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A bike that uses your sweat to charge your iPhone

Element Hotels Pedal-Powered iPhone Charging bikes
One of Element’s Pedal-Powered Charging Stations (AKA eco-fitness bike).

Ever wonder why the engineers of fitness equipment can’t channel your awesome spin bike RPMs or treadmill sprints into electricity for the studio air-conditioning or the lights? Well, they’re still working on that.

But at the LEED-certified Element Hotels (there are currently ten, including one in Times Square), the gyms now have stationary bikes that use your inner batteries (AKA sweat and cardio) to power the short-lived ones in your communication devices.

During a workout of about 15 minutes at one of the Pedal-Powered Charging Stations, you should be able to totally fortify a fading tablet or power up a flat-lining smart phone. That’s different than bikes and treadmills that use extra electricity to power them up when you plug them in.

Right now the Life Fitness bikes are the only piece of equipment with the capability. But the concept holds potential commercially—and personally: Now you can be the one to keep the beat going during your workout, instead of the other way around. —Melisse Gelula

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