The American College of Sports Medicine just published the results of their worldwide survey among 19,000 fitness professionals, who were asked about the coming trends in fitness. The findings? Pilates is going out and more emphasis on strength training is coming in.
Pilates first appeared in the ACSM’s top ten trends list in 2008, making it to rank 7. It held that place in 2009, but now dropped to rank 9, indicating it came, saw and is now on the way into oblivion. Which in my opinion is about time, as it has been clear for years that it promises way more than it can keep and led especially women to believe that they will heighten their flexibility and strength through yogaesque movements, sometimes done with fitness balls or weights that a three-year-old wouldn’t find difficult to lug around.
The claim about increased flexibility might be true, but strength? To increase strength you need to work against adequate resistance. For very unfit people Pilates in the beginning might make a difference here, but in my opinion women are better advised to do true yoga and a dedicated and well-designed strength training program.
Hello, Strength Training!
So, yep and hooray to the increased interest in strength training (bodybuilding, weightlifting etc.), that moved up from rank 6 in 2007 and 4 in 2008 and 2009 to now come in at rank 2.
Thirty years ago the general assumption was that a fit body solely relies on cardiovascular health and people were encouraged to pick up jogging. “Strength training” with weights was seen as a weird pastime that conceited and sweaty men called “bodybuilders” were doing and only in the last decade it has dawned in the fitness community that both, cardiovascular and muscular health, are integral parts of a fit body.
If we now as well see the last of Nordic walking, I might open a metaphorical bottle of champagne.
The complete top ten and explanations of the survey’s results are available as PDF.
Picture courtesy of J. Vílchez.