GAIN Fitness, a startup that creates personalized workouts based on certified trainers’ expertise, announced today that it has raised $650K in seed funding from InterWest Partners, Slide COO and angel investor Keith Rabois, Former Director of Platform at Facebook and Director of Partnerships, Content and Platforms at YouTube, Ben Ling, Michael Tanne, early founding YouTube team member Brent Hurley, Seraph Group and others.
This comes on top of GAIN’s launch of its iPhone app in July, which allowed fitness enthusiasts to begin accessing their personalized routines via mobile. Founded by former Googlers, GAIN is all about allowing those looking to get in shape access to quality training regimens without having to pay for expensive personal trainers or go through the process of researching workouts by creating a symbiotic marketplace for both personal trainers and fitness consumers.
GAIN’s iOS and web apps currently deliver these personalized workout experiences that can be experienced on the go, but the startup (backed by its new infusion of capital), aims to launch v3.0 of its iOS in January, which will supe up the platform, allowing its professional trainers to design and sell fitness multimedia “packs” that target specific fitness goals, usage scenarios — like at the gym, on the road, or at home, as well as different fitness levels.
This update will be a big lunge forward for GAIN as a GAIN, as it will give users of all stripes, body types, fitness levels — in any scenario — the opportunity to design personalized workout routines, or maintain their plans, from any location, regardless of schedule.
Those with demanding jobs, schedules, and full travel schedules are all too aware of the cost these things can have on staying in shape. The key for success for a young startup (aside from funding, etc.) is listening to feedback from your users, even if taking their feedback to heart means “pivoting” or adapting your service to meet their needs. In the case of GAIN, Founder and CEO Nick Gammell said that, initially, the teams’ focus was solely on the Web.
From the beginning, they’ve wanted to become an “anytime, anywhere” fitness resource, but the Web continues to be the venue of choice for more complex schedule, discovery, and social tools. But the startup’s 600K+ users wanted to be able to access their fitness routines on the go, and so GAIN, which had building an iOS app on the side, launched a paid app. But users weren’t happy about the pay grade, so they relaunched the app for free.
Since then, he says, users have been using GAIN’s workout building and tracking tools 4 to 5 times more, per user, compared to its web app. Now, Gammell said, the service is at a place where 40 percent of sessions are happening via mobile device, a bulk of which has come since the free app launched in October. In case you needed another example of how free beats the paywall, it seems GAIN is it.
GAIN also happens to look great, which is easy when you have the original designer of Google-acquired Picasa and NASA app developers on your team. With more than 700-plus exercises (strength, plyometric, callisthenic, yoga), as well as custom-tailored workouts, the startup is attempting to democratize the fitness experience, and so far it seems to be working. It will have to considering the plethora of gamified fitness startups out there, like Fitocracy, or any number of other cool startups, like Fitango, CrossFit, Fitbit, RunKeeper, WellnessFX — not to mention wellness devices.
It’s wonderful to see, because we, as a country need to stay in better shape.
The startup plans to announce its trainer partners, along with its new iOS marketplace in January 2012, and Gammell says that an Android app is on its way.