Every year, the American College of Sports Medicine surveys fitness professionals for what they think will be the top health and fitness trends for the upcoming year. Thousands of respondents weighed in on possible trends. Based on their results, here is a list of the top 10 predicted health and fitness trends for 2019.
1. Wearable Technology
Wearable technology includes smart watches, fitness trackers, heart monitors, and more. It should be no surprise that this tops the list. Wearable fitness technology continues to become more widespread as the years go by. As it continues to evolve, expect to see newer devices that monitor your fitness activity this year.
2. Group Training
Group training refers to group exercise classes where an instructor leads the group through a designed workout. While the concept is certainly not new, the ways in which people train in groups are evolving. For example, clients can now participate in digital exercise classes. Group exercise classes actually first broke the top 20 in ACSM’s trends in 2017. It also took the #2 spot in the 2018 survey.
3. High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)
High Intensity Interval Training involves short periods of high-intensity exercise followed by a short period of rest, resulting in a more efficient workout. HIIT took the #1 spot in 2014 and 2018 on ACSM’s list. At #3 for 2019, it’s still seen as a popular trend in the fitness industry.
4. Fitness Programs for Older Adults
Staying active as you age is just as important, if not more so, than when you were younger. As people tend to live longer, people stay active for longer. Therefore, the fitness industry is responding with a greater amount of programming for the Baby Boom generation and older.
5. Bodyweight Training
Bodyweight training refers to simply using your own bodyweight through various planes of movement as a means of training. This includes exercises like push-ups, sit-ups, planks, etc. It serves as a simple and inexpensive way to vary your workouts.
6. Employing Certified Fitness Professionals
We’re talking actual certified professionals here, not your average internet “fitness expert.” Certified fitness professionals, like personal trainers, are a great way to take your exercise routine to the next level. They are educated in various areas of fitness by accredited organizations or universities.
Yoga, in its many forms, has been in the top 20 on ACSM’s fitness trends list consistently over the last 10 years. Don’t expect yoga’s popularity to go away anytime soon!
8. Personal Training
ACSM cites personal training as “fitness testing and goal setting with the trainer working one on one with a client to prescribe workouts specific to each client’s individual needs and goals.” In recent years, personal training has become more accessible through health clubs, fitness facilities, and online. Since 2006, personal training has remained a top 10 fitness trend.
9. Functional Fitness Training
Functional fitness training is all about improving coordination, balance, strength, and endurance through strength training and other various movements to improve your ability to carry out daily functions/activities. This type of training is often found in clinical programs or fitness programs catered to older adults.
10. Exercise is Medicine
Exercise is Medicine is a global health initiative started by the American College of Sports Medicine themselves. The focus of EIM is to encourage physicians and health care providers to include physical activity as part of every patient visit, and referring their patients to exercise professionals if need be.
Further Down the List
Without going through every single one of the top 20 fitness trends, we found a few more that were worth noting. At #11, Health/Wellness Coaching, similar to Elite’s HealthyCARE program, utilizes behavior modification and coaching to guide an individual to reach their goals. Coming in at the #13 spot are Mobile Exercise Apps, which are commonly used to track progress or find recommendations for exercises. At #14, Mobility/Myofascial Devices are up one spot from last year. These include things like foam rollers, which are used to massage and relieve muscle tightness. Small Group Training comes in at #19, which refers to a trainer working with a group of 2-5 clients at once as opposed to a one-on-one interaction. This usually results in a discount for each participant.
Red Light Therapy is on the Rise
Another honorable mention we wanted to include that wasn’t related to ASCM’s fitness trends list, but a top beauty trend for 2019, was Red Light Therapy. Identified as a growing trend by Greatist, Red Light Therapy uses red light to relieve joint pain, increase circulation, reduce wrinkles, and treat skin various conditions.