Tempo Review: A Smart Home Gym That's Actually Worth it?
True or false: Working out from home can be just as beneficial as working out in the gym?
Pre-Covid, the classic gym-goer would vehemently attest to that statement being false, however, many are changing their minds. In a surprising study published by the NY Post, they found that nearly 7 in 10 Americans now believe that they don’t need a gym membership to maintain their fitness. So much so that over half of those surveyed said that they plan to cancel their gym membership.
I have personally watched several people close to me change their perspective about working out from home vs. the gym, going from insisting that they need access to gym equipment and amenities to realizing that home workouts actually work. So what has helped drive that new mindset? In part, it’s smart home gyms or connected gym equipment that allow people to work out efficiently from home while feeling as though they’re part of a community, another major reason why the gym has always been held in such high regard.
In this article, I’m going to be reviewing the Tempo Studio, a leader in the smart home gym industry. As a former gym-junkie who has been using Tempo for months, I’m going to share with you what it’s like using a smart home studio and whether or not I think it’s worth it.
What’s the Tempo Home Gym (AKA Tempo Studio)?
Tempo is a smart home gym that provides personalized guidance for every workout. Built around resistance-based strength training, this machine has been affectionately referred to as the “Peloton of barbells,” which feels like a very accurate description if you are familiar with cult favorite, Peloton.
Equipped with a full set of Olympic weights, users can choose from hundreds of workouts across a range of modalities. Tempo coaches lead you through every workout via their massive 42” HD touchscreen, giving you a fully immersive experience that’s unparalleled. The experience gives the feeling of being trained by a personal trainer, although you’re standing in your living room - what a concept!
Furthermore, Tempo incorporates industry-leading AI technology into their studio, allowing their coaches to “watch” users workout in real-time, correcting form and mitigating the chance of injury. This same technology that allows for form correction also ensures that you never have to worry about counting your reps or guessing which weights to select, the AI takes care of all that for you so that you can focus on what’s most important: getting results.
Wait...Can Tempo Coaches See Me While I Workout?
Don’t worry, if you’re working out in your living room with an outfit that you wouldn’t be caught dead in outside your home, you can rest assured that Tempo maintains your anonymity. The AI simply picks up your form using pulses of infrared light, displaying a detailed 3D model that captures all the nuances of your form. Pretty cool, right?
What’s It Like Exercising With Tempo’s Smart Home Gym?
Since getting my Tempo a few months ago, every person that has walked into my home has essentially asked me the same question “what’s it like?!” Short of pulling out the weights, firing up the studio, and selecting a class, this is the best way I can explain the experience of using Tempo to them:
Using Tempo is like having a personal trainer who has designed a workout program specifically for you. Whether you’re completely new to lifting weights (this was me a year ago!), or you’ve been swinging around dumbbells and barbells for years, Tempo will make sure you’re working within your abilities, with a clear progression path.
Based on the goals that you set for yourself when setting up your studio, Tempo will provide customized recommendations for classes and programs as well as for where to start with your weights. Speaking of weights, the system comes equipped with a total of 115 lbs of weight, which includes 2 dumbbells, a barbell, and varying size plates that allow for adjustment, customization, and advancement (a key to progressive overload AKA muscle GAINS!).
Once you’ve set up your Tempo account and told the studio a little about who you are and what your goals look like, you’ll be greeted with a full library of on-demand and live workout options. You won’t feel overwhelmed, though, because Tempo organizes everything for you and guides you where to go.
Want to go the a la carte route and choose a workout of the day based on what you’re feeling at that moment? Awesome, you can filter the workout choices by criteria like workout length, muscle group, training style, coach, etc. Alternatively, if you want the done-for-you option, where all the guesswork is taken out of having a well-rounded, comprehensive workout, then you can opt to enroll in one of their many dedicated programs.
I’m Brand New to Strength Training and Feeling Intimidated
I hear this a lot, so know that you’re not alone. In fact, this was me up until about a year ago. I avoided the weight section of the gym like the plague. I didn’t know what I was doing and felt far too intimidated to venture over and give it a try.
This is where a smart home workout studio like Tempo can change the game for you. Your Tempo Coach will guide you through the entire workout. From weight selection based on your ability to form cues and guidance for every movement you’ll be performing, you can feel confident in your ability to strength train. Learning the foundations of strength training will help build not only your body but also your mind, taking the intimidation out of it and replacing it with a desire to grow both physically and mentally.
What’s All The Noise About Tempo’s AI Tech and Form Correction?
Before I got my Tempo delivered to my home, I had done a lot of research. However, nothing really prepares you for what to expect until you experience it for yourself. In an attempt to give you a realistic picture of what to expect when working out with Tempo, here are a few things that I find to be noteworthy and helpful in your research:
First, it’s really cool. Technology is an amazing thing when it’s used for good, and cofounder, Moawia Eldeeb, certainly found a way to use AI for good.
