What’s your favorite fitness trend of 2016? Our 5 favorites

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fitness trend

Have you been a fitness trendsetter this year? Find out below as we look back on our favorite fitness trend of 2016 and a few others that we love almost as much.

We compiled the following list based upon our own observations and research including the worldwide survey published by the American College of Sports Medicine’s Health & Fitness Journal®. For the last ten years the ACSM publication has been the industry standard for studying fitness trends.

Fitness trend #5: Body-weight training

People have been using their own body weight as a form of resistance training for centuries, but it has only been the last three years or so it has been considered a trend. Gyms have been leading the way in pushing this fitness trend because it is an inexpensive and efficient way to exercise and because body-weight fitness classes use minimal equipment. Typical exercises consist of push-ups or pull-ups, but body-weight training can be so much more, and can be quite efficient in burning fat and building lean muscle.

Fitness trend #4: Weight lifting

Weight lifting has increased in popularity among all groups (men, women, young, old, experienced fitness enthusiasts and beginners). Weight lifting, or strength training, has many benefits; it strengthens every day muscles so that every day activities are easier to accomplish. Weight lifting also helps prevent injuries. Many health professionals incorporate strength training to help clients and patients recover from injuries and illness or to help prevent them in the first place. Weight lifting, like exercise in general, can actually be considered medicine to prevent many medical conditions. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention includes strength training as part of the recommended 150 minutes of weekly activity. There are numerous benefits to lifting weights including preserving strength, independence and energy.

Fitness trend #3: Wearable fitness trackers

Smart watches, heart rate monitors, GPS tracking devices: These wearable fitness trackers are everywhere. These trackers were introduced a few years ago but, with advancing technology and declining prices, this trend has really taken off. Wearable technology can help track exercise, total calories burned, distance covered as well as heart rate. The devices create motivation by helping individuals set and aspire to goals. Benchmarks can be recorded and progress can easily be tracked. Wearable fitness trackers also make coordinating challenges with friends easy. Sometimes some healthy competition is the perfect motivation to maintain healthy habits.

Fitness trend #2: High-intensity interval training

Elite athletes have been using high-intensity interval training for many years, but it has hit the mainstream more recently. These workouts are made up of small bouts of high intensity, followed by periods of rest, and usually take 30 minutes or less. Typically considered a full-body workout, HIIT helps boost the aerobic and anaerobic endurance levels. Click here to check out some of the benefits HIIT workouts offer. If you are looking for a challenge, HIIT may be ideal.

Fitness trend #1: Fitness programs for older adults

No surprise that this is our favorite fitness trend of the year. At SilverSneakers we have long recognized that baby boomers are dedicated to fitness. Others in the fitness industry are realizing that this group has an interest in tailor-made exercises, gyms, fitness gear and exercise classes. This generation is no stranger to exercise as the fitness explosion of the 1970s and 80s was championed by boomers. That’s why we have been spreading the good news about older adult fitness for over 20 years and building our program to meet the needs of millions of fitness-minded boomers and beyond. Of course we are happy the trend has entered the mainstream and we will continue making it even more popular in 2017. Are you already using SilverSneakers? Great work. Interested in joining this trend? Click here for a free Ebook “Getting Started with SilverSneakers.”

Many of these trends will likely stick around for 2017 and others will certainly emerge. What do you think will be the top fitness trend of 2017? Share your predictions with us on Facebook.