Priced at $295, the Peloton Guide is the newest fitness innovation from Peloton, an iconic indoor bike brand best known for its “It” bike. If you are familiar with intelligent home gyms like Mirror Tempo or Tonal devices, then these costs and space requirements may be problematic; fortunately, Peloton has developed an ingenious solution by creating an economical yet compact contrivance using AI-powered tracking camera technology that precisely tracks user motion during instructional sessions, giving all the advantages associated with smart home gyms without their spatial requirements – perfect if space requirements become an issue!
The fitness firm specifically designed Peloton Guide for use with Peloton’s strength training regimens, acting as an intelligent gadget to observe both technique and performance during these workouts. However, its role as an intelligent workout aid has yet to be fully assessed. So, I decided to embark on a trial run of this innovative workout aid and found myself immersed in an exhilarating series of reflections upon using it – read my journey with Peloton’s latest innovation in this full review!
Update, August 08
Since our original publication of this review in July, Peloton has added several innovative new features that we have yet to discuss in depth. Rep Tracking stands out as an innovative feature, and we look forward to exploring it further. Additionally, Intelligent Weight Rack’s ability to accurately track which light, medium, and heavy weights you used during a session is sure to elevate the workout experience further. Finally, Progress Tracking with Streaks & Rep Targets provide further ways for optimizing exercise routines by offering insight into individual development while setting attainable benchmarks.
Notably, Peloton has expanded its repertoire with novel class compilations. At the center of these advancements is Rep It Out Collection’s focus: optimizing repetitions for specific movements. Meanwhile, Pump Up The Volume program’s four-week curriculum gradually intensifies training loads; The Century Collection challenges you to complete 100 repetitions of any one movement within one class! To provide maximum transparency, we have maintained the original evaluation below; so you can explore initial impressions before diving deeper into these latest advancements.
How we tested the Peloton Guide
Even though various brands have recently introduced smart home gyms, their concept remains relatively novel. After reviewing various models of fitness equipment, it became apparent that I must assess the Peloton Guide separately due to its novel design; its compact nature set it apart from conventional smart gyms with just camera and AI technology as primary components.
My examination of the Peloton Guide revolved around these key facets:
- Installation: Does the setup conform with the instruction manual’s simplicity, work universally across different TV types, and how does its strength impact its performance?
- Space: How much room does this device occupy? Can it function effectively within tight quarters and accommodate individuals of various heights in its frame?
- Feedback: What sets this device apart from other smart home gyms when it comes to its unique feedback provision? Does its provided feedback show accuracy?
- User Friendliness: How well does it integrate with Peloton classes, and is its engagement process clear and comprehensible?
How the Peloton Guide Works
Let us be clear: the Peloton Guide camera affixed to a setup isn’t your average camera; its sophistication stands out. By utilizing AI technology, this device acts as an observer of your movements, creating an image of you alongside your instructor on screen. The result? A complete virtual representation of both of you. As described on their website, an ever-evolving strength training experience is created where your workout maneuvers are meticulously monitored throughout. A visual indicator known as the movement tracker icon corresponds to each action on the screen. As you engage in your exercise regimen, the tracker icon gradually fills up as you perform sets and repetitions with precision. However, to receive full credit, you must remain active throughout the entirety of a designated interval (rest periods are provided to reduce exertion). In order to collect award badges successfully, sustained participation is crucial.
After each workout session is over, the body activity feature provides you with insights, outlining which muscle groups you targeted during your session and where. Furthermore, Peloton Guide takes the initiative by suggesting classes based on areas you have yet to cover; this comprehensive approach ensures a well-balanced workout regimen while giving your muscles enough restorative time between workouts.
The voice-activated mode was an added convenience: my experience showed it worked seamlessly, eliminating any need to fumble for the remote. For instance, could easily start or pause a workout by simply saying, “OK, Peloton.” With this vocal command, you can instruct the Peloton Guide according to your preferences – such as commencing, pausing, rewinding, fast-forwarding, or concluding workouts; adjusting volume levels or personalizing on-screen statistics such as your burned calories or heart rate – you can manage all this effortlessly by just saying, “OK Peloton!” You can find a comprehensive list of voice commands online.
Concerns may arise that Peloton’s team or hackers could monitor when you’re not actively using the Peloton Guide during a workout, given that it contains a camera. But don’t fret too much: Peloton has taken proactive measures to address this concern, including installing a privacy slider screen that masks its camera when not actively in operation, as well as an audio/mic switch on its rear, which you can move leftward to deactivate its microphone (showing graphic depictions of an off microphone with crossed lines to indicate its status).
How much does the Peloton Guide cost?
