gymsym is the brainchild of Nenad and Dane Dobre. RDA Sydney first met the brothers at the Liverpool Hackathon in 2018 when the brothers created an app to guide non-English speaking people around the Liverpool Hospital. They went on to win that competition.
Working out solo at his local gym, Dane recalls how frustrating it was to monitor his body alignment. This is important in maximizing workout effectiveness and preventing injury. He tried numerous wearable devices but none of them monitored symmetry, imbalances or progress.
In addition, he noted the difficulty that gym managers had in monitoring use of their equipment. The cost of purchasing new equipment that can be monitored remotely through connecting to the internet is prohibitive.
There are solutions for businesses (gym managers) and for individuals. For businesses, gymsym allows new or old equipment to become connected to the Internet of Things. gymsym solutions can be directly embedded into new equipment or retrofitted into existing equipment. The devices will capture detailed workout data of every exercise, set and rep. Every piece of equipment can be monitored so that gyms know what is being used, who is using it and how.
Individuals can simply download and setup the app, then tap on at any gymsym enabled equipment. Once a person has finished their workout they will receive a detailed report.
In short, gymsym is of benefit to individuals working out and also to gym managers.
gymsym have validated the concept, assisted in part by a Minimum Viable Product grant from Jobs for NSW and attracted interest from a number of gyms in Australia and overseas. They are currently in discussions with Western Sydney University to trial the device in their gyms.
gymsym spoke openly about some of the challenges they are facing. Key among these are the difficulty in accessing high cost of software development in Australia. They have tried a number of different ways to access software engineering expertise but the cost has been prohibitive, particularly for this team of two who have left their regular jobs to pursue this entrepreneurial project.
This challenge is further complicated by developers in overseas markets who do have access to software engineering expertise at much cheaper or subsidized rates.
gymsym have been based at Launch Pad Werrington since 2018, part of the inaugural cohort entering the Startup SydWest accelerator program. This is a 12-month program that gives them access to working space, mentoring, business advice and targeted training sessions.
Startups are immersed in an expansive innovation network providing easy connections to mentors, potential customers and co-founders, investors, industry experts and collaborators for research and development.
The extended period of 12 months for the accelerator program, as compared to normal 3 or 6 month programs, provides a much deeper experience, allowing adequate time for technical development and international market connectivity.
Dane and Nenad are convinced from the feedback they have received from gym managers and users that there is a market for their product. They are working harder than ever to deliver their product and hope to be able to break into international markets such as the U.S.
This post was originally published on Regional Development Australia Sydney.