I believe that one of our roles as trainers is to stay current with all of the latest fitness research and trends. However, it can be tough trying to choose which trends will have staying power. New trends are constantly emerging, which is great because it gives trainers a chance to engage with our clients in a new way. Through our expertise, we can determine the right trends to help our clients safely and successfully reach their goals. Below are three fitness trends that I feel will be sticking around for a while…
Wearable Fitness Trackers
In this day and age, technology is at the forefront of most industries and fitness is no exception. In just a few short years, wearable fitness tracking devices (such as Fitbit, Garmin, Jawbone, etc.) have surged in popularity and for good reason. They are accessible and fun to use, easy to wear (the most popular styles being wristbands, watches or clip-on), plus they give you give real-time statistics to help keep track of otherwise hard-to-measure health data on a daily basis such as heart rate, steps taken, flights of stairs climbed, total distance covered, sleep, and more.
Some trainers will use this data during their client’s session, such as incorporating the heart rate into the workouts. Brands are getting more fashionable each year, with many colors, sizes and styles now offered. As technology improves, you can bet this category will continue to grow.
These devices aren’t just popular with individuals but also with companies. Depending on where your client works, they may have opportunities to participate in employee wellness programs, such as a company fitness challenge, that incorporates wearable devices. In other words, people are no longer simply monitoring fitness during the hour or so spent at the gym… but throughout their entire day.
Specialized Group Fitness
Group exercise has really taken off lately. This category in and of itself could be broken down into multiple fitness trends based on all of the variety but I decided to lump it all together. Today’s group fitness is not the typical aerobics/step class of the past. Now there is a niche for everyone based on fitness preference and multiple variations even within that preference, whether is it focused on high-intensity, low-intensity, fusion-style classes, virtual training, mindfulness, etc. Specialized classes for boxing, martial arts, indoor cycling, yoga, HIIT, dance, TRX, Barre, and small group training are just a handful of the variety offered.
Granted, there are so many programs out there that some of them could end up becoming a flash-in-the-pan fad; however, group fitness as a trend is here to stay. Classes are desirable because they incorporate a sense of comradery, variety, accountability, and fun.
One of the bigger trends I’ve noticed, at least where I train, is more of a concerted effort to appropriately and effectively warm-up the body, versus the “jump on a treadmill for 5 minutes before jumping right into the workout”. Foam rolling, dynamic warm-ups and targeted activation drills are important components of a program that have been used by trainers for years. However, they have also become more prominent in workouts for those who do not work with a trainer. In my facility, we offer complimentary workshops to help educate members on topics like this, which could be one reason it is catching on. Another reason could be attributed to easier online access to video tutorials, strength and conditioning websites, and other resources that help expose people to more advanced knowledge they might otherwise not know about if working out on their own.
Although it’s not our job as trainers to be a fitness trend expert, we should at least be familiar with what is out there. At the very least, trends that you feel strongly about incorporating can be a unique way to complement current client programming. In addition, they offer an opportunity to specialize, giving you a chance to separate yourself from other trainers (and make more money!).
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She has a B.S. in Business Administration from Framingham State University and a M.S. in Physical Education/ Strength & Conditioning from Bridgewater State University. She is certified through the National Strength and Conditioning Association as a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist and with USA Weightlifting as a Sports Performance Coach.
Moe lives in Boston where she keeps busy crossing things off her fitness bucket list.
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