SACRAMENTO, Calif. (CBS) — One gym is harnessing the power of its members’ workouts to help power their building using innovative green technology.
These gym members aren’t just energizing their bodies, they’re energizing the building.
Workouts here help power everything from equipment to lights to fans.
The system connects specially-designed equipment to the building itself. It starts with machines like a treadmill, which users have to put in motion to turn on.
“So the faster they go, the faster the machine will turn on, and they need to maintain a certain tempo to keep the machine going,” Sacramento EcoFitness owner Jose Avina said.
Inside every piece of equipment is a micro-inverter — similar to what’s used in wind turbines. It harnesses kinetic energy generated during a workout and converts it to A/C power.
“That energy that’s being produced immediately goes straight into our battery,” Avina said.
The energy stored there is redirected to every electrical outlet in the building.
For gym members, racking up watts has become a part of daily workouts.
Monitors show how much they generate and a monthly competition tracks who created the most power.
“It’s more of a challenge to myself,” gym member Matt Landing said. “It’s pushing it how hard you can go, how much energy you can produce.”
Workout power is significantly reducing electric bills with the help of solar panels.
The technology is expected to be rolled out in gyms across the country.