the Tempo movement wants to be your fully connected home gym for less. A more accessible product than Tempo’s 42-inch mirror-style fitness machine, the Move consists of a cabinet the size of an end table, stocked with everything you need to get in shape.

A compact storage solution for 50 pounds of convertible dumbbells and weight plates, this cabinet is also topped with a removable iPhone docking station. And that’s the ingenious part. The $ 395 Tempo Move brings in the hardware, while your iPhone does the heavy lifting (pun intended) for a personalized training experience. And yes, this iPhone must be a compatible model.

One caveat is the monthly subscription of $ 35.95 for Tempo classes, available on the iOS app, and it’s mandatory to use the Move, at least for the first year. We were ready to give it a try, but wondered if it would be worth it to forgo our Peloton membership at $ 12.99 per month and all of our favorite instructors.

We spent some quality time training with the Tempo Move, and here’s what you need to know.

The who, what and how

Who is he talking to : the Tempo movement is for those who live in smaller spaces and are looking to train more seriously at home. The multitude of easy-to-adjust weights live in a sleek cabinet that can easily blend into any decor.

What would you like to know: The Tempo Move costs $ 395 for the cabinet full of smart weights. But you’ll need to invest an additional $ 39.95 per month for real-time guidance that includes weight customization, personal training plans, and personal on-screen feedback on your individual workouts. Oh, and you need an iPhone XS or later to be able to track your movements using 3D Tempo Vision. Android users are left behind on this one.

How it compares: For all those who don’t want to break the bank on the $ 2,405 Tempo Studio home gym or the $ 1,495 Mirror, the Tempo Move is a real bargain. And while you won’t get the touchscreen that came with these more expensive systems, the idea is that your TV will replace this prohibitively expensive technology – using a combination of hardware and AI. We were impressed with how accurate the depth-sensing technology was during practices and how more personal the training was than our On-Demand Peloton classes (although we wouldn’t lie, these were definitely more fun) . Being aware of how much weight to use and having the ability to see our pace and reps in real time was an upgrade from other digital platforms that you can follow on your TV, and we can attest to the difference in l ‘drive by how badly we felt the next day.

Compact and stylish design

Jacob Krol / CNN

One of our favorite parts of the Tempo movement is its thoughtful design. As apartment dwellers during COVID-19, our family of four has already expanded our workspaces to almost any room – from the bedroom to the office to the dining room table. Add to that the Bowflex C6 stationary bike and the few weights we could muster, lifted with the Peloton app and things got cluttered.

So, when we were presented with this fully equipped fitness system in the form of a cabinet that can act as an attractive piece of furniture, we were delighted. The storage unit is available in white or black and looks like an Ikea end table or media console. Open the gray felt flap at the front and you will find the range of weight plates, which range from 1.25 pounds to 5 pounds and can be stacked and clipped onto the 8.5 pound dumbbells, which live at the back of the cabinet. The top is blond wood and this is where you’ll find the dock for the iPhone, which Tempo calls the “Core”. The Move itself then connects to your TV via HDMI and a USB-A jack powers it.

In a nifty design move, you can also remove the Core if you don’t have room for installation near your TV. In fact, we decided to leave the Move gear in our office and bring the Core to the living room where we have more space to practice. And, to make sure there isn’t a gaping hole in the top of the cabinet, the Move comes with a matching blonde wood hoop that we just plugged in.

The first step is to download the Tempo Move app and signing up for the $ 39 per month membership, which can be shared with up to six people. Each member then personalizes their profile based on height, weight, gender, experience level, and fitness goals. On the hardware side, once you’ve figured out where your Move cabinet will live, all you need to do is connect the included HDMI jack to the TV – through the cabinet or on its own – and plug your phone into the Core. Everything else, including AI analysis, happens automatically.

Tobey Grumet / CNN

Once you choose your workout, it will tell you the custom weights you need to follow, and you can build your dumbbells accordingly. This part is easy and the four included clamps clip directly on with a flick of your fingers and prevent the weights from slipping.

The on-demand library is extensive and includes classes in HIIT, strength training, yoga, and cardio. While live classes are available with the more expensive Tempo Studio, the Move does not yet support them, with plans to incorporate them in Q1 2022. Like other fitness services, you can choose your own. course, follow the suggestions pushed to you in the app, or do a bit of both. Once you start training, the Core communicates with your iPhone’s sensors and pushes feedback back to the TV screen in real time. Since it uses the iPhone’s actual depth sensor for tracking, you’ll need an iPhone XS or newer.

We encountered a few speed bumps when connecting our iPhone for the first time, which prevented us from training. But once unplugged, restarted, and recalibrated, we were up and running without a hitch.

Tempo’s personal training philosophy is no joke. Full Disclosure: We haven’t been back to our local YMCA gym since the pandemic started because we hate training with a mask on. So after spending a year sweating with the Peloton coaches, we were surprised at the level of fitness Tempo offered in terms of weight lifting. To be clear: there won’t be any laughs with Cody Rigsby here.

The first thing we noticed when we picked our first class was that unlike Peloton classes which rely heavily on organized playlists, there weren’t any specific pieces of music. When you choose a Tempo class on the app, it gives you the option to choose what kind of music you want to play in the background. We chose Throwback Hip Hop, but other genres include Top Hits, Pop, EDM, Ambient, and Pride, among others. You can also use the slide bar to manage the tunes / trainer ratio when it comes to volume control, although no matter how much we turned it up, it never seemed like the tunes were a serious part of. the class. The fact that music isn’t an integral part of training certainly highlighted the seriousness of Tempo, rather than the more upbeat classes we used to take in the gym or do with Peloton, but it did. always missed. You can also stream music from any app on your phone like Spotify, Apple Music or YouTube Music, then just plug it into the dock after returning to the Tempo app. We tried this with our Spotify account but struggled to control the volume so we could hear the instructor better.

Jacob Krol / CNN

Our first class was a 30-minute upper body build that consisted of three circuits, including a series of push-ups and a bit of a trunk towards the end. What we noticed was how more focused it was compared to Peloton and that we were challenged to try heavier weights than we would on our own, due to the customization of the workout. of the application. The sensors worked exactly as promised, counting our reps and pace as we went, and letting us know when our form wasn’t perfect – such as not raising your arms past our shoulder blades during the side elevation. The result was a more serious, focused workout and a lot more pain the next morning. Did we miss Peloton’s production quality and friendly banter? A little. But it was more like getting a personal trainer and less like joining a group fitness class.

Our next class was Lower Body Build: Squat and Hinge Foundations, and we were especially happy with the trainer’s time talking about form. Using 20-pound dumbbells for cup squats and deadlifts was new, so getting live updates on whether we were performing correctly gave us peace of mind.

Ultimately, the shift from choosing our own weights and jumping to Peloton classes to be guided, prompted and ultimately judged on our form and fitness, makes the Tempo movement well worth the price.

Jacob Krol / CNN

the Tempo movement ticks many boxes for anyone looking to improve their home fitness game. Not only do you get a full set of weights in one attractive storage unit, the on-demand classes are both plentiful and serious enough to help you get back into shape with a more personal workout.

We especially enjoyed the strength training classes, but missed Peloton’s more airy and engaging cardio and core classes. Additionally, the $ 39.95 subscription price is comparable to other premium add-ons from Echelon, Peloton, and SoulCycle, but it’s difficult to stack multiple monthly subscriptions for different types of workouts.

However, if you’re looking for a simple way to integrate a home gym into any room and use personal technology to power a focused, hard-working training program, we think the price is right for the price. Cleverly designed Tempo Move. Just make sure you have an iPhone.