The fitness industry has long been restricted by stereotypes of its own making: sweaty gyms blasting techno music and an often-intimidating vibe.
Like all industries, the shift from brick and mortar to digital channels is broadening the horizons. But more than virtually any other activity, the current global pandemic has accelerated this trend in fitness and nutrition; we now face adjustment to the new normal.
Who better to comment on this shifting landscape than Samantha Clayton; a sprinter representing Great Britain at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, she has since become one of the world’s most notable personal trainers, working with numerous celebrities.
However, it’s her current role as Vice President, Worldwide Sports Performance and Fitness at Herbalife Nutrition, that gives her the greatest cache. Here, she championed the shift into digital channels with the Herbalife Nutrition Fitness Portal, becoming one of the world’s most popular video workout instructors and nutrition blog writers in the process.
“I've been in this world now for a crazy 20 years and it's constantly evolving,” Clayton says. Her experience at the apex of athletics and the business side of the fitness industry gives her a telling perspective.
“The digital side of fitness has really taken off in the last 10 years,” she says. “But over the last couple of months during the pandemic, technology has become the window allowing people to stay connected.”
“Fitness has been a wonderful thing because people have been able to stay connected and channel their time into the best possible outlet, their health. It's actually going to change the fitness industry for a long time because people are realising that you really can get an effective workout at home.”
Free digital exercise portals present the future of fitness
Like all disruptions, there are winners and losers and countless gyms have shut down across the country. Herbalife Nutrition’s success lies in their extraordinary depth. Their fitness resources are all free, supported by a line of very popular nutritional products offering everything from breakfast shakes and weight management to the Herbalife24 sports nutrition ranges, developed with the world’s leading athletes for professional sportspeople.
Thanks to Clayton’s passion and expertise, Herbalife Nutrition’s exercise portal carries one of the most impressive arsenal of fitness regimes available in the world, at no cost. Their Fitness Portal boasts 162 videos and counting, allowing viewers to target skillsets, specific body regions or simply get training tips.
Their major asset is the depth of research. Clayton has brought in colleagues from around the world to form a formidable team of fitness experts. Together, they provide a wide range of expertly specialised programs for different skill levels. Workouts include dance, cardio, strength, yoga or pilates, as well as a soccer-workout with LA Galaxy star Ethan Zuback in the advanced section of the Fitness Portal.
As both a fitness and nutrition company, Herbalife Nutrition offer a spread of resources across the two most important aspects of a healthy lifestyle: diet and exercise. A benefit of their time-honoured history, tracing their roots back to 1980, Herbalife Nutrition has everything: exercise regimes, tutorials, diet and nutrition plans, supplements and tailored nutritional solutions, all backed by rigorous testing, scientific data and a world-leading Seed to Feed plan. That’s right, they are involved and ensuring quality from the time the source materials are grown until the finished product is in the packaging and being shipped to the consumer.
Partnering with the world’s best
Herbalife Nutrition has already established itself in Australian football through a partnership with Western Sydney Wanderers, and their sports nutrition range is as diverse as their beginner’s range.
Perhaps most impressively, Herbalife Nutrition’s expertise enables them to provide sports nutrition for professional athletes, some of which are designed in partnership with the world’s very best (read: the CR7Drive sports drink they developed with Cristiano Ronaldo).
Keeping it real
As a veteran of the fitness industry, putting power back into the hands (and loungerooms) of the people is something Clayton has always been passionate about. That, and foiling excuses.
“People will always find some excuse to why they don’t exercise,” she says. “They say they don’t have the time, well I’ve solved that: the exercises are five minutes or 10 minutes or 15 minutes long. A lot of people say they just don't know what to do and they can't afford a personal trainer. This portal offers them a way to train for free, in the correct way for their body.”
“Another thing people often worry about is that they don't have any equipment,” Clayton laughs.
“The great thing is your body is the best piece of equipment you have, because you can use gravity to really help you get that resistance. You can also use items around the house and during the pandemic I bought a sack of rice because I don't have weights….you just have to get creative.”
“Ultimately, the great thing is you can do a full workout on just a mat, you don't really need anything,” Clayton says.
Herbalife Nutrition’s own Healthy Active Lifestyle philosophy perhaps puts it best: ‘It’s not as hard as it sounds.’
For more information on Herbalife Nutrition, visit Herbalife.com.au