As someone who exercises and travels regularly I have encountered a repeating issue over the last year. I’m going to explore this into products.
Problem identified - yoga/exercise mats at gyms are dirty and poorly organised.
Hotel gyms, cruise ship gyms, gym gyms, the yoga mats are filthy, they smell (indication of sweat/bacteria) and they are usually in a disorganised pile.
It’s a poor experience.
But I still go and I still use the gym so objectively I'm not sure how big a problem this is for me.
It does - damage the brand for me.
The main cause of this is obviously other users (not folding & cleaning)/ gym staff (organising)
I was thinking about the problems here from the gym side too.
Are these issues expensive? Unkown
If on a cruise ship - cleanliness is paramount.
High end gym - cleanliness is paramount.
Low end gym - Health & Safety is paramount - high volume, high chance of illness
Hotel - cleanliness is paramount.
There is a theme here to me.
Also - it’s hard to tell users to clean and organise.
Have signs telling people to clean and fold and organise
Result - probably poor
Have a video play on repeat showing that customers need to clean mats and organise them. I like this but feel like faff and doesn’t solve problem.
Is there a machine/ can a machine be created that rolls mats, drops them into a basket and sanitises them at the same time?
I can see it having UV lights which kill bacteria as it rolls them. Possibly even spray them with alcohol or cleaning solution. Top fed? Collect mats in a basket?
Investment/ROI - TAM
Boutique margins are stretched but imagine that this could be priced per use, sell with a block use package upfront. That way buy-in needed from locations could be lower.
The uneasy part of this product is that the marginal use is tiny. Let's model how much use it could get and so maybe what price would make this worthwhile
Let's assume a 300 day year.
Cruise ship - 10 mats, used 2x per day
20 uses per ship per day on cruises
6000 uses per year
410 cruise ships in the world
Total potential uses per year = 2.46 million
Hotel - 5 mats, used 3x per day
15 uses per hotel per day
3000 uses per year
200,000 5* hotels in the world
Total potential uses per year = 600 million
Yoga studio/gym gym - 20 mats, used 7x per day
140 uses per gym per day
42000 uses per year
201,000 health & fitness clubs in the world
Total potential uses per year = 8.44 billion
I'm not sure what I was expecting. These numbers are ludicrous to me.
I'm pretty sure this thing needs to exist, if so, the market is enormous.
The trick would be making it simple enough to use, whilst satisfying enough adjacent jobs to be invested in.
So upon thinking "I'm pretty sure this thing needs to exist, if so, the market is enormous." I googled it. I should probably start every product brain dump with some research.
The only thing I found was this - Matsana
The company looks pretty dead, and upon first glance doesn't fulfil enough of what I was thinking so phew.
Anyway, if this post has inspired you - take it, run with it, and feel free to hmu if you need testers or ideas. I would love to help any way I can.