Vivo Aims to Disrupt Aging
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Vivo Aims to Disrupt Aging

Levitan used his own parents’ aging to delve into sarcopenia and devise ways to fight muscle mass reduction and related health issues.

After 35 years with the Atlanta newspapers, Marcia currently serves as Retail VP for the Buckhead Business Association, where she delivers news and trends (laced with a little gossip).

Vivo’s classes allow families and groups to engage virtually while exercising.
Vivo’s classes allow families and groups to engage virtually while exercising.

Philadelphia native Eric Levitan graduated from Duke University at 20 with a degree in mathematics. In October, he wound up in the Atlanta Business Chronicle for raising $1.1 million in seed money for his online startup, Vivo, which motivates seniors to live healthy lifestyles.

“Unlike other livestream or video classes, Vivo is an online, but live and interactive experience focusing on building strength and function,” he explained. “We are a science-based program with proven outcomes. Our scientists baseline every member’s strength and balance and reassess every two months to measure progress. Small group classes provide social engagement and build community. Being online, we can connect family and friends from all over and create a shared experience.”

Levitan’s science-based curricula are designed to counter aging and declining muscle mass.

Not long ago, Levitan saw a presentation on the four cornerstones of healthy aging — nutrition, exercise, sleep and meditation — which introduced him to “sarcopenia,” the progressive loss of muscle mass that leads to frailty in the elderly. This natural loss, he learned, was responsible for many aging-related issues: falls, type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis, and more. He gleaned that strength training at any age works to rebuild muscle mass and keep these issues at bay. “As my own parents’ quality of life began to decrease as they aged, I poured myself into this research,” he said. “I reconnected with Duke, which connected me with experts in the field, and began to experience firsthand what was possible. It was really profound.”

Looking back, Levitan didn’t know how to utilize his math degree, so he signed on with Andersen Consulting (now Accenture), which provided a foundation for his work ethic and skill with customers. He was a consultant for 10 years, then joined a friend at a software company he had founded. Over the next 13 years, Levitan helped to build that company into a successful business, ultimately selling it to an Israeli software firm. Levitan stayed on for five years, exiting “to start something new and make an impact in the world.”

The majority of Vivo’s members are between 60 and 75, says Levitan, “but we have younger and older members (in the 90s).” The cost is $159/month, or $18 (chai) per class.

The staff of 16 accommodates 120+ members and runs over 50 classes per week.

Eric Levitan graduated from Duke at 20, then launched himself into consulting and entrepreneurship.

Levitan has great ambitions for his company, his daily priorities consisting of “communication, building teams and setting the vision for what Vivo can become.” He says that in five years, the company “will be positively impacting people all over the world — and not just in fitness, but nutrition, sleep, and cognition. Vivo will be the go-to resource for guidance on healthy aging and will change the narrative around what aging looks like.” The company is currently scouting opportunities to partner with senior living facilities, corporate wellness programs, healthcare insurance firms, and doctors and physical therapists.

Levitan lives with his wife and two daughters in the Chastain Park neighborhood. When he’s not envisioning the future of Vivo, he mentors other entrepreneurs at the Atlanta Tech Village and participates in causes benefiting the unhoused. He’s also passionate about music, playing guitar in a band at favorite local spots around town.

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