07 Jul '11, 5pm

World’s greenest gym forces patrons to generate their own electricity

A gym in Portland, Oregon (where else?) claims to produce 36 percent of its electricity from a combination of solar panels and special exercise bicycles that transform patrons’ exertions into electricity. The idea is straightforward: Exercise equipment that provides resistance turns your effort into waste heat, so why not turn it into usable electricity instead? So far, three different companies have applied this technique to stationary bicycles, elliptical trainers, and stair-steppers. The Green Microgym in Portland uses a type of custom-made stationary bicycle to produce power. Other gyms have gotten in on the act, including the New York Sports Club on Eighth Avenue in Manhattan, and, most famously, Hong Kong's California Fitness gym . Unfortunately, yuppies turn out to be a fairly inefficient way to turn quinoa into electricity. The average person, even one in reasonabl...

Full article: http://www.grist.org/list/2011-07-07-worlds-greenest-gym-...

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