Apple today launched a new component of its personal health subscription service Fitness+: ‘Time to Walk’. It allows users who own an Apple Watch to do a tracked walking exercise while listening to stories or inspiring conversations from “influential and interesting people.”
These talks are automatically downloaded to users’ Apple Watch, provided that those users subscribe to Fitness+. When users start listening to one of the 25-40 minute episodes, the watch will start to follow a Walk workout. For wheelchair users, Time to Walk is instead called “Time to Push” and offers an Outdoor Welchair Walk Pace workout instead.
The announcement states that “Each Time to Walk episode is shaped by the guest’s personal, life-shaping moments and includes lessons learned, meaningful memories, intentional thoughts and gratitude, moments of levity and other thought-provoking topics, recorded as they walk outside.” . or in locations that are meaningful to them.”
The stories and conversations will, of course, include audio of the speaking figure, but Apple says this feature will also display photos on the Apple Watch at certain times during the conversations to illustrate the stories or points.
The talks are also followed by short playlists composed of songs that gave the speaker ‘motivation and inspiration’.
The first episodes of Time to Walk come from the following guests: country singer Dolly Parton, NBA player Draymond Green, musician Shawn Mendes and actor Uzo Aduba. New episodes appear every Monday “until the end of April”.
The announcement came with this statement from Jay Blahnik, Apple’s senior director of Fitness Technologies:
Walking is the most popular physical activity in the world and one of the healthiest things we can do for our bodies. A walk can often be more than just exercise: it can help clear the mind, solve a problem or welcome a new perspective… Even during this challenging period, walking has remained an activity that has remained available to many. With Time to Walk, we bring original content to Apple Watch in Fitness+ every week with some of the most diverse, fascinating and celebrated guests providing inspiration and entertainment to help our users keep moving through the power of walking.
Experts and organizations such as the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommend that people do 150 minutes a week of moderate-intensity exercise, which for some could include walking, but many Americans don’t come close.
Personal tech products like smartphones and smart watches have increasingly become part of the fight against that problem in the United States and elsewhere. Apple launched Apple Fitness+ in December, its first health-focused subscription. There are also plenty of third-party apps in the iOS and Android App Stores that offer similar content and features, and many other major tech companies have made their way into personal health as well.
List image by Apple