Virtual reality (VR) workouts are the future of fitness, and Facebook’s Oculus Quest is at the front of this game-changing, life-saving trend.
The Oculus Quest, a VR headset developed by Facebook in 2019, runs on an Android-based operating system. One of the most popular games on the headset is Supernatural, a fitness and wellness game that launched in March 2020. Players have access to hundreds of workouts in which they swing their arms at targets, box non-playable characters, and stretch and meditate to popular music in fantastical VR environments. An Oculus headset is currently priced at $299, and membership to Supernatural costs $179 per year – a bargain when the average gym membership was $507 per year in 2021, according to Run Repeat.
Chris Milk, the Co-Founder of Supernatural, says that Supernatural is more than just a workout app. To some, it’s been a lifesaver. Milk recounts not only the copious amount of social engagement Supernatural has received on its’ Facebook page, but the emotional testimony from the VR community. Many users were individuals who needed to lose weight for their health but were too intimidated or anxious to go to the gym. By creating a home workout that can be done privately, Milk says that Supernatural is a good fit for anyone who aspires to lose weight.
"I never got a 'This Kanye West video saved my life' comment before," Milk tells National Public Radio. "If fitness has rejected you, we welcome you."
The Oculus also offers other workout programs, such as FitXR and HOLOFIT. The latter provides users with the opportunity to row, cycle, run, and dance, and it can be used with exercise equipment. FitXR has workout classes that allow consumers to engage in high intensity interval workouts, along with dance or boxing classes. In the future, Milk says, he hopes to have some of these elements integrated into Supernatural, such as online virtual reality exercise classes and knee sensors that allow players to kick.