There are two big trends in physical fitness and weight loss. One is social dieting. The other is incentivized weight loss. One year old app, Dietbet, has used technology to tap into both of these growing trends. Dietbet launched in January of 2013. Since that time, it has helped over 100,000 betters lose over 500,000 lbs.
Getting Started with Dietbet
Potential players download the free dietbet app or log in on the dietbet website. Users can create a game and invite their friends to join them, or join an existing game. Each game has a buy-in amount established, typically anywhere from $10 to $100. Players basically bet that they can lose the weight. Those who do, get to split the pot. There are two types of Dietbets, the traditional and more established 4 week/4% weight loss program, or the newer 6 week/10% weight loss bet.
Once the Dietbet starts, players are prompted to weigh-in. The word of the day is shared, and players must write it on a card and take a photo of the card and the weight shown on the scale. They submit this pic with another full body pic. The team at Dietbet confirms all weigh-in photos and the starting weight is logged. Players weigh-out in the same way at the end of the dietbet.
During the Bet Period
For the duration of the bet, players can log into the app and track their progress with unofficial weigh-ins. There is also an area where users can get daily tips on exercise and fitness.
The biggest part of the program is the support/chat area for those in your group. Progress can be shared, encouraging words left for other players. There’s even some fun, with players being able to award little icon prizes to one another as encouragement and recognition of accomplishments.
Why Does it Work?
The reason that Dietbet works is two-fold. One is the social support that the app offers. The other is the prize money or reward involved.
People are motivated by tangible rewards. While being fit and losing weight should be reward enough, it’s just not. The thought of cashing out at the end is often enough to keep people motivated to continue on. But it’s not just winning the extra money that’s motivating, it’s not losing the money that was initially paid in that helps! Betters do not get their initial bet back if they fail to meet the weight loss goal – that’s the risk of the bet.
The social aspect is an even stronger motivating factor in the success of betters. There is accountability, encouragement and support within the groups. Many groups continue after the bet period is over, and follow each others long term progress. Some gyms have partnered with Dietbet to form small groups within their fitness center so that the members can connect and work together.
Technology has brought a convenience factor to the weight loss market. As with Dietbet, people can get advice, support, and they tools they need to be successful at fitness and weight loss from the comfort of their homes. The weigh-ins are done electronically, the chats and support is all through the app, and even the payout is done electronically through PayPal. It’s just too easy to NOT lose weight using the technology of Dietbet!