Ordinarily, purchasing a Peloton bike or treadmill typically costs anywhere from $1,500 to $3,000, with even after considering recent cost cuts of $500. By contrast, the basic Peloton Guide package (including only itself) only comes in at just $295, making it a budget-conscious individual’s ideal solution. Furthermore, Peloton has provided potential buyers with a 100-day risk-free trial period so they may fully evaluate its merits before committing.
For those considering upgrading, the Guide Strength Starter package stands out, retailing at $545. This comprehensive bundle consists of three sets of Peloton dumbbells ranging in weight from 5-30 pounds, along with a workout mat and workout mat. Meanwhile, for even greater choice and customization, the Guide Power package offers six pairs of 5-50 lb dumbbells plus a mat, workout mat, and heart rate monitor; with pricing ranging between $935-$1,270 depending on the chosen weight variation options – though keeping in mind that you don’t have to use Peloton-specific dumbbells exclusively during these sessions; any weights you already possess at home can serve just as effectively.
You must have a Peloton All-Access membership in order to access Guide classes, incurring an additional expense. Peloton currently provides Guide-only members with a special rate of $24 monthly until 2022 — an attractive markdown from its regular $44 rate per month. With All-Access, you may create up to five profiles within each household account – should this already exist prior to joining Peloton Guide classes, you can also use your existing account seamlessly as you switch over.
How does the Peloton Guide work?
Peloton intelligently created the Guide to be adaptable and suitable for almost any available space with one exception–it requires a TV equipped with an HDMI port and 16:9 aspect ratio, ruling out tablets and phones as possible companion devices. At just 18 ounces and compact in dimensions, it makes an ideal companion. Package contents include remote, HDMI cable, power cable, adapter, and amount; setup involves placing it on a stable surface at least 3 to 6 feet above the ground with unobstructed WiFi speed exceeding 3 megabytes per second speed to ensure its camera faces an appropriately lit workout space before connecting it via power cable/WiFi signal/WiFi signal/adapter/amperage connection to any television set containing compatible content.
Configuration and Screen Calibration
As I chose my living room TV stand as the Guide’s location, the setup was relatively painless due to its discreet size. Once you choose a suitable spot, you can easily secure the Guide onto its magnetic mount for safety. My primary investment of time involved configuring my Peloton account and ensuring seamless synchronization with an optional Peloton heart rate monitor (currently compatible with Bluetooth heart rate monitors; Apple Watch compatibility is coming soon!). Another key step involved calibrating screen settings to achieve optimal screen fit on my TV set; this allowed me to correct any initial oversized or misaligning images seen initially on screen that may have arisen due to previous misalignments or misalignments caused by images being misalignments initially being misalignments being corrected!
Adjusting the camera’s positioning was also essential to ensure it captured my entire body within its frame. An outline would appear upon detection on screen; any lack of clear visibility would trigger a warning from my Guide that indicated I had fallen outside its boundaries.
Peloton’s Strength Class Guide makes Peloton’s selection of compatible strength classes easily accessible for selection. Classes designed specifically to pair with it can be identified by a water droplet icon in the lower right corner, and its Body Activity Guide serves as an indispensable tool. It shows the silhouette of the body with highlighted muscles from the previous week/month’s sessions. This model then guides class selection by suggesting sessions targeting muscles not worked recently – and when engaged extensively, appears more prominently shaded on the guide model.
After selecting a class, Self Mode provides you with the power to decide how you wish to view yourself during class. Options available to you include full-screen self-view with the instructor’s screen minimized on either left side, reverse arrangement, and split-screen display alongside or above the instructor for form comparison purposes. Personally, I favored split-screen mode since it allowed simultaneous viewing of myself and the instructor without distractions or disruption.
One great benefit of the Peloton Guide is its minimal spatial requirements. Ample room isn’t necessary: all you need is an unimpeded expanse measuring 4.5 by 6 feet to use this device effectively – equivalent to roughly two yoga mats side by side positioned together! Furthermore, keeping at least two to three feet between you and the TV set is better. Also, ensure a stance that works for you to prevent being out of the frame altogether.
What it’s like to use the Peloton Guide
Engaging in a class alongside the Peloton Guide can bring a unique personal training dimension, tapping AI technology to closely track your movements. This groundbreaking approach allows you to compare your form with that of the instructor during each session–although, unfortunately, the Guide itself lacks the power to correct your form directly.
Before beginning class, you can watch exercise demonstrations. When commencing the class itself, a teardrop-shaped movement icon gradually fills up as it tracks how many exercises were completed during that session. However, this depends on your Guide being able to consistently capture you within its frame during exercises–something which I didn’t not consistently achieve. I also noted that extended breaks or slower movements could cause my tracker to assume you are no longer active, leaving your movement icon incomplete. Strength training tends to adopt a slower tempo compared to cardio workouts, which defeats its purpose. When class is over, your statistics emerge, showing which exercises you performed according to what your Guide successfully recorded; greater movement tracking means increased chances of earning awards badges.
