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UNITING THE WORLD OF FITNESS
Health Club Management

Health Club Management

features

People profile: Dan Morgan

Founder and creator of SpeedoFit

Published in Health Club Management 2016 issue 5
Morgan’s swimming app now has 400,000 users worldwide
Morgan’s swimming app now has 400,000 users worldwide
It’s like Strava for swimmers. You can set goals, track swims, challenge friends and connect with fellow swimmers

“Back in 2009, the websites of London-based pool operators weren’t great,” says Dan Morgan, founder of the world’s most popular swimming app. 

“I couldn’t fathom why – at a time when even Transport for London had made its travel information easy to get hold of – there was nowhere to find out information about swimming. Not being able to access timetables might only seem a small barrier, but it only takes small barriers to prevent people from doing exercise.”

Rather than lament the lack of a service, he set out to provide one. The iPhone 2 had just been launched and its capabilities were transforming a number of services – a fact that hadn’t gone unnoticed by Morgan. 

“The iPhone was becoming a part of people’s lives,” he says. “Developers were creating apps people could access from their pockets, so I decided to find out how it worked and create something using the iOS platform.”

In at the deep end
Morgan’s idea for an app was simple: allow people to find a pool and book a swim. There was only one problem – he didn’t know anything about coding.

“Rather than going back to college to learn to code, I bought some books and got my head around it,” he says. “It was an intense learning experience – it took a year and had me dreaming in iOS code – but by the end of that year, I had the nucleus of an app.”

Morgan entered his app, which he named SplashPath, into UK broadcaster Channel 4’s competition for young tech entrepreneurs. He won and secured £70,000-worth of funding for the project. This enabled him to employ a developer, improve the app’s functionality and bring SplashPath to market. 

As well offering a pool locator and timetables, the app is a motivational tool. “It’s like Strava for swimmers,” says Morgan. “You can set goals, track swims, challenge friends, comment and connect with fellow swimmers.”

At this stage, most people manually log their swim data into the app. But, Morgan says: “If you use the Speedo Shine – a tracker you wear on your arm, manufactured by Misfit – when you get out of the pool it synchs with SpeedoFit.”

Going global
In 2012, SplashPath was rebranded SpeedoFit after a chance meeting with representatives of the swimwear giant. Having a globally recognised name has since aided the app’s growth and it now has more than 400,000 users globally – from the US to China.

“We have a global pool database, so anyone in any country where they speak English can use the app. That said, in addition to English, the app is translated into French and simplified Chinese,” he says.

The next step, according to Morgan, is to literally take Speedofit into the pool. “We’re hoping the next Apple Watch is waterproof,” he says. “That will open new opportunities such as tracking heart rates and automatically charting swimming distances.” ?

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Dan Morgan learnt to code to resolve his swimming problem
Dan Morgan , Founder and creator of SpeedoFit,Dan Morgan, swimming, SpeedoFit
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features

People profile: Dan Morgan

Founder and creator of SpeedoFit

Published in Health Club Management 2016 issue 5
Morgan’s swimming app now has 400,000 users worldwide
Morgan’s swimming app now has 400,000 users worldwide
It’s like Strava for swimmers. You can set goals, track swims, challenge friends and connect with fellow swimmers

“Back in 2009, the websites of London-based pool operators weren’t great,” says Dan Morgan, founder of the world’s most popular swimming app. 

“I couldn’t fathom why – at a time when even Transport for London had made its travel information easy to get hold of – there was nowhere to find out information about swimming. Not being able to access timetables might only seem a small barrier, but it only takes small barriers to prevent people from doing exercise.”

Rather than lament the lack of a service, he set out to provide one. The iPhone 2 had just been launched and its capabilities were transforming a number of services – a fact that hadn’t gone unnoticed by Morgan. 

“The iPhone was becoming a part of people’s lives,” he says. “Developers were creating apps people could access from their pockets, so I decided to find out how it worked and create something using the iOS platform.”

In at the deep end
Morgan’s idea for an app was simple: allow people to find a pool and book a swim. There was only one problem – he didn’t know anything about coding.

“Rather than going back to college to learn to code, I bought some books and got my head around it,” he says. “It was an intense learning experience – it took a year and had me dreaming in iOS code – but by the end of that year, I had the nucleus of an app.”

