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What Are The Top Fitness Trends For 2016?

fitness trends 2016

The new year is finally upon us.

And for many of us, this means a fresh evaluation of our goals, and making plans to tackle things this coming year that weren’t a top priority in 2015.

So if you were slacking with your workouts last year, now is a great time to get back on the wagon and start this year off strong!

But where should you start?

Well, if you’ve been reading our blog for awhile, you probably have a pretty good sense of our approach to fitness – but that doesn’t mean that this is the only way to exercise…

In fact, as you might expect, the beginning of the year is also a perfect time to step back and take a look at some of the upcoming trends in fitness for the year ahead.

Fortunately, the American College of Sports Medicine conducted an extensive survey on this very topic, and have recently published their findings.

So, in this article, I’m going to be exploring 10 of the most popular fitness trends for 2016, so that you can figure out which of these – if any – you might want to try.

Let’s get right into it.

1) Wearable Technology

wearable technology

It’s not a big surprise that wearable technology is at the top of the list.

This refers to all the different types of fitness trackers that are on the market – such as Fitbit, Misfit, and even the Apple Watch.

These devices are ushering in a data-driven approach to fitness, where you can track the number of steps you’ve taken, the calories you’ve burned, and even monitor your heart rate and blood pressure thoughout the day.

Analysts expect the fitness wearables market to reach $6 billion in 2016, so don’t expect this trend to peter out any time soon.

For more info on fitness trackers – and my opinion on whether or not they are worth the money – take a look at my article here.

2) Body Weight Training

body weight training

Just like last year, body weight training is up there towards the top of the list of upcoming fitness trends for 2016.

There is a certain simplicity to body weight training that many people like – since it doesn’t involve any conventional gym equipment or other expensive pieces of apparatus.

What’s more, you can do it anywhere, making it a lot more versatile than many other forms of exercise.

However, I should mention that body weight training has certain limits, which I discuss extensively in this article.

3) High Intensity Interval Training

high intensity interval training

High intensity interval training, otherwise known as HIIT, has been the rage for a couple of years now – and is showing no signs of slowing down.

Basically, this is a form of exercise where the intensity is constantly alternating – typically between periods of low/moderate intensity and high intensity.

These types of workouts generally don’t take as long to do, compared to more traditional cardio workouts, and can even burn more calories afterwards through something known as EPOC.

For more information on HIIT training compared to regular, steady state cardio, check out my comparison article here.

4) Strength Training

strength training

Now this is a fitness trend that we can definitely get behind here at Caliber Fitness!

Strength training is pretty much what it sounds like: focusing your exercise routine on getting progressively stronger (and more muscular).

This typically involves working out with free weights, such as barbells and dumbbells, but can also include machines and other, more specialized types of equipment.

5) Educated & Experienced Fitness Professionals

certified fitness professional

With health and fitness becoming increasingly popular worldwide, there is also a greater demand for quality information and education.

You see, there are a lot of charlatans and fitness ‘gurus’ who simply aren’t very qualified to teach or instruct other people.

For this reason, many people are requiring that their trainers are certified with one of the major, accredited agencies, such as NASM, ACSM, ACE, or ISSA, just to name a few.

6) Personal Training

personal trainers

If you’re someone who’d like some help getting in shape, then personal training might be right up your ally (not that we’re biased, of course).

There are many different types of personal training – ranging from 1-on-1 training, online personal training, or group fitness classes.

To learn more about whether personal training might be a good fit for you, take a look at my article here.

7) Functional Fitness

functional fitness

Exercising doesn’t always have to be about vanity, weight loss, or even cardiovascular health.

In fact, one of the biggest trends for 2016 is something called ‘functional fitness’.

The goal of this type of training, as you might expect, is to get more proficient with certain functional movements that you might use in your day-to-day life – like mowing the lawn, carrying groceries, or even chopping wood.

8) Fitness Programs For Older Adults

fitness programs older adults

Fitness isn’t just for people in their 20s and 30s.

Nope, this year the baby boomers are proving that their exercise needs are important too.

Maintaining strength and mobility are vital as we get older, so having a fitness program that addresses these needs in your 50s and beyond is a smart move.

And since these boomers generally have more disposable income than many young people, they are often even more interested in personal training and other such specialized fitness services.

9) Exercise & Weight Loss

exercise weight loss

This is a tried and true reason that many people want to work out, so it’s not surprising to see it included on this year’s list.

Indeed, with obesity levels at their highest rates, it makes perfect sense how working out primarily to burn excess fat and lose weight would be a major drive for many people.

10) Yoga


Yoga is different to other forms of fitness on this list, but is a massively popular option for people that don’t like conventional exercise.

For many people, yoga provides a way to stay fit, increase flexible and mobility, as well as providing the benefits of a relaxing, spiritually rewarding experience.

Summing It Up

Now these are only 10 of the most popular, up-and-coming fitness trends for 2016, and there are many more that aren’t covered on this list.

In fact, I’ve also included an infographic from ASCM below, which highlights these 10 trends, as well as some others that I didn’t discuss in this article.

Now before I sign off, I want to be clear that I am not specifically endorsing any of these trends.

Just as with any popular fad or trend, you should take your time to investigate the pros and cons before diving in head first.

ACSM 2016 fitness trends

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