Tuesday, January 14, 2014

And the #1 Fitness Trend for 2014 is…

According to the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Worldwide Survey of Fitness Trends for 2014, the Number 1 fitness trend this year will be high-intensity interval training (HIIT) programs, which typically take fewer than 30 minutes to complete.
This spot was previously held since 2008 by “Educated, certified and experienced fitness professionals.” More than 3,800 fitness professionals completed an American College of Sports Medicine survey to determine the top fitness trends for 2014. The survey results were released in the “Now Trending: Worldwide Survey of Fitness Trends for 2014” article published in the November/December issue of ACSM’s Health & Fitness Journal®.

According to ACSM and NewsMagazineNetwork.com, the top 10 fitness trends predicted for this year are:

#1: High-intensity interval training.  HIIT is an enhanced form of interval training, an exercise strategy alternating periods of short, intense exercise with less-intense recovery periods. These short, intense workouts provide improved athletic capacity and condition, improved metabolism, and improved fat burning.
#2: Body weight training. No gym equipment?  No problem. This includes push-ups, pull-ups, squats and other forms of resistance training.

#3: Educated, certified and experienced fitness professionals. The Number 1 trend for the previous six years involves working with experts who have been certified through programs such as those accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA).
#4: Strength training. Strength training builds muscle strength using resistance exercise with free weights, machines or a person’s own body weight.

#5: Exercise and weight loss.
#6: Personal training. According to the ACSM, health and fitness facilities are placing increasing importance on hiring staff members with the education, training and credentials to serve as personal trainers. The trend is mirrored by the growing number of students who are majoring in kinesiology, the scientific study of body movement and its impact on health, society and quality of life.

#7: Senior fitness.  New emphasis is being placed on the mind/body connection of exercise for the booming Baby Boomer population.  Innovative machines like bioDensity and Power Plate are helping people realize the need for improving bone density and flexibility as one ages.
#8: Functional fitness.  This is a trend toward using strength training to improve balance and ease of daily living such as carrying groceries and walking longer distances. Functional fitness and special fitness programs for older adults are closely related.

#9: Group personal training. Exercise is always more fun with a friend!  Fitness experts attribute the popularity of this trend to challenging economic times. Trainers work with groups of two or more clients, who generally pay less than they would for individual personal training.
#10: Yoga. Who couldn’t use a little more flexibility and relaxation?  Bikram, Ashtanga, Vinyasa, Kripalu, Anurara, Sivananda and various other styles of yoga utilize a series of bodily postures to promote the mind/body connection.

Other fitness trends for 2014 include perennial favorites - treating and preventing the growing childhood obesity epidemic, health promotion at your place of work, adding outdoor activities to your fitness routine, circuit training, wellness coaching, sport-specific training, worker incentive programs and boot camps.
Although, in my opinion, a crucial future fitness trend is missing – using state-of-the-art technology to increase health, wellness and enthusiasm for creating a personalized exercise program.  If you love technology like I love it, you realize that the future of fitness is incorporating health tracking into every facet of your life. 

Check my blog in a few weeks to learn my take on the evolution of fitness technology.
To learn how Fitness for Health can help you accomplish your 2014 fitness goals using ACSM’s fitness trends, visit www.FitnessForHealth.org or call 301-231-7138.

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