If ever you’ve needed an incentive to exercise, a new app could give you a much-needed boost to get active.
The British app Sweatcoin tracks your activity and pays you accordingly in its digital currency, which can be used to purchase physical trainers and exercise classes.
For every 1,000 steps walked, users earn one sweatcoin (SWC). In the app’s store, an 80 per cent discount on Vivobarefoot shoes currently cost 250 SWC, while a Clubbercise exercise class costs 45 SWC.
If 2,000 steps equates to roughly a mile, this means you’d have to walk around 125 miles to earn the discount for the shoes and 22.5 miles for the class.
“This whole business is pegged to making movement valuable,” he told Reuters. “Eventually, sweatcoin is going to have a rate of exchange tied to the British pound.”
The app appeals to users’ competitive streaks by ranking them against others in terms of who has taken the most steps that day, or generated, spent or received the most sweatcoins. There is also the option to donate the currency to partnered charities.
Four London start-ups have signed up to Sweatcoin as part of an employee rewards program offering extra days off, subsidised healthy meals or free massages in exchange for sweatcoins. Fomenko added that health insurers might pay to take sweatcoins off the market to reward users for their physical activity.