The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) announced Oct. 25 its annual fitness trend forecast. For the first time, exercise professionals say that wearable technology will be the top trend in fitness next year.
The top 10 fitness trends for 2016 are:
1. Wearable Technology. Includes fitness trackers, smart watches, heart rate monitors, and GPS tracking devices.
2. Body Weight Training. Body weight training uses minimal equipment, making it more affordable. Not limited to just push-ups and pull-ups, this trend allows people to get "back to the basics" with fitness.
3. High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). HIIT involves short bursts of activity followed by a short period of rest or recovery. These exercise programs are usually performed in less than 30 minutes.
4. Strength Training. Strength training remains a central emphasis for many health clubs. Incorporating strength training is an essential part of a complete exercise program for all physical activity levels and genders. (The other essential components are aerobic exercise and flexibility.)
5. Educated and Experienced Fitness Professionals. Given the large number of organizations offering health and fitness certifications, it's important that consumers choose professionals certified through programs that are accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA).
6. Personal Training. More and more students are majoring in kinesiology, which indicates that they are preparing themselves for careers in allied health fields such as personal training. Education, training and proper credentialing for personal trainers have become increasingly important to the health and fitness facilities that employ them.
7. Functional Fitness. This is a trend toward using strength training to improve balance and ease of daily living. Functional fitness and special fitness programs for older adults are closely related.
8. Fitness Programs for Older Adults. As the baby boom generation ages into retirement, some of these people have more discretionary money than their younger counterparts. Therefore, many health and fitness professionals are taking the time to create age-appropriate fitness programs to keep older adults healthy and active.
9. Exercise and Weight Loss. In addition to nutrition, exercise is a key component of a proper weight loss program. Health and fitness professionals who provide weight loss programs are increasingly incorporating regular exercise and caloric restriction for better weight control in their clients.
10. Yoga. Based on ancient tradition, yoga utilizes a series of specific bodily postures practiced for health and relaxation. This includes Power Yoga, Yogalates, Bikram, Ashtanga, Vinyasa, Kripalu, Anurara, Kundalini, Sivananda and others.