May 2024
Ronaldo crashes the app store with launch of new wellness, fitness and health app, Erakulis

05 Apr 2024

Portugese footballer, Cristiano Ronaldo, has launched a health and wellness app that harmonises advice on fitness, nutrition and mental wellness in one seamless experience.

Renowned for his healthy habits and routines, which have afforded him a long and successful footballing career at the top of the game – he is now 39 – Ronaldo has provided guidance for the app known as Erakulis. Marketed as a lifestyle revolution, Erakulis takes a holistic approach to health and wellbeing.

"As a professional athlete, discipline, focus, and balance have been key to my success on the field,” says Ronaldo. “The countless hours of training, attention to nutrition, and mental preparation have played a crucial role in my journey and we've added these features into Erakulis."

The app, which launched on 3 April, is thought to have broken the app store, which crashed a short time after the launch. Ronaldo has 627 million followers on Instagram and pre-launch marketing for Erakulis racked up over 10 million views within hours of going live.

The app gives access to personalised wellness plans offering fitness, nutritional and mental wellness advice to meet the individuals’ needs and goals with a videocall feature, which gives access to health and wellness experts and the option to join an online community to support and motivate. Challenges and awards, articles and recipes are also part of the mix.

Those who signed up before the launch were offered a 50 per cent discount. The app is priced at €4.99 a month and Ronaldo claims the online appointments, online community and one-stop approach sets it apart from similar apps.

A number of celebrities are launching apps to share and monetise the fitness and wellbeing knowledge that informs their own lifestyles. These include Hollywood actor, Chris Hemsworth, with his Centr app which includes a variety of workouts, meal plans, meditations and mindfulness advice and a recently launched Centr equipment line.

Legendary body-buildier, Arnold Schwarzenegger, is using his immense profile to build an online fitness community called Arnold’s Pump Club, which includes a daily motivational email providing workout tips and lifestyle advice and the option to subscribe to The Pump app, which delivers workout programmes, motivational tips, a personalised habit tracker and a positive online community.

Triathlete Olympians, Alistair and Jonny Brownlee joined forces with Challenge Family to offer a virtual coaching platform, delivered via TrainingPeaks last year, featuring more than 350 training programmes, nutritional advice, expert insights from Olympic-level coaches and a supportive online community – more recently they've launched a free artificial intelligence tool calledAsk AI.

World-renowned survivalist, Bear Grylls, worked with Imperial College London, as well as a heavy-hitting team of breathwork and mental health experts, to deliver a mental wellbeing app, Mettle, aimed at specifically at men, which takes some of the perceived fluffiness out of mindfulness.

Well-trusted British celebrities, television presenter, Davina McCall and 90s popstar, Mylene Klass offer female-focussed, online workouts. American actress, Julianne Hough, set up the dance-based Kinrgy, as an online community, which has now been reverse-engineered into a bricks and mortar model, in partnership with Xponential Fitness.

With a growing choice of celebrity apps, the success will likely depend on the size of their fanbases, which bodes well for Ronaldo. With his own signature museum, CR7, Ronaldo is no stranger to self-promotion and is also widely regarded as one of the greatest footballers of all time, having won five Ballon d’Or awards, three UEFA Men’s Player of the Year Awards and four European Golden Shoes – the most by a European player.

Ronaldo began his footballing career with Sporting CP, before signing to Manchester United in 2003; six years later he transferred to Real Madrid for £80 million and a salary of €15 million – the most expensive transfer to date at the time. He has since moved to Al Nassr for a rumoured €220 million. Ronaldo has 627 million followers on Instagram, the most of anyone on the planet.

For the consumer these apps and online workouts provide a rich, and potentially transformational, resource of knowledge. The choice is also potentially overwhelming and could lead to people taking out multiple subscriptions some of which may not be used, with this negatively impacting motivation.

What impact will this growth in celebrity apps have on the fitness industry? Will they be competition for memberships or will they inspire more people to join gyms so they can do the workouts? Will they reach out to the 85 per cent who are not currently members, or do they sell an unattainable dream? We’re interested to know your thoughts: [email protected]

Find out more about Cristiano Ronaldo's business interests in the health and fitness and wellness markets in our profile in HCM magazine – click here for more details.

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