From my perspective, I experienced irregularities with the movement tracker depending on which exercise was underway. While any discrepancies could have been my responsibility alone, I remained within the camera’s field of view to prevent errors from being caused by me personally. These discrepancies might prove distracting for regular users who might instead focus on looking at themselves on-screen instead of maintaining correct form when performing push-ups, for instance.
Classes Available on Peloton Guide
Existing members of the Peloton community who have previously taken strength training classes can rest assured that they will continue to have access to live and on-demand workouts with top instructors such as Adrian Williams, Rad Lopez, Selena Samuela, Andy Speer, and Robin Arzon. However, please keep in mind that they have been tailored specifically to use with Peloton Guide; using regular apps would mean no access to specific metrics exclusive to this device.
Strength Roll Call offers live classes seven days a week at the same hour from Monday through Friday, then organized into five-class mini-programs exclusive to Peloton Guide users before becoming openly shared across Peloton’s community. By fully engaging with this feature, users are better able to utilize Floor Bootcamp and Split Programs app programs, which utilize heavier weights with the aim of muscle building.
While the Peloton Guide offers other workout modes, such as yoga and HIIT, they are not specifically Guide exercises. Peloton representatives did allude to potential plans to broaden the Peloton Guide classes further down the road; for now, though, its main feature remains strength-training workouts with an enhanced experience.
Advantages and Disadvantages of the Peloton Guide
As is typical for any fitness apparatus, the Peloton Guide comes with its own set of advantages and drawbacks.
- Space adaptability is one of its strongest points – fitting perfectly into different environments such as living rooms, basements, or apartments is made easy thanks to this versatile piece of fitness equipment.
- Peloton’s low price point makes it an appealing option for those curious about it but reluctant to invest more than $1,000 at once.
- One drawback involves not being able to easily determine whether you’re within the frame during class unless you keep looking at your screen continuously.
- If your pace differs from that anticipated by the tracker, it could misperceive it as inactivity, leaving the movement icon incompletely filled out.
How Does it compare to Similar Gadgets?
Peloton Guide may be the first cost-effective AI home gym available, but larger home gym options exist as well. One such large smart home gym competitor is Tempo Move; its smaller sibling, Tempo Studio. Like its bigger sibling, it comes equipped with weights and storage stands. Although priced higher (retailing at $495), both fit below the cost of the Guide Strength Starter package.
Tempo Move stands out in artificial intelligence technology by offering more advanced features than the Peloton Guide. These capabilities include smartphone integration and personalized training experience with form correction and weight progression cues – setting it apart as an all-encompassing personal trainer experience. However, with some minor adjustments, I believe the Peloton Guide may reach its level of excellence as well.
Final verdict: Is the Gadget worth it?
Peloton Guide can be an invaluable asset to newcomers to strength training, serving as an effective aid in learning the correct form and assessing technique – much like having your own personal trainer without the price tag! Prior to selecting your workout, you get a comprehensive rundown of all available exercises; any confusion about the execution of certain moves can be overcome by watching instructor demonstrations before starting (this feature can also be found through mobile apps.).
Uninterrupted visual connection
Attracting additional attention, however, is the ability to maintain an uninterrupted visual connection with the instructor throughout the class, either appearing side-by-side or stacked on top as per your preferred view. This unique feature provides real-time evaluation of how closely your form matches that of the instructor for prompt adjustments as needed.
While my experience was invaluable, I did long for some kind of notification or alert system that could highlight improper movements. Visual representation between students and instructors is helpful, but having some type of notification that signals improper form would be extremely valuable.
Body Activity Tracker
Peloton Guide’s Body Activity Tracker helps improve workout programming. Delineated by a highlighted body outline, this visual displays targeted muscles and levels of exertion for each workout session – helping you plan each subsequent one meticulously, whether that means stacking shorter sessions together or developing an intensive weekly regimen. If unsure, Peloton will suggest specific classes as helpful resources to steer your choices.
Notably, I was amazed at the AI-enabled camera’s motivational impact. While working out on a mobile device with the Peloton app may result in occasionally missed repetitions or compromised form during workout sessions, knowing I wouldn’t receive full credit during Peloton Guide sessions for a subpar effort like missed reps or compromised form motivated me to push harder – creating an element of competition between reps while encouraging you to keep pushing through every repetition. It felt almost like having an inbuilt workout partner cheering you on while encouraging self-competition while encouraging you through every repetition – something no other workout partner could provide.
Finally, if any lingering doubts exist regarding its suitability for you personally, know that you can test it for 30 days before making a decision.
