The non-profit American Council on Exercise (ACE) has announced the top ten fitness trends from 2009, based on its annual survey of personal trainers, group fitness experts, advanced health and fitness specialists and lifestyle and weight management consultants.
The survey revealed that boot camp-style workouts, which were named the most popular workout in 2008, were also the most popular fitness trend in 2009.
The following represents ACE's listing of the top trends for 2009:
1. Boot Camp-Style Workouts: Boot camp workouts remain extremely popular because they provide a total-body workout that's varied, fun and challenging. Up to 600 calories can be burned during a boot camp session, which is obviously going to facilitate weight loss.
2. Budget-Friendly Workouts: With today's economy slow to recover, more people will cut costs to stay in shape. Gym membership continues to decline in 2009, with many people using the resources around them as their gym and equipment.
3. Specialty Classes: While yoga and Pilates will remain strong, dance-based classes were all the rage this year. Zumba, a fitness program inspired by Latin dance, combines South American rhythms with cardiovascular exercise. Bollywood, ballroom, Afro-Cuban and other exotic dance styles grew in popularity thanks to shows such as Dancing with the Stars and So You Think You Can Dance.
4. Getting Back to Basics: Despite the fact that many exercises and equipment are becoming more advanced and trendy, trainers continued to focus on basic movements and techniques with their clients.
5. Circuit Training: Studies have shown that interval training combining strength training and cardiovascular activity at different intensities provides a more time-efficient workout than participating in traditional aerobic and weight training sessions.
6. Kettlebells: The reason for the surge in kettlebell training is that it gets back to basic training that requires functional, whole body fitness.
7. Boomer Fitness: Individuals age 50+ have the means, motivation and desire to enhance their quality of life through physical activity and this group is only going to increase in size in 2010.
8. Technology-Based Fitness: From iPods to Cardio Cinema to exergaming (i.e., Wii Fit, Expresso Bikes) the latest in technology continued to infuse itself in all aspects of fitness.
9. Event or Sport-Specific Exercises: Despite the emergence of new and trendy workouts, sports or recreational activities remained a popular way to stay in shape.
10. Mixing It Up: Traditional programming has changed from what's called linear progression to undulating, as research shows similar if not better results. For example, mixing low-intensity cardio with intervals on different days, and mixing high-volume, low- intensity weight training with low-volume, high-intensity training on alternate days.