over our 31-year history, L Catterton has had extensive experience partnering with leading fitness concepts and conducted proprietary research to understand what the consumer wants.

“We have long admired ICON as a pioneering health and fitness giant, with a core focus on technology, longstanding track record of innovation, and a proven, profitable growth model. As people around the world increasingly seek out new, immersive ways to exercise and stay healthy, ICON’s heritage, offerings, and scale are true differentiators.

“The company’s broad range of products across price points has democratized fitness, making it more accessible to everyone, everywhere. Their established and iconic brands such as NordicTrack and now increasingly iFit, with its significant subscriber growth, set ICON

Jessica Alba Shares Fitness Benefits From Vegan Hiking Retreat

  • Jessica Alba, 39, shared multiple photos and videos from a vegan hiking retreat.
  • In the caption, the actress said the experience helped her lower her cholesterol and increase lean muscle mass.
  • Besides hiking, the L.A.’s Finest gets her fitness on through TikTok dance challenges.

    Actress Jessica Alba, 39, spent the weekend on a health and fitness retreat with her BFF Kelly Sawyer that turned her into a “vegan hiker” (temporarily), and she’s sharing all about her experience in her latest Instagram post.

    The Honest Company founder posted a carousel of photos from her weekend that included a sweaty selfie video from a hike, a abs-tastic photo of Jessica and Kelly, a picture of some blister balm, her feet soaked in an ice bath, and some yummy vegan food.

    “So I’m a vegan hiker now… 😝JK. Spent a week as a guest @theranchmalibu with my BFF @kellysawyer ❤️,” the L.A.’s Finest star wrote in the caption. “We went on all the hikes, ate bomb vegan food, got our fitness on and are now ready to plunge back to reality with new healthy habits and tips on how to incorporate wellness into our day to day.”

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    Jessica noted that because of the hikes and vegan diet, she had some pretty noticeable health changes, pretty quickly.

    “Thanks to @theranchmalibu I slept 8 hours a night, lowered my cholesterol, increased my lean muscle mass and feel rejuvenated and ready to take on the rest of this year with a healthier and happier mindset,” she wrote.

    Jess’s lowered cholesterol is indeed a benefit from eating a plant-based diet, according to the Mayo Clinic. This is also because vegan food naturally doesn’t contain any cholesterol. (FYI: Your liver makes all the cholesterol you need, per the American Heart Association. The rest of the cholesterol in your body comes from foods derived from animals and is called “dietary cholesterol.”) And as for the other health benefits Jess experienced post-retreat, the results will likely vary person to person.

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    It certainly helps that Jessica is always trying out new workouts and foods to keep her body healthy and in great shape. Whether she’s dancing it out on TikTok with her daughters or getting in a tough resistance band workout, she’s always trying something new. Jessica told People that she does try to exercise in the a.m. and steer clear of processed foods—but she also gives herself a break if she feels like it. “I don’t deprive myself,” she told the publication. “I have [junk] if I want it. When I do feel that I am depriving myself, I find that I binge. That’s not a balanced way

    Home Fitness Equipment Market – Actionable Research on COVID-19 | Increasing Awareness about Fitness to Boost the Market Growth

    The global home fitness equipment market size is poised to grow by USD 657.43 million during 2020-2024, progressing at a CAGR of over 3% throughout the forecast period, according to the latest report by Technavio. The report offers an up-to-date analysis regarding the current market scenario, latest trends and drivers, and the overall market environment. The report also provides the market impact and new opportunities created due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Download a Free Sample of REPORT with COVID-19 Crisis and Recovery Analysis.

    This press release features multimedia. View the full release here:

    Technavio has announced its latest market research report titled Global Home Fitness Equipment Market 2020-2024 (Graphic: Business Wire)

    The increased awareness about the importance of health and fitness as one of the primary growth factors for this market. Consumers are increasingly becoming aware of the importance of exercising and the availability of new and advanced equipment. To increase customer awareness, vendors in the market have started using interactive videos and pages on social media channels to provide guidance directly from the experts. Fitness professionals provide a variety of fitness services such as workout routines, workout calculators, and training tips to a variety of people with varying levels of fitness. The increasing initiatives taken by vendors to educate people about fitness will significantly contribute to the growth of the home fitness equipment market size.