Next, it helps make sure that you’re performing the exercises correctly. Even though I am a trained fitness professional and have helped plenty of people get in shape, Tempo still helps me correct my form. No one is perfect! And as soon as you realize that improper form can cause injuries, the sooner you’ll embrace and appreciate the form correction cues given to you by Tempo’s AI. This is so valuable for both beginners and advanced lifters.Lastly, it allows you to just focus on performing every movement with the best form possible. Considering you won’t be distracted with things like rep counting, you get to have more mental energy and clarity to focus on the movement at hand. Studies show that you’re able to get better results from resistance training when you focus on connecting the mind to the muscle being worked. Although this may sound a little woo-woo, it’s scientifically proven, and Tempo allows you to make that connection by taking your mind off of watching the clock or counting your reps.
What to Expect From Tempo’s Coaches
Again, I felt like I had researched all there was about Tempo, but still wasn’t sure what to expect from their coaches and the way the class would go. So here are some thoughts about the workouts and the coaches I’d love to share with you so that you can get a better picture.
There are five main class types: Strength, Cardio, HIIT, Mobility, and Recovery. It appears that all of their coaches teach across each of these modalities, so if you have a coach that you prefer, it’s pretty easy to take their classes and still get the full range of movement styles in.
You also have a couple of options when you’re choosing which workout to do that day, you can either pick and choose from the home screen based on what’s new or trending, you can join a live class session, or you can choose from one of their many curated programs. There’s no right or wrong way to do it, it just depends on what your goals are and how you want to workout.
Regardless of which class you choose and who the coach is that will be leading it, you can always expect that you’ll be walked through the whole process. You won’t be guessing what equipment you’ll need, how much weight to use, or be scrambling to get your mat rolled out and your plates clipped on. Tempo tells you exactly what equipment is needed, provides you with a personalized weight recommendation, and then provides you with ample time to get set up before you begin.
One feature that I absolutely love is that you get to preview the exercises for each class prior to selecting them. For example, let’s say I’m looking to do a lower body workout and I see one that appears to fit the bill. I get to preview what movements are included in the workout and then decide from there if that’s what I want to do that day. Maybe there are a lot of lunges included and I don’t like lunges or I just lunged the other day and am still feeling sore, I may mosey on over to the next choice to find one that better aligns with my needs for that day’s workout.
Once the workout begins, you can expect that the guidance will continue throughout the entire class. From rep counting and timers to form correction cues and previews of the next movement and real-time tracking, you’ll always know what’s happening and what to expect moving forward.
What About The Coaches?
You could have the best class in the world programmed, but if it’s being led by a lukewarm coach, it’ll certainly fall flat and lose its appeal. Luckily, Tempo has amassed a great group of coaches who not only show you how to perform the movements, they are leaders that will motivate you to be the best, strongest version of yourself.
Something that really sticks out to me about the Tempo coaches is the fact that they are real people. I don’t know about you, but I don’t love being instructed by someone who looks as though they were hand-chiseled out of rock by the hands of God himself.
I find the coaches to be very relatable, in-shape, healthy, and a real representation of what a healthy, fit body should look like. Especially for us women, the pressure to look a certain way can be all-consuming and incredibly unrealistic. So major kudos to Tempo for hiring trainers that we can relate to. Also, they all have great personalities, in my opinion, which is the cherry on top.
Who’s the Tempo Fit a good fit for?
The great thing about Tempo is that it’s not made for just one demographic, gender, age, or skill level. The tempo is a versatile piece of equipment that appeals to a wide audience. So while it’s tough to nail down a specific person, we can certainly throw down a few factors that will play a role in your decision as to whether or not Tempo is a good fit for you.
The Tempo Studio is a good fit for you if you:
Are new to resistance training and need to eliminate the guesswork
If you’re new to strength training, you may not even know where to start. If you want to get serious about strengthening your muscles and bones but aren’t sure where to start, Tempo is going to be a godsend for you.
Want to feel like you’re working one-on-one with a personal trainer
Personal training is one of the most effective ways to reach your goals, but what if you can’t make it to the gym or can’t afford the investment? Tempo’s experience closely mimics what you’d get from live, in-person training.
Hate the gym
I get it, the gym is great when it comes to equipment selection, but not so great when it comes to things like intimidation, fear of judgment, sharing equipment, obnoxious gym-goers, and so on.
Are short on space at home
A home gym sounds fantastic to most, but the problem is, we don’t always have the space to dedicate to make it happen. Thankfully, Tempo is compact, sleek, and beautiful to look at. So whether your home gym is your office, living room, or bedroom, you can rest assured that this studio will keep it looking more like your home than a cluttered gym.
