A revolutionary app to allow fitness enthusiasts to meet, interact and cheer each other on from the comfort of their own devices
To conduct extensive primary and secondary research, design and build a clickable prototype for an application that will allow people to search for and find workout partners specific to their location/gym/sport/etc.
People struggle to find fitness partners who go to the same gym, or play the same sports as them and have similar goals.
The Final* Result
*Pending future updates
Apps such as Fit Flick and Bvddy (no that's not a typo, and no, no one actually knows how to pronounce the app name) have attempted something similar before to limited success. Both apps struggled to attain sizable user bases and often lost developer support leaving the apps to slowly collapse beneath their users.
The first step became understanding exactly what steps users would use to achieve their goals through the application from Sign-up, through matching with other users, and onto starting conversations with their matches.
While these processes, especially Matching would go on to receive updates as feedback from user testing was received, this was the initial red route structure.
Sign-up/ Profile Creation
The main struggle faced in this section of the app was allowing users a way to input the frankly vast array of sport options available throughout the world without limiting their options. Some apps, such as Fit Flick, attempted the use of check boxes, but this always resulted in either an insanely long list of options or many options being left off the list.
My solution was to allow users to type in their sport option, from which the system would auto fill suggestions. The submit button would then allow the user to submit a sport option even if it was not listed within the app's available options.
User testing provided insight into many aspects of the sign-up and profile creation process.
Chief amongst these insights was the addition of social media sign-up options. In addition, users were frustrated at having to fill in their name on both the sign-up page as well as the profile creation page, so I decided to have the app autofill those boxes on the profile creation page.
Testing also revealed that instead of tapping the submit button to log their sport selections, users were more accustomed to tapping return/done on their keyboard. I also removed the downward arrow, as this confused users, leading them to believe they would open a drop down menu rather than a text input box.
The profile by which users view potential match options was heavily inspired by dating apps such as Tinder and Bumble. It was my hope that despite having similar designs, the name and branding of Fitness Family would prevent users from thinking of it as a dating app for fitness focused individuals.
Users expressed a dislike for the one profile at a time view of the initial design. Especially since the goal of Fitness Family differs from that of the dating apps it was based on, users didn't see any reason they should have to immediately decide once and for all whether to match with or skip on each profile. Allowing users to see multiple profiles and select which to view more information on was suggested by a few users as an alternative.
In addition, visual feedback as to whether the user wished to match with or skip on a profile was missing upon initial testing and thus added in the forms seen to the right.
Learnings & Next Steps
In hindsight it seems that while taking inspiration on a conceptual level from dating apps to create a fitness enthusiast matching application should have been where the mimicry ended.
It has come to my attention that while my user profiles contain all the necessary information for users to make informed decisions on who they would and wouldn't match with, the design could stand to be improved. Specific next steps would include but not be limited to highlighting shared activities between users, testing different layouts of the information overall within the profile, and improving the hierarchy of information through the use of both text size and color.
Unfortunately due to time constraints on this project, I was unable to fully explore my complete vision for Fitness Family. In continuing this project, as I hope to, I will focus the majority of my efforts on the creation of the app's Newsfeed feature. This feature will allow mutual matches to share their fitness exploits in a semi-public format and allow for more direct support. It is my hope that the addition of this feature will further encourage current users to continue using the application long term, as well as to entice new users to switch from other similar platforms such as Strava.