Coordinating daily life responsibilities along with exercise is difficult. I wanted to find a way to encourage users to work out and understand its significance. Yoga can not only improve physical health but also mental health as well as productivity.
The Down Dog Yoga app has no methods of scheduling, reminding, or simply encouraging the user to practice yoga. With this, users will not be held accountable for their exercise nor will they be encouraged to take that step to start their practice.
Current version of the application allows personalizations of yoga practices including choosing the style, duration, complexity, as well as pace. After the selections are complete, a video with a yoga instructor appears to guide the user.
The "History" tab leads to a calendar that simply counts how many practices have been completed. This feature can be improved to result in a more integrated and interactive exercise experience.
After using the Down Dog Yoga app for 2 weeks, I conducted in-depth virtual interviews about user exercise habits and scheduling as well as reminder implementations into lifestyles.
I focused on understanding what popular platforms are used, how they kept themselves accountable, what encouraged them to exercise, and how it benefitted them.
How do you remind yourself to work out?
What encourages you to work out?
Do you feel a difference in productivity or in your day when you workout versus when you don't work out?
My interviews fell under 3 main categories of users: mindful, athletic, novice. They all reported using virtual platforms and a majority of users reported relying on calendars or planners to keep themselves accountable to their practice.
A platform of personalized scheduling and reminding through notifications would allow users of various preferences to seamlessly implement Down Dog Yoga application into their lifestyles.
the mindful one
the athletic one
the novice one
YouTube, other apps
class times are remembered, wants to implement exercise
doesn't need a reminder, part of her daily routine
calendar/planner, or when she wants a "boost" in energy
"I want to be strong, healthy, have mobility as I get older"
"It makes me feel good and helps with stress and getting rid of excess energy"
"I dance because it helps me release stress and express myself"
"I am so productive when I work out in the morning. I get everything done that day"
"When I don't workout I feel sluggish and lazy..."
"I am usually happier after dance and finish my work quicker"
"I try to meditate twice a day and when I do, I feel GREAT and so clear and levelheaded"
"I meditate/do yoga sometimes.. makes me feel more calm, introspective, and appreciative"
no yoga or meditation
What specific areas can we target to facilitate the implementation of Down Dog Yoga into users' lifestyles?
To account for variability in exercise needs, a personalized scheduling mechanism will be implemented. This change will ensure users use the app consistently, allowing them to block out their Down Dog sessions in their calendar.
To encourage users to practice, notifications will be sent out multiple times during the day. They will either be words of encouragement or reminders for daily practice or upcoming scheduled practice.
Based on research, I identified the user journey and interface opportunities for my redesign of the previous "History" tab to a new "Schedule" tab. I also mocked up flows of notifications and reminders.
I focused on designing the user flow & UX while utilizing Down dog's UI and visual hierarchy.
SCHEDULE + NOTIFICATION
The new "Schedule" tab increases accountability and usage of the app.
I wrote out sample notifications as well as notification flow and journey. I thought the tone of the notifications should be positive, encouraging, and warm.
BUILD + DESIGN
Using my research and ideation results, I wireframed my intended user journey. I kept in mind the simple intention for its use and how it would benefit the users' everyday lifestyle.
From there I made small changes to icon design to be implemented.
I created two types of notifications - reminders (left) & encouragements (right). The current Down Dog app does not contain reminders.
I used encouraging, positive language to make users comfortable and excited to revisit the app. I also implemented messages of health benefits and factoids to provide knowledge of the significance of exercise.
When a user is notified of an upcoming yoga session, I created options for snoozing, canceling, and beginning. This allows the option to make a decision and later reschedule.
I stayed faithful to basic color and design (font, attributes, flow). For example, I used a picture as a background as the app did. I only updated the icons to cleaner and rounded-edged versions.
I created a new icon for the "Schedule" tab to replace the "History" tab icon.
Reminder to Reschedule
The Schedule Tab allows complete personalization for the user's yoga practices. They pick how many days, which days, and free times to practice yoga. They also pick the duration of practice as well as input their preferences into an embedded calendar. Lastly, they choose whether they want to be reminded.
Notifications allow users to choose to accomplish a scheduled or impromptu Yoga practice. As the Down Dog app will save their inputted schedule, it will notify users when they are free if they would like to practice yoga through encouragement.
These additions were shown to encourage users to come back, do yoga, and actually practice on a consistent schedule. Encouragements made users feel like the Down Dog team was on their side and was there to support them in any way they could.
I enjoyed working on a project where I focused on functionality and the impact that this mobile application can have on its users.
In the future, I would love to experiment with a visual redesign of this application. I believe the notifications can also be redesigned to include visuals whether it is emojis, icons, or pictures; this would add another attractive way to bring users back.
Looking back over my project I would’ve implemented more usability testing of my changes to provide feedback and allow me to iterate based on data-driven feedback. Testing the impact of my redesigns will provide metrics of my changes and hopefully show how these designs increase the efficiency and productivity of the application.