Foreign sales of strength training equipment maker Exerfly have “exploded” after a “mid-pandemic” international launch and it is not looking back.
The Christchurch-based company made one of its first international sales in August last year to the 2020 World Series Major League Baseball champions the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The company, run by business partners Nick Bolton and Jordan Barron, has also sold to the United States professional basketball team, the Golden State Warriors, to the British Premier League football team Wolverhampton Wanderers. , the Canadian Olympic ski team and the British Paralympic Association, says Barron.
After launching the equipment internationally last year, sales to the United States now account for half of sales, European and UK sales 30%, Asia 10% and 10% to the rest of the world which understands New Zealand, he said.
The company makes a portable Exerfly that comes in a kit form and can be configured in a number of ways and weighs 7.5 kilograms. It starts from NZ $ 3,150. The laptop has a sensor and works over Wi-Fi, Barron said.
He also makes a platform, with a bench press, a foot block, two ropes and a motor.
What gave it an advantage over other flywheel training equipment was the sensor technology that allowed the athlete to remotely connect with the coach and the coach could see what the athlete was doing and where improvements were needed, Barron said.
This is strength training using flywheel technology rather than traditional weight training.
Exerfly says the difference is that the athlete uses the force to speed up a flywheel and then slow down the flywheel for constant resistance during training, constantly stimulating the muscles.
One of the other benefits is the reduction in injuries.
With traditional weights, resistance is felt when a weight is lifted but not when it is lowered, where the athlete misses training in this “eccentric” phase.
From a few sales every few months to starting six years ago, Exerfly now takes multiple orders per month.
“We are experiencing strong growth because we are able to offer an all-in-one training solution, which is very cost effective in a Covid world,” said Barron.
Americans, the early adopters, had adopted the product, he said. The company was constantly discussing the equipment with sports teams in the United States. The portable Exerfly folds up easily and can be used in isolation facilities and hotels when teams are on the move.
Belarusian tennis star Victoria Azarenka recently ordered one.
Most of the overseas sales came from word of mouth.
“We try to help as much as possible with pieces of equipment. I guess for us it’s about building a community and starting a relationship because we know that as soon as someone has one, they tell a lot of people about it. This is how we sell a lot because we have been able to develop very strong relationships and help a lot of people in difficult situations.
The company sold online but not through retailers, so it could also offer the equipment at a lower price.
The equipment was originally a project for Christchurch hurdler Bolton who wanted to design training equipment that would keep him from getting injured.
Barron said that throughout development, the company has sought feedback to improve the equipment.
He had been tested on dozens of athletes including champion boxer Joseph Parker, shot putter Jacko Gill, and top sports teams in the country like the Crusaders, Black Caps, Rowing NZ and Triathlon NZ.
In addition, the company has worked for several years with the New Zealand Olympic team, French decathlon champion Kevin Mayer and with Angus Ross of High Performance Sport New Zealand.
“We wanted to get to a point where we had like a virtually unbreakable product so that when we went to market we wouldn’t have a problem because these are really, really hard pieces of equipment to make,” Barron said. .
“We tested it for five years, and we had some really good products, and we went into the market and it kind of exploded because people wanted an all-in-one training solution.”
Most of the parts were contract manufactured in Christchurch and assembled by Exerfly, including the software, steering wheels and electronics.
“We’re trying to help people with their physical and mental health from an athlete’s perspective and from a household perspective as well,” said Barron.