I’ve never been good at working out alone. Whether that’s, in a or , I’ve always needed a trainer or coach to motivate me and give me that extra push.
But for many reasons, working out at a class, studio or with a personal trainer IRL is not always realistic or attainable. Enterlike Future that aim to bring the experience of working with a trainer or coach one-on-one to your phone.
Many fitness apps promise to give you the personal coach experience, but I’ve never seen one deliver on that quite like— and I’ve tried a lot of fitness apps over the years. Between voice prompts, FaceTime check-in calls with your trainer and messaging within the app, you actually feel like you’re working with a real person and not a robot.
Below is the breakdown on everything you need to know about the Future app like pricing, subscription information and features. I tried the Future fitness app for a few months and I’m sharing my honest thoughts here.
How Future works
Future is a $149 per month membership, and the app is available only on iOS. When you first sign up for Future, you don’t start working out right away. While you may be eager to start moving immediately, you begin by matching with a coach, entering your fitness goals into the app and taking time to chat with your coach one-on-one so you can get to know each other and they can better understand what you’re looking for when it comes to your fitness and workout goals. Future works best with the, so your coach can view your real-time stats (like heart rate). If you don’t have one, Future will lend you one for free.
Once you’re set up with a coach, you’ll have a call to talk about your workouts. I really enjoyed this call since it made the entire experience feel more personal. Connecting with someone face to face, even if it is over the phone, changes the dynamic for the rest of the app experience, in my opinion. This talk also gives your coach more time to ask in-depth questions or get to know you and how you work out better than if you just chat back and forth a bit over an app.
After you get your training plan, which your coach will send to you every Sunday, each workout is programmed for you by day. You can do the workout whenever you like since all of the prompts and exercise demos are prerecorded. Your coach will check in with you in real time, especially if they see you just did a workout (or skipped a day that you usually work out).
What the workouts are like
Each workout is programmed as a list of exercises, which you can see in an overview before you begin. Once you tap start, you can select a playlist by genre, which will play in the background as you work out. Since your watch is synced with the app, you can also view each exercise on your watch if you don’t want to look at your phone. I prefer using my phone though, since each exercise is demoed in a video on the screen by a trainer.
Your exercises are not filmed for you personally. Rather, a library of workout moves are programmed into the Future app and your trainer creates your custom workout from those. This is helpful especially if you want to see how to do the correct form. An audio guide tells you what to do simultaneously, and there’s a timer for each exercise, so you don’t have to keep track on your own, which I like. Once you complete a workout, you can send a message to your trainer with feedback or even request tweaks if there is something you want to change, e.g., maybe next time you want a different stretch or moves that target your abs more.
Overall I was really impressed with the quality and user experience of the app. While I only tried exercises that require body weight only and very little equipment, the coaches can help you reach just about any fitness goal depending on your equipment, so you can work on weight lifting, strength training and more.
Who it’s for
People who need a lot of accountability to stay motivated. Your Future coach asks you about your goals and will check in on you basically every day to ask about your progress and your workout. While I’m not someone who needs quite this much checking in to work out every day, plenty of people will find this extra layer of accountability and motivation helpful.
I also think it’s especially important to have a trainer to coach you on form when you’re starting a new routine or something riskier, like lifting very heavy weights. Another great feature in the app is that you can record yourself doing an exercise if you think your form is wrong and your coach can help correct you and give you feedback.
Who it’s not for
At $149 per month, Future costs more than some gyms but less than IRL personal training sessions. That said, it’s pricey for a fitness app, so it might not be worth the cost if you don’t need or want a hands-on personal trainer experience at home. Some otheroffer the option to just chat with a trainer rather than having video calls and regular check-ins.
Future is changing the game for what it means to work out virtually, providing an impressive coaching experience with highly qualified trainers. The monthly cost is not cheap, but it’s well worth the investment if you’re looking for a highly personalized fitness experience and accountability partner without having to leave your home.
The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.