    Register for a free trial today and gain instant access to 17,000+ market research reports. Technavio’s SUBSCRIPTION platform

    Report Highlights:

    • The major home fitness equipment market growth came from offline distribution channel segment. The steady rise in the number of stores that offer home fitness equipment is a major factor driving the growth of the offline segment. These stores often have customer-care professionals to offer advice on the benefits of the equipment, which is a major reason why people prefer these stores.

    • North America was the largest home fitness equipment market in 2019, and the region will offer several growth opportunities to market vendors during the forecast period. The presence of a large population that is health-conscious and able to afford home fitness equipment will significantly drive home fitness equipment market growth in this region over the forecast period.

    • The global home fitness equipment market is fragmented. Amer Sports Corp., Core Health & Fitness LLC, Dyaco International Inc., Icon Health & Fitness Inc., Impulse (Qingdao) Health Tech Co. Ltd., Johnson Health Tech Inc., Life fitness, Nautilus Inc., TECHNOGYM Spa, and Tunturi New Fitness BV. are some of the major market participants. To help clients improve their market position, this home fitness equipment market forecast report provides a detailed analysis of the market leaders.

    • As the business impact of COVID-19 spreads, the global home fitness equipment market 2020-2024 is expected to have Positive and Superior growth. As the pandemic spreads in some regions and plateaus in other regions, we revaluate the impact on businesses and update our report forecasts.

    Read the full report here:

    Rise in Preventive Healthcare will be a

    ISL: Quarantined in Goa, JFC players focus on fitness

    Footballers work to schedules given by conditioning coach Adrian Dias

    Bhupender Singh works out at his hotel room in Goa on Monday.

    The Covid guidelines may have kept them in isolation but players from Jamshedpur FC are keeping themselves busy in fitness drills in their respective rooms in Goa, which will host the cash-rich Indian Super League (ISL) next month.

    Winger Jackichand Singh, Bhupender Singh, William Lalnunfela, mid-fielders Amarjit Singh Kiyam, Isaac Vanmalsawma, left-back Ricky Lallawmawma and defender Laldinliana Renthlei, who arrived in Goa last week, are working out at the luxury rooms of Hotel Vivanta in Panaji.

    The JFC players have been quarantined for 10 days at the hotel and are currently working under strength and conditioning coach Adrian Dias.

    “Dias is in Mangalore and is in touch with the players via digital media (whatsapp and email). The players are following his instructions,” a member of the team management said on the condition of anonymity.

    According to him, the Jamshedpur players have been given fitness schedule and are working out according to that. “It’s daily routine but the players have the liberty to fix their own timing of workout. After all, the fitness drills are taking place indoors. It would be different when all the players, including foreign recruits, begin their outdoor training later this month,” he added.

    The 10 young footballers from the JFC reserves side are also working out in their respective at the hotel.

    According to him, Dias is expected to land in Goa sometime next week. “Dias is an experienced strength and fitness coach who has worked with the JFC. He is very attentive on players and tries his best to keep the players in top-flight fitness. After all, fitness is the key to on-field performance,” the team management member said.  

    He revealed that all the players who are in Goa went through Covid-19 tests are have tested negative. “So far things are good. All the players, including ones from the junior team, have tested negative. More tests would be conducted on the footballers,” he informed.

     He said most of the Indian and their foreign counterparts, including head coach Owen Coyle, will be in Goa later this week. “The entire squad and support staff should be in Goa by October 8. The foreign players will straightaway go into 14-day isolation at Taj Fort in Candoling (near Panjim). The off-shore players will also undergo Covid tests,” he added.

    The entire JFC contigent will stay in secure bio-bubble throughout the lengthy cash-rich tournament which will stretch till March next year.

    Jamshedpur FC CEO Mukul Choudhari said fitness is a main component and they want their players to be fully fit before the start of the tournament. “We want our players to be fully fit and it is good they are already working out,” he added.

