TaitGO is an app created to improve the fitness experience at the Tait Mackenzie Fitness Centre through access to information, personalization and gamification.



My team was tasked to create an app specifically for the Tait Mckenzie Fitness Centre at York University. After a design process of research, design, usability testing and iteration, we crafted TaitGO.

TaitGO is an app concept that provides it’s users a personalized experience while providing information specific to the gym.


Katreena Dalisay, Michelle Young
(2 designers)


Illustrator, Adobe XD, Invision, Premiere Pro, After Effects


October – December 2017
(6 weeks)


The Tait Mckenzie Fitness Centre - a spacious, multipurpose sport and recreation facility - is the home of the York University Athletics and Recreation. After conducting research we established the following problems: 


A lack of organization and student awareness of the facility's services and fitness classes.


The inconvenience of having to bring additional items. ie. A bracelet, shoe tag and student ID card.


The low involvement of students in programs less related to physical activity.


The current system is not specific to personal goals.


How can we improve the Tait Mckenzie Fitness Centre experience for users of different goals and backgrounds?


→ An application that includes a tracking and goal-oriented database that illustrates the user’s progress through user inputs and health analytics.

Access to activity schedules and sign ups for activities that can be added to a personal calendar.

Tailored recommendations of activities and challenges to the user’s specific preferences and goals.

Gamification of the experience of working out, achieving goals, and involvement in the fitness community.

Implementation of user requests through testing and feedback.



We conducted a field study to familiarize ourselves with the space, better empathize with our users and to define our problem. We had the clear objective to determine how users interact with the gym and its’ environment using an AEIOU analysis structure.


Understanding the User

To define the target audience, we interviewed members of the York University community. After synthesizing our findings, we developed three main personas of people who would interact with the app.

Our main persona is Newbie Nick. We were able to map his journey and create an app that is inclusive to users of all fitness levels. This is reflected in the features built, language used and overall look and feel.

Market Research

We conducted a benchmark of multiple existing applications that would compete with the app including: yorkulions.ca, York U Lions app, Nike+ app and Fitbit app.

We found a number of issues that would cause the different apps to be less successful within the Tait Mckenzie environment. Some of the issues include:

  • The York U Lions app was unusable and full of errors and dead ends.
    Yorkulions.ca did not easily provide information on upcoming fitness class schedules.
  • Fitbit app is not inclusive to everyone as it requires the purchase of a Fitbit device.
  • Information tracked in the Nike+ app is limited to steps taken.
    Each of the apps do not allow users to track personal goals.
  • While Fitbit and Nike+ are successful in many ways, they are not personalized to the members of the Tait Mckenzie Fitness Centre - a gap in the marketplace.

Defining Initial Requirements

Through analyzing Newbie Nick's journey, we began creating the necessary requirements. To create features, we used our app requirements to generate content that serves a function.

Screen Shot 2019-03-12 at 7.57.36 PM

System Map

system map-01

Look + Feel

system map-02

Use Cases

1. Onboarding

The system needs to allow users to create an account.


2. Customizing Dashboard

The system needs to allow users to tailor their experience based on personal preference.


3. Signing Up for Classes

The system needs to allow users to sign up for classes and activities.


4. Setting Goals

The system needs to allow users to add and view their personal goals.


5. Viewing Fitness Statistics

The system needs to allow users to view their fitness statistics and progress.


6. Challenging a Friend

The system needs to allow users to challenge their friends.


Usability Testing

We prototyped the main features of the app and did usability testings in order to see how real users would interact with the app. This validates our assumptions and helps identify problem areas to improve on for the next iteration. We used a DECIDE framework to ensure clear testing goals.


  1. Pre-interview survey to gather background information
  2. “Think-Aloud” testing method
  3. Post testing rating scale question survey.



  • 6 Participants
  • 1/3 Beginner fitness level
  • 1/3 Adequate fitness level
  • 1/3 Expert fitness level
  • 18-24 years old
  • All YorkU students
  • 50% Male, 50% Female
  • 4/6 Tait Mckenzie members
  • Various majors:
    Design, kinesiology, commerce, nursing, social sciences

Data Visualization

post-test-data_POST-QUEST copy

Areas of Improvement

  • App's flexibility
  • Clarity of the sequence of screens
  • Ease of completing tasks
  • Ease of learning to operate the system

The app is most successful in:

  • Legibility of characters on the screen
  • Simplicity and naturalness of dialogue
  • Consistency of terms throughout the system
  • Friendliness of the app

Final Analysis

We synthesized our data and organized our findings into a chart. We then found solutions to our user's pain points and implemented them for future testings.

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Given a longer timeframe and real back-end development, the future of the TaitGO mobile app can be developed further to solve the more advanced problems that the app faced in testing. Future implementations may include more advanced customization such as colour preferences for the different categories, a version of the app that exists without signing up and the development of secondary functions such as GPS co-ordinates of the location, more in-depth facility information, personal profiles and the pride shop.