American College of Sports Medicine Signals the Top 10 Fitness Trends of 2018

Annually, the American College of Sports Medicine conducts a survey among health and fitness professionals throughout the United States to compile a top 10 health and fitness trends list for the forthcoming year. The results for 2018 are as follows:

1. HIIT (high intensity interval training) — this type of training comprises brief intervals of intense activity followed by short recovery periods. Typically, these sessions last for 30 minutes or less.

2. Group training — these are instructor-led group exercise sessions designed to motivate and guide people of varying fitness levels. Examples include spin classes, kickboxing, or TRX.

3. Wearable technology — fitness trackers, smart watches, heart rate monitors, and GPS tracking devices assist individuals in setting and achieving measurable fitness goals while offering feedback and motivation.

4. Body weight training — utilizing minimal equipment, this mode of training includes exercises for strength, balance, and flexibility. Examples of popular bodyweight exercises are push-ups, bodyweight squats, lunges, planks, and pull-ups.

5. Strength training — incorporating resistance to target specific muscles or muscle groups is a fundamental aspect of a comprehensive exercise regimen, recommended for at least two non-consecutive days per week.

6. Educated and experienced fitness professionals — it is essential for consumers to be aware of the credentials held by fitness professionals and the accreditation of the programs they have undergone.

7. Yoga — an ancient form of exercise, yoga utilizes a series of specific bodily postures for fitness and relaxation.

8. Personal training — more individuals are pursuing degrees in kinesiology to become personal trainers, and fitness facilities seek professionals with the appropriate education, training, and credentials.

9. Fitness programs for older adults — tailored fitness programs aimed at keeping older adults active and healthy. These programs focus on maintaining strength, flexibility, and balance to prevent injuries and falls.

10. Functional fitness — a trend that involves strength training to enhance balance and aid daily activities. It simulates common movements that people perform at home, work, or during other activities.

Molly Yatso Butz is the foundation development coordinator for Aurora Health Care in Oshkosh and Green Bay.


It is important to note that each of these fitness trends brings its own unique benefits to the table. For instance, HIIT training is known for its effectiveness in maximizing calorie burn in minimal time, making it an attractive option for those with busy schedules. On the other hand, wearable technology has revolutionized the way people track their progress, offering constant motivation and feedback. Similarly, yoga and group training provide a sense of community and support for individuals, making exercise a more enjoyable and social experience.

Additionally, as we look beyond the top 10 fitness trends, it becomes evident that the industry is continuously evolving, with a growing emphasis on holistic wellness. This includes mental health, nutrition, and overall well-being, suggesting that the way we approach fitness and health is becoming more comprehensive and interconnected.

Furthermore, it is encouraging to witness the focus on fitness programs tailored for older adults, acknowledging the importance of maintaining health and activity levels as individuals age. These programs not only contribute to physical well-being but also foster a sense of community and support, promoting overall quality of life.

Overall, the release of the top 10 fitness trends for 2018 shines a light on the dynamic nature of the health and fitness industry, emphasizing the importance of innovation, inclusivity, and a holistic approach to well-being.

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