1. High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). HIITs have reclaimed the no. 1 spot. It was in the top spot back in 2014. But then in 2015 and 2016 it moved down to the 2nd and 3rd Flying into the top spot for the last 2 years was wearable technology as Fitbits became the UGGs of fitness accessories and everyone got fired up to move more with the help of trackers and apps.
Dr. Thompson said he was surprised HIITs moved back to top spot. “Typically, as a trend starts to fall on the list it continues to fall, like Pilates and Zumba a few years ago, until it no longer trends.”
But HIIT workouts are just so damn good! Every study shows how beneficial they are for everyone from the obese to older adults. Plus, they’re convenient because they can be done in a short amount of time and with little to no equipment. Dr. Thompson says, “our research shows that, with proper precautions like working with a certified personal trainer, HIIT is a safe, effective and fun way to exercise.”
2. Group Training. Whether it’s because sweating is more fun and motivating with friends, or the music and energy gets you pumped, Group Fitness Training has moved back up the list. (it was #6 last year). I know some of you readers love to be the lone wolf. Headphones on, going on a solo run or hopping on a cardio machine with the rest of the world tuned out, is great. I get it and know how it clears the head. But the energy that comes in a group is a very different animal. There’s laughter, camaraderie, sometimes fun competition and fitness goals being accomplished. And, just when you thought there was no other workout that can be done in a group, a new one emerges. Have you seen a SUP Yoga workout in your area yet? “Like Yoga has consistently done over the last decade, group training seems to be re-inventing itself,” according to Dr. Thompson. Plus, every fitness level can be accommodated, meaning no one gets left out.
3. Wearable Technology: including fitness trackers, smart watches, heart rate monitors and GPS tracking devices. Bumped from its #1 spot 2 years in a row, are wearables heading out to pasture? I still haven’t bought my bio-feedback clothing with sensors built into the fibers yet so I think there’s hope for a resurgence or at least for it to stick around the top 10 for a few more years.
4. Body Weight Training. Back to basics is always in style. Push ups, pull ups, planks, Burpees… they’ll never die. Plus, no equipment needed, except maybe the chin up bar.
5. Strength Training. It’s a crucial component for Every Body. I predict this will never leave the top 10. Men, women, older adults, post rehab, post-surgery, people with many chronic diseases, all benefit from building strength. And know this: people with the most muscle mass have been shown to live the longest.
6. Educated and Experienced Fitness Professionals. There are more and more organizations offering health and fitness certifications (it’s a big money making business). So it’s important that to choose professionals certified through programs that are accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA). When you take a class or work with a coach or a trainer, check their credentials and number of years of experience.
7. Yoga. The trend of all trends… for what? 2000 years? Yes, it’s here to stay. Like group training, there’s a method for everybody. Whether you want physical and mental relaxation, or something more intense like Power Yoga or Bikram (Hot) Yoga, your desire can be easily met. Some methods focus on breathing and meditation, others challenge physical stamina and balance, and everything in between. There are many styles to choose from: Ashtanga, Vinyasa, Kripalu, Anurara, Kundalini, Sivananda and plenty of others.
8. Personal Training. Kinesiology is one hot topic at the universities which tells us more and more young people
9. Fitness Programs for Older Adults. If you don’t live under a rock, you’ve heard the fastest growing market is the baby boom generation. As people age into retirement, there are those with extra cash on hand to spend on themselves. By this age, they know that health is the most important asset, so they spend it on improving their fitness. Where there’s a market, there are fitness trainers to fill the need.
10. Functional Fitness. My personal favorite trend these days. I even have a specific certification in Functional Strength Training. The name sounds so blasé, but trust me, a good Functional workout will kick your ass! Literally, my butt looks better after adding a few great functional moves to most of my workouts. It’s all about using strength training to improve balance and ease of daily living… and making you look damn good too!