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2014 Fitness Trends Revealed

The 2014 ACSM Worldwide Survey of Fitness Trends is an annual survey, now in its eighth consecutive year and, this year, it generated some very surprising results.

High-Intensity Interval Training took over the no. 1 spot held by Educated, Certified, and Experienced Fitness Professionals, which held that position since 2008 and now appears at no. 3 behind Body Weight Training.

The 2014 ACSM Worldwide Survey of Fitness Trends continues to support some previous trends and also reinforced the deletion of four trends that had appeared to be strong for several years but now have dropped off the list. Zumba, which first appeared in the top 10 (no. 9) in 2012, fell to no. 13 in 2013 and dropped off the list of top 20 this year (no. 28 in 2014). Pilates, Spinning, Stability Ball, and Balance Training again failed to appear on the list of top 20 trends in the health and fitness industry, which supports the theory that these were fads and not trends.

Some of the survey respondents still argue that the persistent sluggish economy has influenced the results of this survey and that focused training programs that require expensive equipment or technical instruction are not supported because of the increased cost. Still others argue that Zumba, Spinning, and Pilates have run their useful course.

The Results

The results of this annual survey may help the health and fitness industry make some very important investment decisions for future growth and development. Important business decisions should be based on emerging trends and not the latest exercise innovation peddled by late-night television infomercials or the hottest celebrity endorsing a product.

The 2014 survey seems to reinforce the findings of previous years, which was expected when tracking trends and not fads.The results were as follows:

  1. High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)
  2. Body weight training
  3. Educated, certified and experienced fitness professionals
  4. Strength training
  5. Exercise and weight loss
  6. Personal training
  7. Fitness programs for older adults
  8. Functional fitness
  9. Group personal training
  10. Yoga
  11. Children and exercise for the treatment/prevention of obesity
  12. Worksite health promotion
  13. Core training
  14. Outdoor activities
  15. Circuit training
  16. Outcome measurements
  17. Wellness coaching
  18. Sport-specific training
  19. Worker incentive programs
  20. Boot camp

To read the full article click here.

Article by Walter R. Thompson, Ph.D., FACSM, is associate dean for Graduate Studies and Research in the College of Education at Georgia State University and a regents’ professor in the Department of Kinesiology and Health and in the Department of Nutrition. He also is the executive director of After-School All-Stars Atlanta. He has served on the ACSM Board of Trustees and was twice elected a member of its Administrative Council.

Click here to view the full article online.


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