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AI and algorithms: How the Freeletics Coach works


At Freeletics, we've always been passionate about pushing the boundaries of fitness technology. Our innovation has often led to interesting user inquiries like "can I talk to the Coach?" It's a common misconception that there’s a real person behind the Coach, which is also a testament to the power of our AI-powered personal training. In fact, those user questions became so frequent that we created a Help Center article explaining that the Coach uses AI to adjust your training plan to you, your progress and your needs, and isn’t a real person. We've essentially passed the Turing test of fitness. And while everyone’s now talking about AI and its various uses, we first released our AI-powered Coach all the way back in 2017.

Why did we choose to use AI for the Freeletics app and how does that make us stand out in the crowded fitness app landscape? The answer lies in our commitment to delivering the world’s best, most personalized and effective fitness experiences. AI is the key to achieving this. It's not just a buzzword for us - it's the driving force behind our mission. Here are the opportunities we saw to improve your experience through AI:

Data-Driven Learning: We’ve collected over 56 million users in the last decade and building this treasure trove of data is the foundation of our AI prowess. Our algorithms continuously learn from this very rich dataset, refining and adapting to provide you with the best fitness plans on the market. What does this mean for you? Better estimations of your abilities right from the start, and even better, more personalized recommendations for exercises, sets and reps from your Coach. Which other personal trainer has the 22,271 years it would take to coach and learn from that many people at this level?

Personalized Recommendations: Your active and passive feedback at the end of each workout session is invaluable. Our algorithms take this feedback seriously, like a gut check to our estimations of your abilities and exercise preferences, while also considering factors like your age, gender, and fitness level. Every recommendation of exercise, reps and sets takes this into account. Yes, every single time. This dynamic adjustment ensures that your Training Journey always aligns perfectly with your evolving needs and keeps pushing you towards your goals.

Clustering for Precision: We never take a one-size-fits-all approach. Initially, the Coach clusters a new user with similar users based on their fitness level and demographics to normalize each recommendation. It also estimates each user’s capabilities, such as rep max, through some initial assessments. After that, the Coach uses their ongoing feedback to increase precision and personalization. This level of precision ensures that you're always challenged, but never overwhelmed. It also means that of our 56 million users, no two ever get the exact same Training Journey.

Human-in-a-Loop AI: Behind every Training Journey is the expertise of our qualified sport scientists. They work hand-in-hand with our AI systems, ensuring that plans are designed with both data-driven insights and human wisdom. It's a perfect blend of technology and expertise for the best results.

Our journey in the world of AI is far from over. We're committed to continuous improvement, refining our algorithms as we’ve done over the years, and listening to user feedback. We know that AI has its limitations and we're dedicated to pushing those boundaries while maintaining the human touch that sets Freeletics apart. The Freeletics Coach you know and love isn’t just a program, it's your digital fitness partner. The partner who walks you through your fitness journey and leverages the best of AI to help you achieve your goals again, and again, and again. 

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