By HYLETE Content Team

Every year seems to bring about an entirely new set of trends in the fitness industry, and it can be difficult to keep up with them! We'll break down this year's top trends and explain why they're becoming so popular.

Top Fitness Trends of 2019

According to a survey by The American College of Sports Medicine, the most popular fitness trends of 2019 are as follows:

  1. Wearables. Wearable fitness technology takes the spot as top trend this year. These are gadgets such as smart watches or other sensor-based items that track your heart rate, burned calories, number of steps taken, sleep patterns and more. Studies as to the efficacy of these devices are mixed but encouraging overall. For example, a study from 2016 concluded that participants with chronic medical conditions who used wearable fitness technology, saw reduced LDL cholesterol, increased activity levels, and weight loss. While the jury is still out on the technology's overall effectiveness, there's no argument about whether or not it's popular. The market for smart wearables is estimated to rise to $27 billion by 2022.
  2. Group training. The next hottest fitness trend is training as a group of people. This could be anything from an aerobics class to the HYLETE Daily Circuit, as long as you're training with others. Group training is great because the participant feels part of a team. This inherent peer pressure plays a role to keep them from skipping workouts. Science agrees there are benefits. Researchers found that group exercise reduced stress by 26% and improved quality of life in comparison to those who worked out alone.
  3. High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). This form of training has athletes running or cycling, swimming, etc. at 90%+ effort for short bursts of time. This is then followed by longer periods of rest. HIIT sessions typically are shorter in duration to traditional cardiovascular training routines, so there's a built-in benefit. A scientific study from 2017 concludes HIIT "...causes improvements in muscular performance parameters and allows athletes to enhance their athletic performance in a competition…." A different study found that HIIT increased the VO2 max, the amount of oxygen able to be used by your red blood cells, to higher levels than those who practiced endurance training. But while HIIT takes less time and offers real results, it is also more intense than traditional endurance training. This kind of intensity is not for everyone and can even lead to injuries for the sedentary, so consult your physician before you start wind sprinting.
  4. Fitness programs for the elderly. Here's a trend we should all get behind. As we age, our bone density decreases and muscles atrophy. Sedentary older adults are at increased risk for falls, increased heart rate, high blood pressure and other health issues. It's been shown that those who exercise can reduce their chances of falling by 21%. Furthermore, cardiovascular health is dramatically improved for those who exercise. A recent study found that the hearts of 75-year old individuals who regularly exercised had the performance of much younger people. So, the elderly can add years to their lives, and improve the quality of those years through consistent training (six straight months is necessary to gain these benefits).
  5. Bodyweight training. Rounding out the list of trends for this year is bodyweight training. This is an exercise philosophy that uses body weight instead of weights for resistance training. Examples of this range from pushup and pull-up routines, to plyometrics and Pilates. Often shunned by weightlifters, this way of training actually does provide great results. A 2018 study showed that bodyweight training stacks up well to combined training, routines that incorporate aerobic and resistance training, for body composition and physical performance. This proves that you can have a tangible effect on your overall fitness without having to go to the gym five days a week. Go ahead and do that power yoga in your bedroom; it's helping!

That wraps up the top five fitness trends of 2019. Remember, what's trending this year may be out of vogue next year, and the important conclusion is that just being active is most important thing. Whether you're into endurance running or HIIT, weight training or bodyweight exercise, what matters is pushing yourself and staying fit.