- Founders: Dariuš Butkevičius and Modestas Jurčius
- Founded in: September 2021
- Employees: 3
- Money raised: €50,000 in a pre-accelerator program.
- Ultimate goal: Implementing two-way communication between user and virtual trainer across the board in all online fitness platforms.
Online fitness sessions lack interactivity. There isn’t a trainer that sees and corrects our mistakes, or that motivates us to keep up and do our exercises right. But FittyAI has got us covered and has developed software to solve this problem. It can be integrated into existing platforms and it is able to give real-time feedback to the end user on how the exercise is being done. Innovation Origins spoke to Dariuš Butkevičius, CEO and co-founder of FittyAI.
What does FittyAI do?
“We offer a virtual trainer that is easy to integrate into existing fitness platforms of any kind. In less than a day, our software can be embedded into the platform, providing a virtual trainer that is able to track exercisers, give feedback and a sense of engagement as well as check on a user’s form. In other words, it fulfills all the tasks a trainer would perform.”
How does the software work?
“Being an AI company, the software processes the input coming from the camera through computer vision. Then, it applies machine learning algorithms and heuristics to stimulate engagement with the user and to check how they are doing a particular exercise. We can also create insights by comparing performance at that moment with previous training sessions or with the beginning of the ongoing one. It is possible to motivate the user too. We collect all data, but then it’s up to the fitness platforms to choose how to present this feedback, either at the end of the session or in real-time via voice or visuals.”
How did you come up with this idea?
“I’ve been into sports ever since I was a kid. I did karate for ten years, and that’s when I realized how important the trainers’ role is and tracking form, as well as the possibility of spotting potential injuries before they occur. During te time of COVID-19, I started training online, and with my other fitness-related start-up, we also had to switch to online classes. That’s why I understood how important it is for people to have constant two-way communication with their trainers. During the lockdown, more people did sport online, and the number of injuries rose accordingly. All these things came together and I thought that it was time to bring this kind of communication into the online fitness experience too.”
What is the main challenge you are facing?
“Convincing investors that online fitness is a growing market, as they don’t see the potential of it yet. We believe that this market will stay relevant for a long time and that it was growing even before COVID-19. The biggest growth is expected to happen in the US, so it is easier for me to be in touch with investors over there. The same applies to other potential customers.”
“In two years’ time, we’d like to be part of ten online fitness platforms, providing them with virtual trainer functions. In addition to that, we expect to be further ahead with the development and testing of two-way communication on all platforms.”
In the second picture: the software; in the third picture: FittyAI’s founders
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