Thinking woman looking on question and exclamation above on greyWith the start of each new year, comes an influx of fitness trends that claim to shed pounds and tone you more efficiently than any other exercise trend prior. But is there truth to them? Should you give them a chance, or stick with what you know? Here’s a breakdown of ‘what’s what’ and just what’s here to stay…and what’s likely to go away.

Functional Fitness Programs

It doesn’t matter whether you’re an athlete in your 20’s, or an avid walker in your 50’s—no one is immune to the risk of injury. When you throw out your back, tear your ACL or twist your ankle, let’s face it: your body, confidence and motivation to work out can take a serious nosedive.  Functional fitness, a fairly recent exercise trend, is a strength training program beneficial for those who have recently suffered an injury.

What’s the solution to making day to day activities less painful and easier to handle? Why, that’s easy.  A customized fitness plan allows you to improve your stamina and strength (from mowing the lawn to picking up bags of groceries) and therefore, improve your overall health.

Try This Functional Fitness Exercise (It Works Wonders!)

Do you tend to strain your back when carrying your two year old for a piggy back ride? If so, practice the traditional squat—but with a twist in this functional fitness workout.  While lifting yourself up with a medicine ball in tow and keeping your knees bent, lift the ball over your head to improve your upper body strength. When you do, you’ll see just how easy it is to lug around your toddler!

Cycling in the Pool

If you’re already a ‘regular’ spin class attendee, consider aqua cycling your next great cardio obsession! Aqua cycling offers a similar approach to spin class, but instead of on land, you’re putting ‘the pedal to the medal’ in water. If you’re used to putting your joints through the ringer in fitness boot camps or high intensity strength training sessions, aqua cycling is the perfect cardio workout—without added pressure to your knees. Forget burning calories with extra cardio classes during the week—an aqua class or two (which brings on added resistance compared to the traditional spin class) will get the job done!

Getting ‘Gritty’ With It

Move over Crossfit, because Les Mills popular fitness trend, Grit, is on the rise. Grit is a 30 minute, high intensity strength training program that moves at a fast pace, allows you to burn a higher number of calories, and gives you results in a shorter period of time than the traditional strength training class. Choose from three different programs: Grit Strength, Grit Cardio and Grit Plyo, and stay motivated for thirty minute sessions while pushing your body past all physical limits.

Exercise trends are a great way to change up your workout routine, while also eliminating the risk of boredom. Enjoy moving your body in new, exciting and fun ways so that you can continue to meet all of your fitness and weight loss goals!