Worldwide survey predicts hottest workouts & fitness trends of 2014


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The American College of Sports Medicine’s "Worldwide Survey of Fitness Trends for 2014" says we'll be seeing some new shifts in the fitness industry next year. While uber popular Zumba got bumped completely off the top 20 list from No. 12 last year, high-intensity interval training blasted its way to No. 1.

The survey — completed by 3,815 health and fitness professionals worldwide — shows that despite the warnings of many survey respondents about the potential dangers of HIIT, clients like it for its short time. (You can bust out an intense workout in 30 minutes or less). CrossFit — a high-intensity workout — is the likely reason for this sudden burst of popularity.

“High-intensity interval training made its first appearance on this list this year. Its appearance in the top spot on the list reflects how this form of exercise has taken the fitness community by storm in recent months,” said Walter Thompson, the lead author of the survey, in a release.

Another newcomer to the top 20 list for 2014, at No. 18, is sports-specific training — tailored workouts aimed at improving athletic performance. Designed especially for young athletes, this custom approach to fitness has been on the list in the past (No. 8 in 2010; No. 16 in 2011; No. 17 in 2012) but disappeared from the top 20 list in 2013.

Body-weight training debuted on the list in 2013 at No. 3; for 2014, it bumps down a notch to No. 2. Since it uses little or no equipment, it's a popular and affordable choice — especially under the current economic climate.


Top 20 worldwide fitness trends for 2014

1. High-intensity interval training*
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

* Indicates a top 20 position new for 2014

See the whole "Worldwide Survey of Fitness Trends for 2014" survey statistics here.