I’m a fan of gamifying any kind of fitness. And recently, I read an article that covered how virtual reality fitness may be coming to the hospitality industry. And it got me thinking, yes, I would take advantage of hotel fitness equipment in my room.
Especially while much of the world is still in lockdown mode from COVID-19 and its variant.
I know there are home VR systems you can take with you to the hotel. But that would mean packing more along as you travel.
Benefits of In-Room Hotel Fitness Gear
As someone who enjoys visiting hotels, having in-room fitness equipment has some incredible perks. Especially for someone who loves turning exercise into a game.
So, right off the bat, I can see several benefits if this was to become a real thing.
Don’t Have to Worry About Closures
In April and May of 2020, I had to live in a hotel while waiting for the paperwork to finish to buy this house. During that time, COVID-19 was at its peak, and everything in the hotel was shut down.
I was even next door to Topgolf and wasn’t able to play a single game. Centennial was nearly shut down altogether.
This meant no swimming, hot tub, or exercise room…three of my favorite things when staying at a hotel in the first place.
Having in-room hotel fitness equipment would have made a huge difference in my stay. For one thing, I would have made fewer laps around the hotel as walking was pretty much the only thing I could do at the time.
Easy to Access
Having the equipment right there in the room means less time in the elevator and walking to the “fitness” center. I wouldn’t have to worry about kids running around, or people peaking in to watch me work out.
I’m a bit self-conscious when it comes to stuff like that. My ex calls me a prude.
At any rate, having quick and easy access would probably inspire people to do more in terms of exercise. Especially if it were fun.
No Waiting for Fitness Machines
One thing I hate about going to the gym, especially when it’s busy, is waiting on specific machines. Then, I walk around trying to think of what to do next as someone just through my whole plan of action out of whack.
A fitness device in the room means I wait for no one. And I can exercise all I want without worrying about people waiting on me.
If the games were fun, I’d probably spend less time lounging on the couch or on the bed watching television.
Now, the Down Side
While some things always sound good on paper, there is a realism we need to address. Because everything good always has a lot of bad to go along.
But, we won’t really know for sure until hotel fitness rolls out with VR systems in the rooms.
Costs a Lot to Set Up Properly
To set up a decent VR system for in-room hotel fitness, it’s going to cost a bit. Now, think of how many rooms even the smallest hotels have in total.
Sure, I suppose hotels can set up a few rooms and rates as they do for people with special needs. Then, we run into the problem of waiting on a room that has the gear to open up.
There are low-cost methods for setting up VR fitness equipment. But, not from the standpoint of setting something up in a hotel room.
Stealing May Be an Issue
I hardly doubt that someone would be able to walk off with a treadmill. But depending on the VR equipment a hotel would use, something like hand or head units can easily fit into a backpack.
I know that the hotel would then charge the visitor’s credit or debit card on file for any missing equipment. But what if the visitor foresaw that issue and closed the account before being charged?
Yes, I know too many nefarious people who wouldn’t think twice about doing this.
Square Footage in the Room
Depending on the equipment used for in-room hotel fitness, living spaces may need to be redesigned. I’ve stayed in some extremely small, modern rooms that barely had enough space to move about.
I hate minimalist hotels.
When I play the Xbox Kinect, I’m all over the place. I would surely put my hand into a mirror, picture, or television if it were too close.
Then again, I would easily stay in a room if they replaced the couch with a VR treadmill or cycling apparatus.
How Feasible Is In-Room Hotel Fitness Gear?
OK, let’s take the VR element out of the equation. What if hotels simply offered in-room fitness equipment? For instance, bulkier items such as treadmills, exercise bikes, and rowing machines.
Something like this would be far more feasible given the state of technology nowadays. And, it would be a welcome bonus for those who are traveling despite the global pandemic.
People like me, who had no choice but to stay in a hotel or be homeless, would welcome the addition of exercise equipment when the fitness facility is closed.
I would have easily clocked in several workouts per day if I would have had access to something like this during my month-and-a-half long stay.
You probably wouldn’t want to load up a room with free weights, though. The pessimist in me can just see someone hurling a dumbbell out a window. But, something like a digital rowing machine would have been incredible.
Would You Pay More for VR Hotel Fitness Gear?
Of course, with added amenities comes the added price tag. And to be honest, I’m not sure if I’d pay extra to have access to VR gear in my hotel room.
I suppose it would have to depend on how much of a price difference we’re talking about. In some areas, the rooms are stupid high, to begin with.
However, the curiosity in me would have to try it at least once, even if it was just a one night stay.
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