The last few years, it’s all been about high-intensity interval training (HIIT workouts). But is that still the case for 2018. While it is, there are new fitness trends happening. If this is your year to focus on your health and improve your strength and heart health, then you’ll want to pay attention to these seven trends.
It’s worth pointing out that there’s no real “right way” to workout. If you’re doing it safely, any workout is going to be good for you. Of course, some are slightly better than others, but just moving more is something your doctor wants you to do. Getting over 30 minutes a day is going to help improve your overall health.
But you don’t want your workouts to become stale. That’s why in 2018 you’ll want to look at some of the latest fitness trends. You’ll want to find something different, even if you only do a new trend once a week to shake things up a little. Here are the seven freshest trends to try out in 2018.
Take Up a Group Training Program
More people are looking for support with like minded people. When you train in a group, you are more likely to put extra effort in. You don’t want people looking at you and thinking you’re slacking. We don’t want to be the only person taking a break or to be at the back of the group.
To make the most of a group training program, you’ll need to get rid of the thoughts of your school PE sessions. This isn’t about forcing yourself to do something you hate. You get to choose the type of workout you join in with.
There are various ways you can do a group fitness session. Some people will join a group fitness class or will join an outdoor bootcamp session. Either way, you have the moral support.
But this is nothing new, is it? Well, surprisingly these types of training weren’t that popular before the end of last year. While they were around, people preferred to stay away from the group sessions. There were worries of body image or what others thought; those fears of the school PE sessions reared their ugly heads. But now there’s more of a focus on the support and the benefits of trying something new in a group.
More local places are putting on their training sessions. There are yoga sessions, HIIT classes, and dance aerobics available. The classes are fun to do and open your social circle. You can also find it easier to stick to a training schedule, knowing that your new friends will question where you are in the next session.
Focus on Body-weight and Strength Training Exercises
Going for a run is something many people think of when it comes to fitness. This really isn’t that surprising, since there has been a huge push on doing more cardio over the years. Towards the end of 2017, the focus turned on the strength workouts. More research was released to show that muscle building and toning was better for the body overall.
This doesn’t mean you should only do strength training, but it’s the focus right now. There are still some benefits of cardio workouts, but bodyweight and strength training are the fitness trend for 2018.
Bodyweight exercises will continually get harder. There’s no need for any exercise equipment, as you’re using your own muscle and weight to build your muscle strength. Even as you lose weight and tone up, you’ll gain muscles. Even if your weight decreases, you’re still likely to lift and do more than you would with dumbbells and machines.
Bodyweight training utilizes the likes of push ups, sit ups, squats, planks, and more. They can be extremely challenging, and you’ll certainly feel the workout the next day.
You can also add a little extra to your workouts. Instead of boosting the reps, you can add some resistance bands, dumbbells, and kettlebells. These elements enhancing your workout as you get better; as you want to tone or build muscle more.
Even if you don’t want to build muscle, strength and muscle training is good to help fight age-related problems. You keep your bones and muscles healthy, as well as your heart. You can also improve the strength of the tendons and ligaments, reducing the risk of injury.
Focus on the legs for this fitness trend to be the most successful. The legs have the biggest muscles and by strengthening them, you will improve the tone and strength of every other muscle in the body.
Do Your Workouts in Your Home
While group exercises are one trend, home workouts are another. These have become even more popular with the thanks to bodyweight training becoming more of a trend. You don’t need specialist equipment. A mat and possibly a few weights are more than enough.
There is a range of benefits to doing at-home workouts. When you work out in the house, you don’t have the thoughts of others watching you. There’s no need to feel self-conscious when you do exercises and activities. You also have more control over the type of exercise you do. If you prefer the simpler bodyweight exercises, you don’t have someone pushing you to increase the weights or add more repetitions than you feel you can do.
Home workouts were once popular because of exercise DVDs. However, the trend dropped away, as more people got out and exercised. Now there’s a new generation looking for home workouts. There’s the ability to stream workouts from live activity classes to do in your own home. You can still be part of a group without the issue of getting out of the house. It’s also possible to watch training videos online through your TV, so you upgrade your workouts.
Then there’s the fact that fitness machines have become cheaper and more affordable. You can get workout benches, treadmills and more to go your workout from your own garage. It’s easier to set up a room just for your needs, so you can give yourself a boost on a morning to fit in with the hectic lifestyle.
Opting for Hot Workouts and Cold Recovery
Hot yoga, heated fitness studios and running on the beach in the summer are all becoming popular. There’s the thought that a heated fitness studio helps to reduce stress and pain during the workout. There’s certainly the benefit of the muscles being warmed before you start the workout.