Would like to connect with other people in fitness for accountability and goals
Working out from home has traditionally been a lonely venture, however, connected home exercise equipment has changed that. Now, you can workout live with hundreds of other users and connect with them on other platforms and groups, too.
Desire done-for-you programming
Creating your own workout program can be daunting. Even as a fitness professional, I still enjoy following structured programs that were curated by someone other than myself. If you want to be able to “press play” and get to work, you’ll love Tempo’s programming that takes care of everything for you.
The Tempo Studio is NOT a good fit if you:
Don’t want to strength train as the core of your workouts
If lifting weights is unattractive to you or you have an injury or restriction that limits your ability to do so, Tempo is not going to be worth it for you. One of the best features of Tempo and a huge distinguishing factor between them and the competition is the inclusion of real weights. So if you don’t like the idea of weights or resistance training with them, I’d suggest looking to another home fitness studio or app for a better fit.
You’re extremely limited with space
Although Tempo is very compact and includes convenient storage for all the equipment, you still need at least 6-8ft in front of it cleared to be able to place your mat at the appropriate distance and allow the sensors to pick up your motion.
Have a tight budget
The upfront cost under $2,500 is one thing, but the ongoing membership cost of $39 per month can really be a sticking point for individuals and families who are on a budget. That said, Tempo does offer a financing option that can allow those approved to get Tempo for around $69 per month, which can really soften the initial financial blow. Visit their website now to check financing options.
How Much Does the Tempo Studio Cost? NEW Bundle Pricing!
The Tempo has three bundles to choose from, which are outlined below in more detail. The Tempo Starter comes in at $2,495, the Tempo Plus costs $3,245 and the Tempo Pro price is $3,995. When comparing Tempo’s cost to other similar smart gyms on the market, like Tonal which comes in at $2,995 and the Peloton Bike which stickers for $2,045 for the Essential package, the price is very competitive and makes sense for a lot of folks looking to invest in a piece of smart home gym equipment.
I wrote a complete review of the Tempo Bundles, so be sure to check that out to see which bundle is the perfect fit for you!
The Tempo Starter provides all the basics for an at-home workout experience.
or as low as $69/month
The Tempo Plus gives you additional weights and gear for an enhanced strength plus cardio training experience.
or as low as $90/month
The Tempo Pro gives you the full gym experience that includes all weights and accessories.
or as low as $111/month
Naturally, your decision as to whether this price is worth it to you or not will depend heavily on what your specific workout goals are and what type of movement you’d like to perform. If strength training is your focus and you desire an all-in-one system that has everything you need, then Tempo is priced very well.
Of course, you’ll also need to keep in mind that there is a monthly subscription cost that you will need to pay and maintain each month in order to get access to the workouts and the technology that drew you to Tempo in the first place. The money you pay monthly for your membership is money well spent as it allows Tempo to continuously pump out new workouts and exciting updates to their studio, which benefits you the most.
Tempo’s subscription cost is $39 per month, or about $1.30 per day, which doesn’t feel as scary when you look at it that way. Is your health and fitness worth a dollar and some change per day? Tempo’s monthly fee is very standard, falling exactly the same as Peloton’s fee and coming in at $10 less per month than Tonal’s $49 monthly subscription fee. In my opinion, it’s a small price to pay, especially when you compare it to the cost of hiring a personal trainer or paying a gym membership fee.
$2,495 (Starter Bundle), $3,245 (Plus Bundle), $3,995 (Pro Bundle)
Shipping and Installation:
$250 delivery fee covers delivery and handling, as well as white-glove unboxing and Studio placement! They are COVID-19 compliant for peace of mind.
Money Back Guarantee?
30-Day Hassle-Free Trial. If you aren't satisfied, you can return it for a full refund.
Coupon / Promo Code:
$39 per month that gives your household complete access to Tempo's live and on-demand classes both on your studio and on the newly revamped Tempo App. This includes strength training, HIIT, cardio, mobility and recover classes. Tempo does require a 12-month commitment to the membership.
Cabinet - 3 years, Interactive display - 12 months, Heart rate monitor - 12 months, Barbell, clamps and weights - 3 years, Labor and installation - 12 months.
Optional add-ons (depending on the bundle you choose):
25 lb plates , 45 lb plates, Bench, Squat Rack, Heart Rate Monitor, Recovery Roller, Kettlebell System, Heavy Weight Plate Storage, Barbell, Yoga Block, Resistance Bands
As little as $69/mo
Can I Use Tempo Without a Subscription?
No, you cannot use Tempo without a subscription. Without your monthly membership, you won’t have access to the classes, coaches, and technology that I’m assuming drew you to the Tempo in the first place. You can, of course, use the free weights any way you wish, but I wouldn’t recommend just buying Tempo for the weights and not planning to use the subscription. The magic is unlocked when you have access to all the features and inclusions behind the 42” HD touchscreen.
