Looking Back on 2017 Biggest Fitness Trends
It’s no secret the wellness industry is blowing up. Instagram has become a stage for fitness models and it seems like just about everyone is a fitness influencer/motivator these days. However, that is not the only trend that’s hitting the industry. Recovery techniques like cryotherapy and cupping are all the rage and beer/goat/puppy yoga have gone viral. Yeah, 2017 has sure been a crazy year for fitness. In this article we’ll give you the 411 on this year’s trends.
You may have noticed that almost everyone has an Apple watch. Sure it’s a cool accessory, but are you fully taking advantage of all it has to offer? The 3 Series came out late September, and starts at $329 promising “More metrics. More motivation.” Gone are the days of just counting your steps. Now we can measure a variety of workouts including:
The device will measure how far you go, how high (levels of incline), how much you burn. The new watch has a HIIT category (high-intensity interval training) taking note of the highly popular exercise trend.
This is primarily a recovery technique that’s basically a sophisticated version of an ice bath. Whole body cryotherapy is typically 3 minute skin exposure to -200 to -250 degrees. You may be familiar with Cryotherapy as a form of muscle repair and recovery, but Cryotherapy clinics often boast extensive benefits that lack definitive studies to back them. Scottsdale Cryotherapy has a long list of benefits on their website that include:
-Chronic Headaches and Migraines
-Spinal Syndromes-Mental Disorders
-Blunt Joint Trauma
-Sleep Disorders-Circulatory Disorders
Because this practice is still relatively new, the proven results are limited.
Cupping is an alternative form of medicine that can help with pain, blood flow, relaxation, inflammation and can be used as a deep-tissue massage. The cups are used to create suction and can be made of glass, bamboo, silicone, or earthenware. We may think of cupping as trendy but it’s not a new technology. It’s described in one of the oldest medical textbooks “Ebers Papyrus” which dates back to 1,550 B.C. and has been used in Egyptian, Chinese, and Middle Eastern cultures.
When the greatest swimmer of all time (aka Michael Phelps) adopted cupping it became quite the phenomenon.
Beer Yoga, Dog Yoga, Goat Yoga, etc…
You may have seen these videos floating around Facebook. Personally, goat yoga sounds like a really fun, out of the box workout. Come on, who doesn’t want to bring their dog to a yoga class?! In an article called ‘Puppies, Beer and Sex: The new face of fitness’ by WGSN a trend forecasting service, the author talked about how more and more millennials are choosing to be dog owners and postponing having kids. This has lead to incorporating dogs into working out and staying fit. We’re all for keeping looking after our dog’s health as well as our own! But not quite sure how we feel about mixing alcohol and exercise. But according to the article, WGSN predicts the lines between gyms and bars will blur. Work out classes will become a fun way to meet new people (and possibly drink beer together). And the days of “don’t talk to me I’ve got my headphones in” are on the way out.
Science Based Assessments
Not only are sports-performance facilities like the NY Sports Science Lab thriving among weekend warriors, but the big club chains are getting in on the tech-fueled assessment game for anyone looking for a personalized plan to meet performance or weight-loss goals. Many of the big-name chains—LA Fitness, Life Time Fitness, Equinox—offer techie assessment tests that go well beyond holding onto one of those (pretty inaccurate) body-fat measuring monitors for 30 seconds.
“Assessments are the best way to personalize a member program that is specific and effective, and avoid just doing ‘a’ program,” says Dan Hubley, Senior Program Manager of Metabolic Assessments and Health Technology at Life Time Fitness (yes, it’s that big that they have a guy whose entire job is to do it). “There’s no better way to provide a more perfect plan than to understand an individual’s personal metabolism. Our Active Metabolic Assessment (AMA) determines your specific heart rate zones, how your body burns fats and carbohydrates during exercise, and how you can exercise smarter, not harder.”
Deep Tissue Foam Rolling
Foam rolling, by general definition helps to relieve muscle tension, knots, and healing injuries. It relaxes tight muscles and when used correctly, helps to increase flexibility, decrease pain, and regulate blood flow. They can also be used to activate muscles and warm you up before your workout (although a regular foam roller will suffice for this).
I became an admirer of Amelia Boone after reading the Tim Ferriss book ‘Tools of Titans’ where he features Boone, a 4x world champion obstacle racer and ultrarunner (as well as an attorney for Apple). She recommends “a foam roller that is part monster truck tire.” Here’s the one she uses on Amazon.
In the book, Boone says, “foam rollers have historically done very little for me, but this torture device had an immediate and positive impact on my recovery. (It also helps you sleep if used before bed.)”
As with any fitness regime, it’s important to start slow and work your way up. Tim Ferriss warns, “I tried to copy Amelia and did 20-plus minutes my first session. The next day, I felt like I’d been put in a sleeping bag and swung against a tree for a few hours.”