Like clockwork the ACSM published their list of expected fitness trends for the new year. Here is what you can expect to be hot or not in the 2014 world of fitness! Surprises galore!
Faster, Harder, 2014
For six years, the #1 spot in the American College for Sport Medicine’s annual survey went to wanting more “educated, certified and experienced fitness professionals.”
I doubt we have enough now, but it finally dropped to #3 and a newcomer is the top dog: HIIT, “high intensity interval training.” In a world that wants to do more in less time that is probably appropriate.
But HIIT is not for everyone, especially not for beginners. If this gains much momentum, I expect some interesting CPR interventions coming to gyms near you.
Body Weight Training Makes It To #2
On spot #2 we have a more welcome and more positive development. Last year it was strength training hitting this one, and already back then I said I like it that people realize that complete fitness requires training both, endurance and strength.
Now strength training is at #4, but second place goes to last year’s third spot, “body weight training.” That puts a smile on my face, as I have been preaching the worth of training with minimal equipment for years.
Functional Fitness And Yoga
Places 8 and 10 go to functional fitness and yoga.
The first makes me wonder how functional fitness will be defined. Real functional fitness was born in the world of rehabilitation treatment. It mimics movements patients have to do in real life, but can’t due to an injury or illness. Many fitness websites and magazines turn this into something having little in common with the concept and it often ends up in senseless exercises that don’t really help anyone do anything. I expect this is what will be sold under the name.
As for yoga: nothing wrong with doing it if it isn’t the sole activity. It’s swell that yoga helps people improve flexibility, find inner calm and get a better connection to their bodies. But yoga isn’t really fitness. It doesn’t improve your heart health, does next to nothing for weight loss, and the muscular strength you gain from it is very limited. Yoga, I dare say, should only be an addition to regular strength and endurance exercise.
Core Training Meets Zumba?
Last year’s number 9, core training, continues its steady slide downwards and has finally dropped from the top ten. Pretty soon it’ll probably meet Zumba in oblivion and they’ll discuss how unfair the world is to yesteryear’s fitness trends. I’d place a small bet on HIIT starting on the same route already next year.
I hope that at some point people will wisen up and realize that trends are just that, and that the old and more boring fitness principles will always be the most reliable solutions.
Picture courtesy of Garry Knight.