While the Apple Watch Series 7 may have only got an interim update at the Apple September event, the Fitness+ service got more love.
Apple’s fitness platform, which integrates with the Apple Watch, got an all-new group workout feature, and extra workout types, with Pilates added to the mix.
The new group workout feature, which will land later this Fall, allows subscribers to start a joint workout from a FaceTime call. The workout will run as normal, but participants are shown on screen, so they can offer some encouragement or smack talk.
And in a push towards mindfulness, Apple Fitness+ gets a new meditation mode, which has been spun off from the successful Mindful Cooldowns feature.
If a user chooses a meditation workout, they can choose from nine different themes including Purpose, Kindness, Gratitude, Awareness, Creativity, Wisdom, Calm, Focus, and Resilience. There are options for 5, 10 and 20 minute workouts.
And the Apple Watch integrations run even deeper here. While the Fitness+ meditations take place with video trainers, the audio will be available to listen to as part of the re-branded Mindfulness app in watchOS 8 (if you’re a Fitness+ subscriber).
And if that wasn’t enough, you can also start workouts from the Apple Watch to do while you meditate. That may sound crazy, but Apple feels that people might find going for a walk makes meditation easier – and if we’re honest, it does sound more appealing and mindful that sitting in the bedroom, struggling to clear our minds from thinking about doing the dishes or tidying up.
That’s a bit like the Time To Walk series of celebrity audio stories that accompany walking workouts released by Apple earlier this year, and the company is also adding more of those too.
The Ready for Snow Season set of workouts is led by Olympic gold medallist and five-time world champion Ted Ligety and features HIIT, strength, yoga, and core workouts to get people ready for the winter ski and snowboard season.
Most of these features are launching in the next few weeks onto Fitness+, apart from Group Workouts, which will come later in the Fall.
How we test