Fitness Trends for 2016
This year has seen the high-intensity military-style training lose popularity in favour of wearable/smart technology, bodyweight training and individually. Fitbit (the Charge HR is pictured to the right) was one of the biggest sellers at Rebel Sport last year, and with the launch of Apple watch and other fitness devices it is almost certain that we all have some type of wearable/smart technology tracking our every move. Some advantages include:
Reaching your step goal
Sitting for long periods is bad – we experience a drop in metabolic rate (reduced calorie burn), adopt poor postural habits and are more likely to develop cardiovascular disease. The solution seems to be less sitting and more moving. Wearing a device, even as simple as a pedometer, is a small reminder to encourage us to get up more, take a longer route, use the stairs – and more. While the recommendation is 10,000 steps/day – one size doesn’t fit all. Aim to increase your step count gradually to achieve better health outcomes
Helpful for people new to exercise
Many people are unsure of how much activity to do – generally, adults should be aiming for at least 150 minutes/week moderate intensity activity to achieve health benefits. Using a device helps to make people more fitness-savvy about how to reach those exercise targets and reflect on.
Provides measurable data
Some more advanced functions on devices such as Fitbit or Apple watch allow users to set and monitor weekly exercise goals, track exercise sessions, and even track heart rate. Bodyweight exercises are effective, partly because they involve compound movements—meaning numerous joints and muscles are working in each exercise. These high energy-burning moves bring training back to basics, and involve both a cardio and strength component that keeps the heart pumping while encouraging strength development. Bodyweight training helps us learn how to move our bodies effectively while gaining functional strength.
The past year has seen the rise of ‘fitspo’ (short for fitspiration) – an online platform that promotes toned, lean, fit bodies in stylish workout gear. This can be potentially damaging to body image and self-esteem. What this trend doesn’t consider is that everybody is unique and it’s important to exercise right for you and your uniqueness.
Talking to a qualified trainer or exercise physiologist about your goals, current health status and physical activity level is important to tailor a safe and effective program. Individually tailored exercise can help people recover from injury, prevent or manage chronic disease and increase our overall fitness for improved health and wellbeing.