    Senior JFC team management members are in constant touch with head coach Owen Coyle and are giving him the necessary feedback.”Coyle is being updated about the team and related matters, including preparation of training ground at Sangola,” a source said.

    Barring a player from 

    NBC’s ‘Today’ Launches Fitness, Cooking Classes Via Streaming Video

    Carson Daly, Craig Melvin, Savannah Guthrie, Hoda Kotb, Al Roker sitting at a table

    © NBC/NBCU Photo Bank

    Click here to read the full article.

    NBC’s “Today” has a new digital-video recipe for the cooking and wellness segments that are a staple of its morning schedule.

    Between October 5 and 9, the program’s streaming-video counterpart, “Today All Day,” will host 30-minute “Get Moving With” fitness classes at 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. During the week of October 12, the outlet will feature cooking classes that give viewers the chance to sign up for emails with ingredient shopping lists that will be delivered in advance iof the session. The “Get Cooking With” shows will stream at 5 p.m. and 9 p.m. eastern.

    The “All Day” feed is available on NBC’s Peacock streaming-video hub as well as Today’s web site.

    “This is a way to meet the demand we’re seeing from our audience for full-length programming and to experiment with appointment viewing to drive consistent and scheduled viewership,” says Ashley Parrish, vice president of strategic content and executive editor of Today Digital.

    NBC News launched “Today All Day” in July in a bid to extend the flagship morning program to digital venues as younger consumers migrate to new streaming venues. The round-the-clock feed, which offers four six-hour blocks, contains segments from recent show archives as well as  original shows starring current “Today” hosts.

    The classes will feature a range of instructors and experts. Fitness teachers will include celebrity trainer Isaac Boots and Olympic water polo player Ashleigh Johnson. Cooking teachers will include Nyesha Arrington of Bravo’s “Top Chef” and reality-TV personality Jessie James Decker, as well as “Today” mainstay Al Roker.

    “In a time when the pandemic is making it difficult to take classes in-person, head to the gym or get together with friends for a meal, these classes offer a way for viewers to stay healthy and are a fun activity for friends and family to enjoy together virtually,” says Melissa Dunlop, senior producer for Today Digital.

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    Is Planet Fitness still set to open in Greer?

    Question: I’m curious as to if/when the Planet Fitness in Greer, is supposed to be completed. I heard before the pandemic an opening of this past summer, but it looks like no progress had been made,  

    a parking lot in front of a building: Planet Fitness plans to open in the former big lots on W. Wade Hampton Boulevard in Greer in late 2020.

    © Elizabeth LaFleur/STAFF
    Planet Fitness plans to open in the former big lots on W. Wade Hampton Boulevard in Greer in late 2020.

    Answer: Don’t worry, Greer’s Planet Fitness is still on track to open this year. 


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    I wrote about this project late last year when someone asked what would be going into the former Big Lots space in the Greer Plaza development at 805 W. Wade Hampton Boulevard in Greer.

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    According to Abigail Lacaillade, an account executive with the company that handles PR for Planet Fitness, the Greer location is slated to open later this year, though an exact date is not yet known. 

    The gym will fill more than 20,000 square feet of space in the development. 

    Planet Fitness currently has nine locations in the Greenville-Spartanburg-Anderson area including on on Wade Hampton closer to Greenville. 

    The low-cost gym chain is known for its “judgment free zone” policy that’s aimed at creating a gym atmosphere that’s accessible to people in all phases of fitness.

    Other businesses at the Greer Plaza site include a Dollar General, Belk and Walmart Neighborhood Market.

    Lacaillade said she would keep me posted on an exact date and I will share that information as I’m able. 

    Do you have a question you want answered? Send it to [email protected], contact Elizabeth on her Facebook page at or send questions via mail to Elizabeth LaFleur, 32 E. Broad St., Greenville, SC 29601. Answers will appear in the Tuesday and Friday print editions of The Greenville News.

    This article originally appeared on Greenville News: Ask LaFleur: Is Planet Fitness still set to open in Greer?

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