Can the Peloton Guide Count Your Reps for You?
Indeed, the fitness company has recently introduced numerous additional functionalities to the Peloton Guide. Among these enhancements is the incorporation of rep counting.
Does the Peloton Guide Have Form Feedback or Form Correction? Can the Peloton Guide Correct My Form?
Peloton Guide does not offer any feedback or correction, yet you still benefit from showing a video of yourself alongside your instructor on a screen – an ability that allows for prompt identification of any changes to your form and adjustment as soon as they arise.
How Do I Control the Peloton Guide?
You can control Peloton Guide in two ways – remote control or voice command – both being effective ways of controlling it. After initial usage for just a few minutes, its controls should become relatively self-explanatory, and during classes, the primary functions for which you would use either would be pausing the session or changing display mode.
Voice control is currently a “beta” feature. To enable it, simply utter two to three sentences so the Peloton system can become acquainted with your voice before activating it on the Peloton Guide by saying, for example, “OK, Peloton, Pause class.”
Once voice control is in place, it should only respond to you and ignore other users. We conducted tests on this functionality and, in brief trials, found that the Peloton Guide exclusively acknowledged instructions from its initial configuration user and disregarded any others who attempted to configure their devices.
What Classes Are Available in The Peloton Guide?
Peloton Guide now provides access to an expansive selection of class types, enabling you to take part in strength, yoga, cycling, running, and cardio classes while connected to a television. However, please be aware that currently, only Strength classes utilize Movement Tracker overlay and progress tracking features; all other disciplines simply show class content and timer display without additional features.
Peloton Guide also allows participants to engage with both live classes of all kinds as well as on-demand ones.
Is There a Leaderboard on the Peloton Guide? Can I High-Five My Friends on The Peloton Guide?
One notable feature is the Peloton Guide’s leaderboard, which displays participants within its class. However, its leaderboard functionality only reveals individuals participating simultaneously through that platform – as confirmed through our tests! Our testing revealed that those engaging in class on Peloton Guide did not appear on the leaderboards of those using Peloton Bike+ and vice versa.
Can You Use an Apple Watch with The Peloton Guide as a Heart Rate Monitor?
Unfortunately, pairing an Apple Watch with a Peloton Guide is not possible, as evidenced by their official FAQ page confirming this point. They state that Apple Watch(r) compatibility for heart rate tracking and Strive Score calculation is not supported; however, alternatives such as the Peloton Heart Rate band or any Bluetooth-enabled heart rate monitor should serve as viable replacements.
What Are the Specs of The Peloton Guide?
The Peloton Guide has Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity and features a front-facing 12MP camera. It can establish connections using WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac; however, it’s important to note that hidden networks are not supported.
In terms of its physical specifications, the Peloton Guide boasts dimensions of 166mm × 64mm × 42mm / 6.5′′ L × 2.5′′ W × 1.7′′ H and carries a weight of 18oz. With the mounting plate included, the weight increases to 22.4 oz.
For operating the Peloton Guide, the accompanying remote necessitates 2 AAA batteries.
Can I Use an Ethernet Cable with The Peloton Guide?
Peloton Guide stands out as an unusual device in that it lacks an Ethernet port; only a USB-C port exists, designed solely to supply power. Furthermore, its manual explicitly states that wired networks will not be supported.
Is the Peloton Guide Worth the Price?
This topic was raised earlier in the discussion. Current capabilities are determined by certain factors. Nonetheless, Peloton has expressed plans for adding features like rep counting and form feedback in future releases.
Can You Use the Peloton Guide with A Peloton Bike or Tread?
One frequently-asked-about scenario entails connecting the Peloton Guide to either a Bike or Tread and using those devices as screens; unfortunately, this scenario appears not feasible as its HDMI port requires it only to be connected with regular television or monitor sets.
Can I Use the Camera on My Peloton Bike or Tread for The Peloton Guide? Is the Peloton Guide Compatible with The Peloton Bike+?
As another frequently raised query, some individuals are curious as to whether the new Peloton Bike+ can utilize its enhanced camera for controlling and connecting directly to a Peloton Guide device, though these inquiries have no validity – the Peloton Guide must operate using its own separate standalone device connected directly to an independent television screen in order for it to function effectively. Unfortunately, however, the response remains negative: only using its distinct standalone device allows it to function successfully.
Do You Need Specific Weights for The Peloton Guide? Do Only Peloton Weights Work with It?
Peloton can accommodate virtually every kind of weight. Since Peloton does not track repetitions or weight usage, your choice is irrelevant to their program.
Does the Guide Work with Android?
Peloton Guide software runs autonomously on its device, eliminating the need for any additional software such as Android or iOS mobile apps; all functions are contained within Peloton Guide itself and projected onto television screens for display.
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