Is the Tempo Worth it?
Tempo is 100% worth it. If you’re looking for an all-inclusive, at-home weight training system that features real weights and personalized guidance and feedback, then you won’t find a better option than Tempo. This connected fitness brand has totally changed the game and has made it easier than ever to strength train from home, something that I am very passionate about.
After using Tempo over the last few months, I have a pretty good idea of the pros and cons that I think will be helpful to you as you navigate narrowing down your buying decision.
Pros of the Tempo
AI Technology for Form Cues and Corrections - I don’t care if you’re a new lifter or you’ve been at it for a while, we all need some level of accountability and coaching to make sure that we're performing movements with proper form to avoid getting injured. For example, thanks to Tempo, I discovered that I was leaning back too far when performing a dumbbell shoulder press. Without that form cue correction, I would have continued to perform that movement with improper form and likely ended up with a strained lower back that could have sidelined me for a while.
Live and On-Demand Class Library - Variety is the spice of life, as they say, and when it comes to fitness, most of us need a good selection of options so that we don’t feel bored and burnt out. Tempo does a phenomenal job of providing ample class options, both in the form of daily live classes and hundreds of on-demand options, including curated programs that are designed to help you reach specific goals.
Stellar Coaches - I have trained with all of the Tempo coaches and can tell you that they are all fantastic. They know their stuff and it shows. If you cringe at the bubbly, rah-rah stuff that you’ll find within other workout apps and platforms, then you’ll love the down-to-earth, no-nonsense approach to training that Tempo’s coaches bring to the table. They are motivating without being over the top.
Sleek, All-Inclusive Design - My Tempo sits smack dab in the middle of my main living space in my home and I love it. It’s a beauty, and like I mentioned, everyone who stops over asks me about it. The studio allows you to blend your home with the gym without feeling like you’re in the gym if that makes sense. I wouldn’t want to leave my dumbbell collection laying around for guests to comment on and my kids to trip over. Tempo, on the other hand, blends in perfectly, and thanks to the included storage, I never feel like my living room looks like a cluttered gym space. Even with the addition of the foldable bench and foldable squat rack, everything is compact, sleek, and designed to fit in your home.
The Programming Works - Whether you want to build muscle, lose fat, or recomp your body, you’ll find what you need inside Tempo’s classes. And you won’t just achieve aesthetic goals, you’ll be able to see and feel the strength you’re gaining. Tempo helps you to progress safely and efficiently so that you can build the strength and endurance you need to live the fit, healthy life you desire.
Cons of the Tempo
Heavy Lifters May Max Out On Weight - If you’re an experienced or advanced lifter, the 115 lbs may not be enough weight. Luckily, Tempo does offer a heavier plate package that you can purchase separately.
Tempo Reviews: Are Those with the Tempo Studio seeing fitness results?
Not only have I done a lot of research into Tempo reviews around the internet, but since I’ve had my own Tempo, I have created several YouTube videos with it and have had many people come leave feedback and reviews of their own. Suffice to say that I have a pretty good feel for how others like their studio. The majority of people agree that it’s awesome and well worth the cost!
You can go on Reddit, Trustpilot, Google, and Tempo’s official site to read some for yourself, but to sum them all up for you, people love the personalized workouts, interactive training, and the strength gains they’re seeing. Now that Tempo has been available for about a year, there’s ample evidence out there that supports its worthiness in the space.
My Final Thoughts: Is Tempo The Real Deal?
Smart home gyms are the future of the connected gym equipment market, there’s no doubt about that. But deciding which one to invest in (and not end up with buyer’s remorse) can feel a little intimidating. When considering Tempo, though, the decision isn’t all that tough based on the overwhelming evidence that shows just how worthy this studio is of your hard-earned money.
From its versatility and design to the inclusion of real weights and dedicated strength training programs, you’ll find that you have all you need and then some to be able to make significant progress on your journey to becoming the best version of yourself. And the best part is that it’s all done from the comfort of your home. No more gym intimidation, lame excuses, and wasted time getting back and forth to the gym. When your gym is in your living room, your workout of the day happens on your schedule and there’s nothing better than that kind of convenience.
To wrap things up, Tempo is worth the investment if you care about your health, fitness, and wellbeing, and you have a desire to break free of the gym and to work out on your own time. Tempo is always adding new classes, programs, and fun extras that keep things fresh and exciting. Plus, I think we can all see the writing on the wall here: the popularity of gyms is waning and being replaced by smart home gyms like Tempo. So if you’re weary of Tempo’s relatively young age, I wouldn’t worry too much. I’d venture to bet that this is a brand that we’ll see much more of in the future.