The coronavirus pandemic is changing how people do everything -- including how they workout. With gyms closed, people are turning to workout apps to help give them inspiration and motivation to stay active. With daily exercise routines now looking different, Nike launched the "Living Room Cup" to give people at home during quarantine access to the inspiration they would not have previously had otherwise.
Selected athletes post workouts to their Instagram page, inviting people at home to match -- or if they can -- beat the athletes' best respective times. Nike hopes it gives people that extra jolt of energy to push themselves further. It also gives everyone an inside look at how some of the world's top athletes stay in such good shape.
Cristiano Ronaldo and Rory McIlroy have already participated, while Caster Semenya, Virgil Van Dijk, Alex Ovechkin and Simona Halep are will be featured in the future. All of the exercise challenges can be found on Nike's website.
Nike is trying to give people a way to stay connected in some way during the lockdown and, as a bonus, those connections are coming from professional athletes, using the universal love of sport to give athletes a unique opportunity to connect with their fans.
"We are using the strength of our digital ecosystem to create connections with millions of consumers who want to maintain their physical and mental well-being while at home," a Nike spokesperson said.
Heidi O'Neill, President, Consumer and Marketplace at Nike said that the company believes that people "are seeking a connection to community."
"At Nike, we believe sport makes us better, happier, healthier, and more connected around the world," O'Neill said. "That vision has not changed even during this unprecedented moment. And we are accelerating our efforts, using the strength of our digital ecosystem to provide consumers with tools, motivation, coaching and inspiration to continue their sport journey from home and help all athletes maintain their mental and physical well-being."
Nike noticed at the start of the COVID-19 outbreak that use of their workout apps was increasing significantly, showing just how much people want workout guides and a way to track their progress. That helped lead to the launch of the Living Room Cup, with the twist of having athletes in on it.
"We're showcasing the kinds of workouts athletes tell us they need most right now – yoga sessions, mindfulness, stretching, big workouts for small spaces," a Nike spokesperson said.
The digital workout series began on April 5th.