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Fitness trends for 2018

Geschreven door Nathan Albers

Geschatte leestijd: 5 minuten

Fitness Trends According to Fitness Professionals

A new year means new trends, and this holds true in the fitness world as well. Every year, we look at the expected trends for the new year as predicted by the Worldwide Survey of Fitness Trends.

Before delving into the top 20, let’s first clarify how this survey came about. The idea is to provide professionals with insight into expected fitness trends so that other professionals can possibly reorient themselves when it comes to new training and service offerings. Fitness professionals worldwide were asked to score various fitness trends. However, the categories in which the trends are classified are not always clear, sometimes overlap, and may undervalue or overvalue certain popular trends.

Aside from the fact that the categories are not chosen very wisely, one may question to what extent the fitness professional can provide an objective answer. After all, they may be inclined to score their own field of expertise highly and rate ‘competing trends’ low. Personally, I would like to see a survey of this nature conducted from the consumer’s perspective. This is, of course, the best time of year to do so. All those people with good intentions probably have an idea of how they want to fulfill them.

Top 20 Trends Among Fitness Professionals

With that background filled in, let’s look at the results:

  1. High-Intensity Interval Training
  2. Group Training
  3. Wearable Technology
  4. Bodyweight Training
  5. Strength Training
  6. Educated, Certified and Experienced Fitness Professionals
  7. Yoga
  8. Personal Training
  9. Fitness Programs for Older Adults
  10. Functional Fitness
  11. Exercise and Weight Loss
  12. Exercise Is Medicine
  13. Group Personal Training
  14. Outdoor Activities
  15. Flexibility and Mobility Rollers
  16. Licensure for Fitness Professionals
  17. Circuit Training
  18. Wellness Coaching
  19. Core Training
  20. Sport-Specific Training

We will delve more extensively into the top ten.

1. HIIT

As is the case every year, I must address a major weakness of the survey when it comes to HIIT, namely the fact that Crossfit is included here. However, not all HIIT is Crossfit, and not all Crossfit is HIIT. Crossfit could have also been placed under ‘strength training,’ ‘bodyweight training,’ and ‘group training’ since it includes aspects from all these categories. However, based on accompanying texts from previous years, we could deduce that Crossfit is placed under HIIT in the survey, although the word Crossfit itself is avoided like the plague every year. Criticism of Crossfit, however, can be found under HIIT, which in my opinion is not fair for HIIT (and probably not fair for Crossfit according to Crossfitters).

HIIT is back in the first place this year, up from a third place in 2017.

2. Group Training

Training in groups has also risen this year from sixth place in 2017. This includes various types of group training such as aerobics, spinning, and various types of fitness dance classes.

It should be noted that yoga and core training are mentioned separately, although these are often also conducted in group settings. The same was true for Zumba, which has now dropped off the list due to decreased popularity. I would like to see the various possible interpretations of a group class consistently scored separately. This gives fitness professionals much more insight. For example, you may now know that you need to offer more group classes in your gym or delve deeper into them as a trainer. Then it’s handy to know if you should consider, for example, spinning or aerobics.

3. Wearable Technology

In the first two years that wearables appeared on the list, 2016 and 2017, they ranked first. However, this year they have dropped two places. This may not be very surprising. The novelty may have worn off, and the direct value of wearables has been questioned in various studies, both in terms of reliability and usefulness. We have also tested various wearables and each time asked the question to what extent they offer (significant) added value. So far, we usually don’t get further than ‘a nice gadget that may increase motivation for people who find it difficult to get moving.’

In the future, it remains to be seen whether wearables will evolve from a fashion statement to useful and reliable diagnostic tools. By that, I mean the right data, for the right person, presented in the right way.

4. Bodyweight Training

Calisthenics has been growing in popularity for several years, although it currently seems to remain a subculture. However, this largely depends on your interpretation of ‘calisthenics’ or ‘bodyweight training.’ After all, this also includes the pushups you might do routinely after waking up. Muscle-ups in Crossfit also fall into this category.

By subculture, I mean the calisthenics specialists who, in terms of experiencing the sport, are more comparable to skaters, free runners, and break dancers. So here too, it would be useful to know in what context ‘bodyweight training’ is seen in the survey.

Bodyweight training has dropped two places compared to last year.

5. Strength Training

Strength training appears to be one of the more stable fitness trends. This may not be very surprising with a track record spanning decades and thousands of gyms worldwide where strength training equipment occupies the majority of the space.

In addition to the popularity of strength training among those seeking a muscular body, the added value of strength training for health is becoming increasingly recognized.

6. Educated, Certified and Experienced Fitness Professionals

And this is where, more than usual, I begin to get annoyed with the survey. I really wouldn’t know what the difference is compared to Personal Training in 8th place.

Perhaps they mention it separately because the certified professional referred to here can also impart their expertise in contexts other than personal training. Such as group training, for example, gym supervision, or even as a Crossfit instructor. That’s why I don’t see why this is listed separately since it says nothing about the direction of sports.

7. Yoga

Now, that’s clear! Then we know what we’re talking about. Yoga has remained a stable trend in recent years. This year, it is one place higher than last year.

8. Personal Training

As developers of an Online Coaching App, we are naturally pleased that personal training has been in the top 10 since the inception of the survey in 2006. Of course, we wondered to what extent the survey developers are even

aware of the development of online coaching.

9. Fitness Programs for Older Adults

Last year, I wrote a lot about the benefits of strength training for the elderly based on recent research. Where strength training in this group was often undervalued, seen as unnecessary, or impractical, it is now clear that sufficient muscle mass at an older age is important for normal function. Due to the increased risk profile in this group, specific programs aimed at seniors are a trend that we welcome.

10. Functional Fitness

There’s a bit of overlap with the previous one because it’s often older adults who become aware of a lack of strength in practice. Functional fitness is training, especially strength training, aimed at having sufficient muscle mass to perform normal daily tasks.

What Does the (Future) Athlete Think?

As mentioned, a more convenient approach seems possible. Asking consumers themselves which branch of fitness they plan to pursue this year. Under recognizable, clear names/categories, of course.

Maybe we should just do that ourselves šŸ™‚

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faq-guy-on-phone

Personal Trainer? Check out the All-in-one training and nutrition software!

Completely new version with everything you need to make your personal training even more personal and automate your business.
Available to everyone from spring 2024, sign up for a special launch discount.

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