Welcome to Virtual Exercise Bikes
We offer Widescreen Scenery DVDs for use while training on stationary exercise bikes. Maine's Mt. Desert Island is the first in a growing series of Virtual Bike Ride DVDs which we offer. Whether you're part of Team in Training or an individual exercising, these Virtual Scenery DVDs will make the time spent on your stationary bike, upright bike, recumbant bike, spinner, instride cycle, mini-cycle, Airdyne, or Endurocycle go by quickly. The Hollywood Hills Bike Ride is another of our next Scenery DVD released - click on our DVD Catalog link for an up-to-date list of all of our Bike Scenery DVDs. We'll continue filming new Virtual Bike Rides in scenic areas of the USA and Europe over the coming months and years so that you can continue to enjoy the time spent exercising!
Our Other Virtual Experience DVDs
Kathi and I established VITA Digital Productions in 2000 with one idea in mind: to produce our own high-quality specialty market European Travel Videos. Our original concept was to film Virtual Walks through some of Europe's most beautiful cities. Using SteadicamTM camera stabilization equipment, we are able to film these virtual walks while actually walking through streets, up steps, around corners, while the camera seems to float. Our Virtual Walk videos and DVDs are designed to be watched by people while exercising on their treadmill, Nordic Track, TreadClimber, Elliptical Trainer, Stepper, Stair Climber, or stationary exercise bike. Our hope was to make the time spent exercising fun and interesting by viewing our Treadmill Virtual Walks while getting a good cardio workout. Kathi and I believed that these Virtual Walk DVDs could motivate people to utilize their exercise equipment more frequently by providing them with interesting video and audio to view while exercising. But you never know if an idea that sounds reasonable to you will actually be accepted by others - you just have to hope it will. With that in mind, Kathi and I proceeded to file the articles of incorporation with our state and we also started investigating what equipment to purchase for our new company.
With my 25 year background in television production and with our newly purchased professional equipment, Kathi and I flew to Venice in April of 2001 for our first shoot. Awake and on the streets by 7 AM most days, we not only shot our virtual walks but we also shot more traditional travel video footage using a tripod. Our plan was to sell this traditional footage in a series of videos which we would call Europe Travel Videos. Both series were to be sold by websites on the Internet. We shot Treadmill Virtual Walks through the crowded streets and alleyways of Venice, and on the nearby islands of Burano, Murano, and Torcello. Kathi and I had chosen Venice to be our first project because of our love of the city and its unique locale - and because I had proposed to Kathi here in 1999. Our second trip to Venice did not disappoint us - it is truly a magic city. Leaving Venice exhausted after 10 days of shooting, we flew home and rested.
A month later we flew to London to shoot for 2 weeks. Kathi had booked a converted carriage house on the outskirts of London for our stay. It was perfect for our needs - a large bedroom with flower bedecked balcony upstairs and a full kitchen downstairs. I had promised Kathi we wouldn't work as hard as we had in Venice. I promised her that any days it rained would be our "rest" days. It didn't rain a single day during the two weeks we were in London! We had the singular opportunity to film the Queen's arrival at Royal Ascot. And since Royal Ascot is noted for ladies wearing outrageous hats, our hosts at the carriage house loaned Kathi a hat suitable for the occasion. And we did film more Virtual Walks in and around London, including delighful walks in Hyde Park, along the waterway known as Little Venice, the New River Walk in Islington, and a walk on the Hampstead Heath.
Leaving London exhausted, we flew directly to Rome and fourteen more days of no rain! But we were in incredible Rome - the eternal city. We quickly discovered that Rome is a very difficult city for a videographer. Crowds and other problems make videography a challenge. Eventually we realized that getting to a poplular tourist site around 7 AM each morning was the best way to work. We were able to shoot virtual walks along the famous Via Veneto, made famous by "La Dolce Vita," another walk through the Campo de Fiori, and still another through the beautiful Pincio Gardens of Rome. Taking a bus to the outskirts of the city one day, we shot a virtual walk on the ancient Via Appia - which was a delight because it looks exactly like you would expect it to look.
Returning home after 4 weeks of filming, we received a call from a film editor friend in L.A. He was editing a movie and needed some night scenes of Rome. Would we sell some of our night footage to his production company? We realized that we had over 80 hours of video which could be sold to production houses as "stock footage." Today, we have sold our European stock footage to all of the major television networks and cable channels in the US, Canada, and Germany and our Treadmill Virtual Walk DVDs have been sold to all 50 states and 6 foreign countries.
