If there was one word to sum up the fitness trends for 2023, it would be: Technology. Over the past couple of years, the shift to virtual training opened many opportunities for anyone to get fit anywhere.
This year, new tech innovations, like virtual reality fitness, make at-home training easier than ever. Even better, you don’t have to be isolated and sacrifice the community aspect of fitness for the convenience of training at home. These new innovations bring your fitness community to you as well in several creative ways.
Check out what we can expect to see more of as we lunge into 2023.
WHY YOU SHOULD CHANGE UP YOUR TRAINING IN 2023
You might be wondering if it’s worth it to give some of these new trends a try when your current routine seems just fine. “Because everyone else is doing it” didn’t cut it as a reasonable explanation for doing something when you were a kid, and that’s probably still the case. However, changing up your workout routine does offer you some long-term benefits.
Changing your workout routine by incorporating some of the newest fitness trends can help you avoid fitness plateaus and add variety to your routine to keep you motivated and working toward your goals. Your body will naturally adapt to the workouts that you do.
Therefore, periodization and the OPT™ Model can be such effective training tools! Even with a great training plan, if you find yourself repeating the same exercises with the same machines or equipment, it may be time for a change up.
Trying something new can add variety to your routine and help you prevent burnout (both physically and mentally). Plus, you’ll never know whether you enjoy something until you try it. You might just discover your new favourite workout!
Fitness trackers come in all shapes and sizes including watches, and even rings. The great thing about wearable technology is that it goes with you wherever you go and tracks your stats along the way. Most fitness trackers monitor calories burned, heart rate, steps, and sleep patterns at a minimum. You can track your daily, weekly, and even monthly stats to help track your progress.
Being able to monitor all these stats is great, if you know what to do with that information. Wearable technology is best utilized when you use it to measure your goals and progress along the way. For example: set a goal to exercise 150 minutes per week and check in with your fitness tracker to see how you’re doing.
Many trackers will even allow you to set goals for things like steps, active time, and even sleep so that you can have some accountability each day and over time. Some will even remind you of your goals and alert you of your current progress so that you can ramp it up as needed. Wearable technology is here to stay, and we expect the capabilities of this type of technology to continue to expand over time.
The pandemic may have forced us to workout at home for a (long) season, but many fitness enthusiasts found it so convenient that they are choosing to continue to train from home in 2023. Some benefits include: no commute, 24/7 access, and a private environment, to name a few.
If you want to work out from home, but you don’t know what to do, there are endless options available for virtual training. You can hire a virtual personal trainer to train you or write workouts for you, attend virtual group fitness classes, or use a fitness app that provides workouts.
All you need is some space and some basic equipment like a mat, bands, and dumbbells, and you’re ready to go! It’s best to start with the basics (when it comes to equipment), and then slowly add new equipment or machines as you figure out what types of workouts you enjoy and what equipment is required to perform those workouts.
VIRTUAL REALITY FITNESS
This might sound like a trend from the Jetsons, but virtual reality (VR) fitness is officially here! In VR workouts, you’re wearing a headset and holding two controllers that can sense your movement. When you jump, your virtual character jumps. When you punch, your virtual character punches, etc. Here are just a few benefits of VR fitness:
• You can work out from home but feel like you’re somewhere else. When you put the headset on, you will immediately feel like you’re inside of the game- a welcome change of environment if you also work from home!
• VR fitness feels like a game. This can be very engaging and help the time seem to fly by faster.
• You can ‘compete’ with friends by challenging them in a game to see one another’s score. This also allows for accountability as you work toward your fitness goals.
• With workout programs that allow you to select the level of difficulty, virtually anyone can participate and start today.
BUILDING A SMART HOME GYM
If you want to work out from home, but you still crave a fitness community, then building a smart home gym can help you bridge the gap. A smart home gym will include some type of exercise equipment with a ‘smart’ element – like a screen to stream workouts.
Companies like Peloton have made it easier than ever to work out from the comfort of your own home while accessing the best instructors and an entire community of people who also want to get fit from home. You get the feel of working out in a group fitness environment with high-energy classes and lots of motivation! If you’ve ever experienced gym anxiety or feel self-conscious while working out in groups, a smart home gym is a great solution for you.
Even better—many fitness classes are available both live and on demand, so you can attend whenever it’s convenient for you. A smart home gym offers the best of both worlds when it comes to the convenience of training at home and the importance of being part of a community that can offer some social support and accountability.
Whether you’ve been training for a while or you’re new to the fitness scene, be on the lookout for all the ways to stay fit using technology. There’s no need to completely re-vamp your whole routine if it’s currently working but incorporating some of these new trends can certainly enhance your training routine and your results.
Did one of these fitness trends stand out to you? Give it a try!
Kinsey Mahaffey, MPH, is a Houston-based fitness educator, personal trainer and health coach who developed her commitment to lifelong fitness while playing Division I volleyball. She’s passionate about helping others cultivate a healthy lifestyle and enjoys educating other fitness professionals who share this vision. She’s a Master Instructor and Master Trainer for NASM.