Everybody has a favorite exercise, but sometimes a certain workout becomes more popular than ever, sending it to the top of fitness lists when classes and participants increase in numbers.
In addition to knowing what’s going to be hot for the year ahead, it’s nice to know whether your preferred physical activities are still going to be around once you’re hooked. For this reason, it’s important to do research before starting a new workout that might eventually become obsolete.
So how do you know if that cool new fitness trend is here to stay? While there are no guarantees in life, surveys conducted by respected sources (such as The American College of Sports Medicine) can help by creating lists of the most popular workout movements of the upcoming year.
Below are some favorite fitness trends:
1. High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)—
This type of exercise is not for the faint of heart, nor the weak of body. Depending on your level of fitness, you may have to work up to HIIT slowly with other types of less-concentrated strength training to avoid injuries. Some examples of this type of workout would be the increasingly popular CrossFit trend, Focus T25, boot camps and P90X, all of which push participants to their physical limits to achieve fast and impressive results.
Often used for training professional athletes, police, military and martial arts competitors, CrossFit and boot camps focus more on group workouts, while P90X and Focus T25 are more suited to those who prefer home DVD workouts. But all of these versions of HIIT offer a powerful variety of different moves designed to create muscle confusion and build mass fast.
2. Body Weight Training—
This type of exercise is popular because it allows us to use our own body weight for resistance, making it highly affordable, and an especially great workout for those who travel. Stuck in a hotel room? Use the desk chair to work triceps, or build the core with planks.
No dumbbells or machines are needed, as this form of training involves the classic basics of working out, such as push-ups, sit-ups, and pull-ups.
Body weight training can also involve chairs or resistance bands to increase the challenge, if necessary.
3. Utilizing Personal Trainers—
This is a really smart trend because proper form during exercise is one of the best gifts any fitness fan can give their body.
By having a trained fitness professional teach you the correct way to do all exercises and help you come up with a program geared to achieve what you’re hoping for, you can save yourself major time and frustration.
Etiquette tip: If you decide to give this trend a try, be sure to ask the staff of your club for personal trainer recommendations, as many gyms frown upon freelance trainers utilizing the business that owners have worked so hard to establish.
4. Strength Training—
Many former cardio junkies are realizing that their favorite form of exercise is only one side of the fitness coin. Because yes, cardio is great for the heart and burns calories, but building muscle mass raises metabolism, increases bone mineral density and tightens the body up in ways cardio simply can’t.
Strength training generally involves dumbbells, bench presses, weight machines, or any type of repetitive lifting and slow, controlled lowering of weight. This exercise builds muscles by tearing down muscle fibers, and then allowing them to rest, heal and rebuild stronger and bigger than before.
Strength training is especially recommended for athletes, as the increased muscle can protect the body from harm and prevent injury during rough activities.
5. Online Training—
Many fitness personalities already offer online tutorials and videos to teach and guide people through specific workouts, and now many gyms are starting to embrace this trend as well.
Because technology has advanced to the point where streaming exercise routines on computers and televisions is completely user-friendly and convenient, online training is expected to continue growing as a fitness trend that is here to stay.
6. Functional Fitness—
Our culture is becoming more aware that exercise can be one of the most powerful pain and illness preventative measures anyone can take, and we’re finally figuring this out before we reach the point of physical therapy, rather than afterwards.
Exercise physiologists and personal trainers who specialize in helping people with chronic pain and recurring injuries can teach clients corrective exercises to build up weak areas for pain reduction and future injury prevention.
Hiring a personal trainer costs money, but when you consider how much physical therapy costs every time a recurring injury rears its painful head, it can be money well spent.
Yoga, core training, eating healthfully and fitness apps are all still popular trends this year, as well as a growing emphasis on elderly fitness programs and outdoor activities. No matter what type of exercise you prefer, there is something for everyone… so get out there, get moving, and get fit.