Morgan entered his app, which he named SplashPath, into UK broadcaster Channel 4’s competition for young tech entrepreneurs. He won and secured £70,000-worth of funding for the project. This enabled him to employ a developer, improve the app’s functionality and bring SplashPath to market. 

As well offering a pool locator and timetables, the app is a motivational tool. “It’s like Strava for swimmers,” says Morgan. “You can set goals, track swims, challenge friends, comment and connect with fellow swimmers.”

At this stage, most people manually log their swim data into the app. But, Morgan says: “If you use the Speedo Shine – a tracker you wear on your arm, manufactured by Misfit – when you get out of the pool it synchs with SpeedoFit.”

Going global
In 2012, SplashPath was rebranded SpeedoFit after a chance meeting with representatives of the swimwear giant. Having a globally recognised name has since aided the app’s growth and it now has more than 400,000 users globally – from the US to China.

“We have a global pool database, so anyone in any country where they speak English can use the app. That said, in addition to English, the app is translated into French and simplified Chinese,” he says.

The next step, according to Morgan, is to literally take Speedofit into the pool. “We’re hoping the next Apple Watch is waterproof,” he says. “That will open new opportunities such as tracking heart rates and automatically charting swimming distances.” ?

Sign up here to get HCM's weekly ezine and every issue of HCM magazine free on digital.
https://www.leisureopportunities.co.uk/images/748409_374492.jpg
Dan Morgan learnt to code to resolve his swimming problem
Dan Morgan , Founder and creator of SpeedoFit,Dan Morgan, swimming, SpeedoFit
Latest News
Boutique boxing gym brand BXR London will open its second full-service club in London next ...
Latest News
Entries are now open for the annual UK Active Awards. Following two years of unparalleled ...
Latest News
People with early-stage Parkinson’s should do regular exercise to slow down the progression of the ...
Latest News
Hybrid fitness platform FitLab has closed its Series A financing, bringing total capital raised to ...
Latest News
Boutique chain Trib3 will become one of the first fitness operators to establish a presence ...
Latest News
At-home fitness brand NordicTrack from iFIT has launched what it says are the first voice-controlled, ...
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The Workforce State of Mind Survey, now in its second year, has begun to gather ...
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Featured supplier news
Featured supplier news: Quoox lowers the barrier-to-entry for its flagship CRM system
Known for its innovation and for providing one of the most comprehensive gym and fitness facility software management products on the market, Quoox is causing a stir with its new pricing model.
Featured operator news
Featured operator news: Innovative experience TAGactive launched at Everyone Active
Everyone Active opened its first TAGactive Arena at Lammas Leisure Centre on Bank Holiday Monday, January 3.
Featured operator news
Featured operator news: Double Olympic Champion Rebecca Adlington breaks ground ahead of new Rainham Leisure Centre
Everyone Active has got the New Year off to a flying start as it begins work on the brand new Rainham Leisure Centre.
Video Gallery
Total Vibration Solutions / Floors 4 Gyms / TVS Sports Surfaces
Mindbody, Inc
Sport Alliance GmbH
Company profiles
Company profile: énergie Fitness
Empowered Brands, owner of the énergie fitness business, has leveraged more than 18 years of ...
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Company profile: Indigofitness Ltd
We Create Training Spaces! We've been designing and delivering high quality training spaces for almost ...
Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
Directory
Whole body cryotherapy
Art of Cryo: Whole body cryotherapy
Architects/designers
Zynk Design Consultants: Architects/designers
Wearable technology solutions
MyZone: Wearable technology solutions
trade associations
International SPA Association - iSPA: trade associations
Spa software
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Lockers/interior design
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Bilborough, Nottingham
Bilborough College
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Diary dates
01-03 Feb 2022
Coventry Building Society Arena, Coventry, United Kingdom
Diary dates
01 Mar 2022
Live Love Spa HQ, Tustin, United States
Diary dates
07-10 Apr 2022
Exhibition Centre , Cologne, Germany
Diary dates
15-16 Jun 2022
ExCeL London, London, United Kingdom
Diary dates
01-07 Dec 2022
tbc, Dunedin, New Zealand
Diary dates
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