Top Fitness Trends for 2020 by Stacy Geant Hughes

Updated: Jan 30

Is getting in shape on your list of New Year’s resolutions? American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) publishes an annual list of fitness trends (defined as behaviors that have staying power),that might entice you to try something others find effective.

Here are a few of the hottest fitness trends for 2020 :

#1 Wearable technology (also #1 in 2019) Estimated to be a $95 billion industry in 2020, these trackers continue to improve in sophistication and accuracy of data. Trackers encourage self monitoring and healthy competition, too! In a recent study at UPenn, participants logged over 100 miles more when they used the competitive feature on their trackers than those who did not use it.

#2. High Intensity Interval Training (aka HIIT - up from #3) refers to repeated bouts of high intensity exercise followed by rest, or low impact movement. I LOVE HIIT training! I once explained to someone at the gym how she could integrate it into her treadmill workouts. I saw her a few months later at our local 10K and she announced HIIT had changed her life…and improved her running significantly! In fact, I have resolved to integrate it into some of my Pilates sessions this year! Warning to clients: be prepared!

#3 Group Training (down from #2 in 2019) Maybe there is truth to the adage, “strength in numbers,” or maybe Ovid was right when he said, “A horse never runs so fast as when he has other horses to catch up and outpace.” Either way, defined by ACSM as 5 or more people exercising together, group training remains in the top 4 trends again this year. One study in the Journal of Sports and Exercise Psychology showed that people who exercised with a more capable partner increased their plank hold by more than 24 seconds.

#4 Training with Free Weights (making its debut this year!): Working with free weights increases strength and helps improve balance and even bone density! And for those of you who have resolved to purge and streamline in 2020, free weights are so portable, they can fit neatly into your closet!

So what are you waiting for? Strap on your sneakers and your Apple Watch, jump right in with a few friends at a high intensity followed by a short rest, grab your hand weights, and get moving!

Stacy Geant Hughes, Owner of Core Value Pilates, LLC, Certified Pilates Instructor, Certified Pink Ribbon Program specializing in post breast cancer surgery

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