Fitness brands are helping users harness their hormones to super charge workouts.
Following a first wave of brands that tracked periods and decoded the impact of hormones on overall wellbeing—focusing on things like skin, mood and sleep—the next surge is highlighting hormonal health as a key consideration for optimized physical fitness.
Nike wants to help its users harness the power of their periods to optimize physical fitness. In February 2021, the company launched the (Cycle)Sync workout collection on the Nike Training Club App. The collection, which was designed in collaboration with women’s physiology expert Dr. Stacy Sims, includes workouts, nutrition advice and expert tips adapted to the different phases of the menstrual cycle.
London-based fitness club One LDN recently is also teaching people how fitness is informed by menstrual cycles. Launched earlier this year, The Curve is an eight-week program that biohacks hormones to enhance performance and recovery. “Hormone fluctuations have powerful effects on female bodies throughout the menstrual cycle, which directly affects energy levels, muscle and joint function, metabolism, vulnerability to injuries, appetite, sleep quality, and even skin health. However, hardly any women look at it as part of their regular exercise programming,” explained Evgenia Koroleva, founder of One LDN.
Aavia is helping people who menstruate better understand the link between their periods and physical fitness. The hormonal health startup launched a free app in January 2021 offering daily education and personalized insights—including how menstrual cycles and hormones affect elements of physical health like muscle tone and energy levels.
Peloton is turning its attention to obstetrics and gynecology. In February, the fitness company announced the addition of an OBGYN and a perinatal psychiatrist to its health and wellness advisory council, which helps inform key areas of the company’s business. The two additions are a notable indication of the growing focus on female reproductive health in the fitness space—especially considering that the other five council members specialize in cardiovascular health, pulmonary health, sports medicine and neuroscience.
These offerings point to the next evolution of the health tracking movement, reflecting a growing desire not just for individual health data, but for personalized and actionable fitness plans built off of that data.
Main image courtesy of Nike