Health probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when you think about logging onto a social networking site. Atlanta-based fitness tracking app Any Distance wants to change that.
The startup announced today the launch of Active Clubs as the latest way to help people get moving at any fitness level. Users can now set up a close friends-style social network of up to 100 friends to share fitness activities. These social networks aren’t designed for competition, but rather as a motivational tool to encourage incremental healthy lifestyle changes.
“Since our 1.0 launch in 2020, one of the most frequent requests we’ve received is “Can I follow my friends?” We’re thrilled to announce that today, we’re launching this feature. We’re grateful to have the resources and focus to deliver on the vision we set out to achieve since our seed funding in 2021,” founder Luke Beard told Hypepotamus.
Unlike traditional social media and networking apps, users decide when and what fitness stats they would like to share with their friends.
Any Distance, a top performing fitness app in the App Store, started as an accessible and inclusive alternative to the competition-focused apps already on the market. Users can track and share stroller walks, wheelchair-based activities, or slower walks instead of just intense runs. Under the motto of “any distance counts,” the app is designed to encourage users to make small and incremental changes towards living a healthier lifestyle.
This is particularly important as Americans become more sedentary and as noncommunicable diseases are on the rise.
Active Clubs went into beta testing about two months ago, says Beard. The startup, which has raised $1.5 million to date, is backed by Fitt Capital, Bungalow, Shorewind Capital, and Overline VC (Atlanta).
The Next Mile
Any Distance has already garnered early fans. Over 30,000 people have downloaded the app and tracked over 7 million minutes of physical activities to date.
Part of Any Distances’ appeal is its gamified approach to working out. Achievements aren’t unlocked just by setting a new personal record. Rather, users can earn badges for trying a new sport, working out of holidays, or staying active while on vacation.
Swag is also a strong motivator, as Beard added that Any Distances’ unique sock collaborations and other collectibles have been very popular amongst early app adopters.
Beard and his co-founder Daniel Kuntz say building a consumer-facing B2C fitness app in Atlanta has been particularly rewarding. Any Distance is currently seeing its most engagement from Atlanta residents, and Beard said he is seeing more enthusiasm for homegrown B2C apps.
“Not only and I am seeing more Any Distance t-shirts [around town], I’m seeing more local founders reach out to chat consumer apps,” he added.