We may have been invited to “Netflix and chill” before, but how many of us have been asked to “Neflix and workout”? If finding time to watch your favourite films while fitting in your daily dose of exercise is a struggle that you’ve been facing, then perhaps a new invention called Cycflix may be just what you need!
Ingeniously created by Ronan Byrne, a student at the Dublin Institute of Technology, Cycflix is a stationary bike that will stream Netflix only when you exercise by pedalling. It also takes into account the speed at which you’re pedalling, as a warning sign will pop-up on the screen to inform you that you’re pedalling too slowly and that Netflix will pause its streaming until you pick up your pace.
According to Byrne’s instructions page, this invention “uses a stationary exercise bike connected to an Arduino Nano to control the streaming of Netflix on a PC… The main gist of the project (is that), at the click of a button and some user input, Firefox will open and play Netflix and monitor your speed for the workout routine you designed. If you are going below the speed for too long, Netflix will be paused until you get back up to speed." Netflix can also be replaced with other streaming services, though this will require some minor changes to the Cycflix system.
While Cycflix may sound like the Netflix-meets-spin-class invention that you’ve been waiting for, it’s currently only a prototype and setting it up on your own may be quite a hassle, especially if you’re not a technology aficionado. Replicating Byrne’s project is going to require lots of physics and math skills, like coding and connecting a circuit with resistors and wires, that you probably weren’t taught in school, unless you’ve taken advanced courses.
Though it may be disappointing to hear that Cycflix is not available in the market just yet, I must say that it’s rather comforting to know that there are young people in this world who are putting their skills to good use to create projects that they feel will benefit others. It may be a while before a larger tech corporation picks up on this project, but in the meantime, there’s always your good old iPhone and the nearby gym!