As some of you might know, one of my fields of interest is computer science, and web development in particular.
I recently had an idea for a project I want to work on, and I’d like some input from you guys. So basically, there’s a few people in my city that offer a coaching service. Some of them are bodybuilders, some are just really jacked guys (and some of them suck and you wouldn’t even say they train, but that’s another story). What I mostly noticed, hearing from some of their clients or speaking to them directly, is their method for keeping in contact with clients and keeping track of progress is pretty basic and doesn’t involve lots of technology. Absolutely fine, don’t get me wrong.
However, I started thinking how a web app could possibly make this process handier, easier to handle, and overall make for a better experience for clients and coach alike. In other words, I want to create an app that automates parts of the coaching process. At worst, this’ll be coding practice for me, and at best someone might actually find it useful someday.
I would like to gather some ideas from you guys. What do you think would make such an app useful? What features would it need to have? I’m particularly interested in the opinion of people that have themselves trained clients in their life, even just a small group of friends, up to a real business with hundreds of clients (although I suspect there’s not a whole lot of people that have done that, on here). Same goes for guys that have been under a coach’s wing: what did the experience look like? Was any technology involved in communication and keeping track of progress?
I’ll give a quick outline of what it looks like in my mind. I’m still through the earliest phases of designing this project, so this is just an idea.
From the coach’s viewpoint, they’d have an interface which allows them to add new client accounts first and foremost. A new account can be filled in with all the details about the person: here my idea would be to give maximum flexibility about what stats we’re wanting to even keep a record of.
A client can have several goals, aka stats we’re keeping track of, and when in the process of adding a new profile, the trainer can add fields to that profile specifically tracking those. A client might want to lose n pounds, or bring up their bench 1rm by m pounds, or even increase their pullup rep max. Moreover, the coach will have an option to set up recurring check ins with that client every x days or weeks.
Finally, a plan can be compiled (including training program and diet), which will be rendered to the user as a pdf file or other format.
When the client logs in, let’s say on the day when the next check in is due, they’ll see a form they have to fill in. The fields in the form will be whatever they are working on improving. So if they had a weight loss goal, they might be presented with a button to upload progress pics and a text field to type in the new weight.
When the check in is submitted, their coach will receive a notification showing the data. Long term progress on any of the goal can be graphed and shown in a compact way over time, or can be looked at in the context of a single check in. Following that, edits to the plan can be made and will show as an updated version of the program to the client.
The coach will also have a list of their clients and a panel that shows those whose check ins are due in a few days, so they can manage their workload. Other features for communication in-between check ins would also be present so clients can ask questions about the plan at any time. An optional function to log workouts would also be available, if so is requested, and all that info can be automatically graphed as well and shown to either the client or the coach.
This is the general outline of my idea. Let me know if you have any thoughts or suggestions, and if you think something like this could actually be useful in real life.