September 11, 2001, affected us deeply on many levels. We temporarily suspended international travel - our steadicam equipment, batteries, and other tv equipment were just too unusual for the heightened security which was in place. In addition, we always traveled with our tv equipment in our carry on bags - we couldn't afford for the equipment to be damaged or to be lost. So for a few years, our focus was on other aspects of television production. I was asked to film the "Behind the Scenes" and cast interviews featurettes for two motion pictures shot in our state along with other tv projects.
In October of 2003, Kathi and I returned to the United Kingdom to film more virtual walks and more stock footage. This time we filmed virtual walks in the English Countryside: a walk from Eynsford to the village of Shoreham, following the Darent River in Kent. We also filmed a circular walk from the village of Otford through some beautiful scenery and back to our starting point. Along the way, we met some lovely people and had a nice chat. We traveled to Dover and to Brighton to film stock footage and also to Salisbury to film a virtual walk in the area around the Cathedral. In Salisbury we had the opportunity to see one of the surviving copies of the Magna Carta. We also went to Canterbury Cathedral and attended "Evensong."
Finally, in August of 2004, Kathi and I finally found time to edit our first virtual walk, "A Morning in Venice," and get it on the market. We were amazed at the positive reaction it received. Customers said: "Why hasn't someone thought of this before?" and "It's just like being there!" and "I want more." We were very gratified with the reaction to our initial concept formed back in the summer of 2000. We quickly followed with virtual walks in the English Countryside, Rome, along the Appian Way, London Waterways, and Burano. Since then, we've received hundreds of emails from our Treadmill Virtual Walk customers telling us how much they enjoy exercising on their treadmills and exercise bikes with our Virtual Walk DVDs.
In June of 2005, we returned from three weeks filming more Treadmill Virtual Walks along the beautiful Amalfi Coast, on the isle of Capri, in the ancient city of Pompeii, and in the medieval town of Viterbo, north of Rome, this time shooting in High Definition ( 1080i ) and widescreen. We were delighted to have a second generation join us on this trip. Our youngest daughter, Sarah, served valiantly as our Production Assistant.
In June of 2006, we returned from two weeks filming more Treadmill Virtual Walks and Stock Footage on the Hawaiian Islands of Oahu and Kauai. One of the highlights of this trip was an invitation to a family Luau. While on Oahu, we filmed a virtual walk on the famous Hau'ula Loop Trail (a rise of 700 feet doesn't sound too bad unless you're carrying 30 pounds of camera equipment) and another walk through the beautiful Hoomaluhia Botanical Gardens in Kaneohe. Once again, Sarah accompanied us and was a tremendous help in our filming.
In October of 2006, we returned from three weeks filming in Europe. We filmed Treadmill Walks and Stock Footage for a week in the picturesque Cotswolds in England. The villages we visited included Chipping Campden, Broadway, Stanton, Stanway, Upper Slaughter, Lower Slaughter, Blockley, Lacock, Tetbury, Snowshill, Morton-on-Marsh, Bourton-on-the-Water, Bibury, and the enchanting Castle Combe, used as the "Wall Village" in the new motion picure, "Stardust." Then on to Paris via the Eurostar and the Chunnel where we filmed Stock Footage for another week. We shot extensively in Paris including Stock Footage of the Louvre, Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame Cathedral, and many of the locations mentioned in Dan Brown's bestseller, "The DaVinci Code." We also filmed the first of a new series of DVDs titled, "Scenes of Paris." Leaving Paris, we next traveled to London via Eurostar where we filmed for a third week. We arrived back home exhausted after three weeks of filming.
Around this time customers started asking for faster Virtual Experience DVDs so we began experimenting with Virtual Bike Rides. After much "problem solving" we were ready to film our first Virtual Bike Rides on a trip to Maine. We filmed our first Virtual Bike Ride in Acadia National Park on Maine's Mount Desert Island. One month later, we filmed two more in Los Angeles. We filmed a Virtual Bike Ride though the Hollywood Hills, past celebrities homes and along the twisting streets above Hollywood and the Sunset Strip and another one in Beverly Hills.
And in late December of 2007, Kathi and I embark on our most ambitious shooting trip of all, Egypt and the Nile. We hope to return with Virtual Walks and possibly a Virtual Bike Ride in Cario!