The latest trend is to do workouts in the heat. The most popular is hot yoga since there is less movement compared to other workouts. You should do the fitness sessions with an instructor, as the heat can be too much and there’s a danger of dehydration.
However, it’s not all about the in-workout temperature. There’s a trend to hike the temperatures up or drop them considerably for the recovery period. More people are turning to cryotherapy to improve their recovery period. Yes, this means cold showers, ice baths and more. Studies have shown that the blood vessels constrict and there’s not as much inflammation after the workout, helping to reduce pain and swelling after the workout. The muscles improve quickly, so you can get back into exercising sooner.
Heated recovery sessions have also been noted as beneficial. More people are turning to the sauna for their recovery period. They can open the pores to help release more sweat, getting out more toxins. The muscles relax better, helping to ease cramps and pain. This can also be good for reducing pain due to certain medical conditions.
So far, research is minimal but positive. Either one of these trends will be worth considering for your post-workout recovery.
Being More Mindful of Your Exercise
You may have heard more people doing yoga daily. People are turning to the more mindful exercises because they want to gain more than just a fitter body. After all, exercise is touted as a major benefit for boosting the mental health and preventing depression and anxiety.
Yoga is certainly becoming more of a trend in 2018. More classes are available in the different types, with instructors that want to help improve both your physical and mental health rather than just go through the same basic routines each week. There’s more of a focus on clearing the sinuses and the emotions. More yoga instructors want to help improve your mental clarity and improve your energy levels, rather than just improve flexibility and strength.
But that’s not all! Now many exercise DVDs and classes involve a mindful element. They tend to add five minutes of meditation into their classes. This can be at the start or at the end to help you gain more mental benefits out of the workout. The aim is to help become more connected with yourself.
Researchers have found that people are struggling to feel disconnected from their work and their duties. They have five minutes to focus on just themselves and fitness experts want that to be useful. Meditation is one of the best options, but not everyone knows where to start. A fitness instructor can help to guide through the process.
Adding More Boxing and Martial Arts to the Workout
About a decade ago, kickboxing started to become a thing. The trend quickly disappeared, as the dance workouts became the thing to do. This is changing for 2018. More fitness studios are offering boxing sessions. Whether it’s kickboxing, more professional boxing or even martial arts workouts, there is something to suit all needs.
Boxing and martial arts aren’t just for improving the fitness levels. They can help to boost the ability to defend yourself. You have the tools in case you’re attacked. Self-defense classes can also be popular for gaining practical skills while improving the fitness, although not as good for the overall fitness as boxing and martial arts.
One of the big reasons boxing becomes a popular option is because of the amount of stress we have in our lives. Work, family, and finances can weigh us down. We spend little time on ourselves and we need to get rid of the adrenaline and other negative hormones. While relaxing baths can be good, you don’t always have the time and you don’t get the fitness benefits. Boxing tends to involve forceful punches, working through the whole body and even hitting bags. It’s more effective for getting rid of stress and pent-up anger.
Sports classes like boxing and martial arts help to add some structure to the workout. They help to remove the boring methodology of most fitness classes. You also get the group workout benefit without really thinking about it!
More Focus on the Recovery
As trend four touched on, recovery is part of the process to improve fitness. You need to look after your muscles and help them strengthen in between the workouts. The last few years have focused so much on the higher intensity workouts that the recovery period has been forgotten about. More people are injuring themselves because they’ve not thought about the help the muscles need to recover.
Current trends look at the way the muscles need the recovery. There’s a focus on slowing down in between the workout sessions; more intelligent programming that remembers the rest periods are essential.
One of the best parts of this trend is the focus on sleep! There’s more encouragement on getting 6-8 hours sleep on a night. This is when your immune system works effectively and when your muscles get a chance to relax and rebuilt. There’s also a focus on stretching and active rest, as well as taking real breaks from exercise.
It’s Time to Follow the New Trends
You can still go out for a run if you want. There’s nothing wrong with taking up swimming sessions or adding HIIT classes to your week, but you also want to look at the other fabulous fitness trends for 2018. There is more focus on improving your overall health. Fitness isn’t just to get stronger muscles and boost the heart health. It’s about focusing on your mental health and reducing the stress levels.
More importantly, the focus for the year is on recovery. This is the second half of the equation when it comes to exercising. You can’t just take a quick drink of water between circuits. It’s time to stretch more, try out cold and hot treatments and get more rest in between your sessions.
Try out the seven fresh trends. You’ll find something that suits your needs and improves your overall fitness and health.