Fitness is in. Every day, more and more people commit to their health by joining a gym, counting their steps, trying yoga or by taking the stairs instead of the elevator. Eventually, we all find our favorite ways to move, often falling into one fitness trend or another.
What makes a fitness activity “trendy”? Every year ACSM’s (American College of Sports Medicine) Health & Fitness Journal ® surveys professionals in commercial, corporate, clinical and community health fitness industries to create a list. At the end of 2016, 1,801 professionals chose from 42 possible trends for the upcoming year.
You might be surprised to learn that some of your favorite “trendy” fitness activities like Zumba®, indoor cycling, Pilates, boot camp, and running clubs didn’t make it on the list of top trends. Instead, the top 8 fitness trend predictions for 2017 were:
- Wearable technology
- Body weight training
- High-intensity interval training (HIIT)
- Educated, certified fitness professionals
- Strength training
- Group training
- Exercise is Medicine®
If you’re an 8fit member, you’re ahead of the curve – six of the trends listed are available through the app. 8fit’s high-intensity interval training workouts are created by educated, certified fitness professionals. Each workout involves a mix of body weight and strength training exercises. To complement the intense workouts in the app, 8fit members have the opportunity to cool down and stretch with yoga videos. And, if you have an Apple Watch, you’re able to access 8fit’s content through wearable tech, too.
2018 fitness trends
The top 8 fitness trends in 2018 look similar to 2017’s trends, with high-intensity training moving to the number one spot, bumping wearable technology to number three. Here’s the list of 2018 predictions from ACSM with commentary by one of 8fit’s in-house coaches, Marife Sanvictores:
Schedules have never been busier, so naturally high-intensity interval training continues to gain popularity as a way to get results in minimal time. What’s great about HIIT workouts is the activation of the afterburn effect, also known as EPOC (short for “excess post-exercise oxygen consumption”). With EPOC activated, our bodies continue to burn fat long after the workout is over, which is why you’re able to see major results with workouts that are often less than 20 minutes long. Every 8fit workout falls under the HIIT category, but to minimize the risk of injury, we advise that 8fitters focus on quality form over speed or quantity. Once form is perfected, then it’s time to speed things up!
2. Group training
A term we hear more and more is “accountabilibuddy.” Having a buddy to hold you accountable is a great way guarantee success and commitment. Whether you’re training in a small group with a personal trainer, or exercising in a group fitness class, these scenarios both qualify as “group training.” Exercising in a group setting with varied fitness levels is motivating and encourages consistency. Having someone to sweat with, to empathize with, and to celebrate victories with makes workouts more enjoyable.
3. Wearable technology
Wearable technology was number one on the 2017 list, but seems to be decreasing in popularity (ever so slightly) in 2018. Fitness trackers help monitor your progress and keep record of your activity history. They are a useful tool for counting steps, monitoring heart rate, tracking run pace and motivating movement throughout the day.
4. Body weight training
Using your body weight instead of gym equipment is the most convenient and inexpensive ways to stay fit, and can be just as effective as weighted exercise. In addition to saving you money, body weight training saves time by allowing you to exercise anywhere, anytime. This form of exercise is great for every fitness level because the movements are safe and functional, and easily adaptable to your abilities. In the 8fit app, exercises get harder as you get stronger. For example, you might start by doing push-ups against the wall, then advance to push-ups with hands at table height. As your get stronger, you might move your hands to coffee table height before finally making your way to the ground.
5. Strength training
Muscles are fat-burning machines. After perfecting body weight training, many people move onto weighted exercises. Strength training is used to either gain muscle mass or gain/maintain muscle strength. It is very important to perform each exercise with correct form and full range of motion prior to adding more weight to reduce the risk of injury. Some 8fit HIIT circuits add weighted exercises (using household items like water or wine bottles) as members become stronger.
6. Educated, certified, and experienced fitness professionals
When you type “HIIT workout” or “get stronger arms” into your browser’s search bar, you will see millions of search results. But how can you be sure that exercises are designed by qualified professionals? Working directly with a experienced fitness professional ensures your safety and reduces your risk of injury. These trainers understand human kinetics and can modify exercises according to your personal fitness needs. In order to maintain their certifications, fitness professionals engage in continued education and pass new knowledge onto their clients. 8fit workouts are designed by professionals, but to give you more flexibility to workout at your level, if you feel like an exercise included in your HIIT workout isn’t right for your body and fitness level, you can swap it for another recommended exercise.
Over the past several decades, yoga has evolved to accommodate modern lifestyles and fitness preferences – some yoga studios now even feature hip-hop playlists! Throughout this evolution, the root purpose of yoga has remained the same: uniting body, mind and spirit. Whether you practice power yoga, heated yoga, yin yoga or restorative yoga, your body, mind and spirit will feel the benefits. The 8fit app includes a series of yoga flows that are perfect for a warm up, a cool down or your active rest day.
8. Personal training
For those looking for one-on-one attention, professional personal training is the answer. Trainers create programs for individuals based on their fitness goals. Custom programs and one-on-one attention are very effective, but can also be very expensive. The beauty of 8fit is that the app is designed to provide members with personalized fitness programs based on their goals and needs, without the cost of a personal trainer.
We are excited to see some of these trends take shape in 2018, and hope to see you sweating with 8fit all year long.