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March 15, 2023

Play to Win: 4 In-Studio Gamification Trends for 2022

Gamify Fitness to Boost Your Studio’s Revenue and Improve Loyalty in 2022

Boost Your Studio’s Revenue and Improve Loyalty with Gamification

Some would consider fitness and physical activity to be a chore, so when it becomes a game, we are inspired to accomplish the task instead of relying on our own willpower and motivation. From virtual bootcamps, exclusive swag competitions, to story-driven challenges, we’re witnessing a fitness revolution—and it’s the gamification of fitness apps and in-studio experiences.

Gamification for Boutique Fitness Studios

Gamified fitness apps add game-like elements, like competition with others and point scoring to encourage engagement with a product or service. Apps that gamify exercise distract from the chore at hand and lean into the natural desire to push ourselves for a reward.

At the foundation of fitness gamification is a variety of fun fitness apps. Fitness studios can use apps to engage members with gamification or run them in their own studio programs. Some key ways the best gamified fitness apps elevate the experience include:


Gamify fitness by building this feature into your loyalty program, to award customers who consistently show up with a token of gratitude. Even if it’s just a badge of honor, many of us like to be recognized for our hard work—and fitness is extremely hard work! Don't want to build out a custom rewards program? Use software like Perkville to easily and quickly create an effective rewards program.

Hot Tip: Perkville integrates into Mariana Tek software for even more visibility into your rewards program.


A great way to gamify exercise is for friends and members to use the iOS challenges feature with others and hold themselves accountable to reach their goals. This, paired along with simple challenge cards to track their progress, is sure to earn some engagement. At the end of the day, challenges themselves are motivators that form better habits.

Hot Tip: Make sure your challenges have are realistic and can be done by members with a range of abilities, also your challenges need a defined goal, end date, a way to track progress! One great example is Barry’s The United We Sprint Challenge for Pride 2022.

Social Sharing

Members want to be able to share their accomplishments, not only for bragging points but as a way to stay accountable to their community. Some apps that gamify workouts even build in features to applaud members when they share—the Nike+ app cheers every time a user likes a post on Facebook of a shared activity.

Curious how you can get in on the gamification trend? Download our e-book, Play to Win: improving engagement with gamification, to learn how you can spark member engagement by gamifying exercise.

Download the free guide

Gamification trends for 2022

Industry leaders seem to agree: fitness gamification isn’t going anywhere. The Welltodo 2022 Consumer Wellness Trends Report noted, “With 86% of Gen Z saying that their passions have diversified even more since the start of the pandemic, it’s time for fitness brands to stop thinking about fitness as a siloed offering but instead an entertainment lateral … A place where the intersections, the crossovers, the spaces and places where entertainment – in its fullest sense – can really come alive for a whole new generation.”

What does this future of gamification in fitness apps look like?

Wearable tech

Even the most motivated of us will forget to log the occasional workout. Investing in wearable tech, such as an Apple Watch or FitBit tracker, can keep track of your movements for an accurate reading of your exercise by day’s end. As we mentioned earlier, wearable tech can be integrated into challenges at your studio, driving members to achieve higher goals and claim the grand prize.

Hot Tip: Do most of your members use Apple Watches or FitBits? Incorporate these into your games to easily score participants.

Reward with swag!

Use special swag items that can only be earned through your challenges to reward your members to leverage your studio’s exclusivity. During a time when everyone is looking for ways to cut down on costs, earning free swag in exchange for steps is a small commitment to make. Not to mention, a great way to invest in workout gamification.

Hot Tip: Offer up limited-edition swag for challenges that occur around special occasions like studio anniversaries or the holidays.

Immersive fitness in the metaverse

The world of VR and the metaverse is swiftly gaining traction, so how can your studio leverage this opportunity to grow your brand and reach new customers with the gamification of exercise using VR? In late 2021, Nike dipped its toes into the metaverse by launching its own virtual world called NIKELAND. Nike developed this virtual world with Roblox’s platform, and allows players to explore different Nike buildings, fields and arenas where they can play mini games.

Hot Tip: All you need to incorporate VR into your studio’s offerings are the headsets, motion controllers, and access to a program that supports it. Try it out, and see if it’s something your members would want to try out.

Don't forget your download of our e-book, Play to Win: improving engagement with gamification, to see how you can gamify your workout today.

Elevate your member’s experience

At Mariana Tek, we are always looking at ways to help fitness studios reach their goals in new innovative ways. Not only do we help you provide premium experiences for your customers, but we are your partners in building and growing your business. With a wide variety of integration partners like Spivi, PerformanceIQ, IPStudio, and Tribe Fitness, you can take your gamified workout app to the next level.

Whether you’re trying to gamify working out for your members, focused on classes, personal training, or both, our feature set flexes to keep your staff and members organized, motivated, and on track. Build your brand, business and community at the same time, without sacrificing member experience to admin work.

Why not learn a bit more and see what we’re all about? Book a demo or see all of our top-rated apps and platform here:


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