2016 fitness trends

Ramp up your workout regime with our roundup of the top five fitness trends

By Joanna Reeves
Published 1 Feb 2016, 11:00 GMT

Ramp up your workout regime with our roundup of the top five fitness trends for this year.
Words: Chris Peacock and Joanna Reeves

01 Wearable tech

The number of fitness trackers, smart watches and exercise apps from the likes of Fitbit, Jawbone and Garmin has boomed in recent years. But it's only now that wearable tech is really starting to change the way we plan and manage our workouts by offering tailored exercises and smart notifications as well as data.

Try this:

Work out like a pro with workout tech handpicked by the fitness elite, from Olympic cyclist Jason Kenny to personal trainer Matt Roberts.

Read more:

Top 5: fitness gadgets

02 Bodyweight training

Getting in shape needn't mean paying extortionate gym fees – the demand for back-to-basics strength training is more popular than ever as the use of minimal equipment makes it an affordable anywhere workout. Moves like squats, planks, burpees and push-ups will always be in style.

Try this:

Learn how to get in shape using your own body weight — think everything from pull-ups and push-ups to general calisthenics and biometrics — with Spartanfam. Details: £10, drop-in class, or £45 a month for unlimited classes at Spartanfam's west London and east London venues, and the Talacre Centre in NW5.


03 Functional fitness

Cardio and resistance workouts are all well and good, but are they training your body to handle real-life situations? Functional fitness is based on the idea that the workouts we do should mimic and support daily activities, like carrying heavy luggage up stairs, through exercises that allow your muscles to work together.

Try this:

Work out with personal trainer Jordan Swailes, who offers functional fitness sessions in a handful of parks throughout London, from St John's Wood and Queen's Park to Primrose Hill, Maida Hill and Hyde Park. Training is tweaked to suit your lifestyle, so if you need to lift heavy objects in your work, sessions may involve exercises such as the dead lift, bent row and military press, while if you need explosive power in your everyday life, you'll bust your way through explosive compound lifts and bodyweight movements. Details: £50 per single session, or package prices available.


04 Indoor Parkour

The highly skilled movement-based exercise of parkour (or freerunning) is now moving from the tough city streets into gym environments, where everyone can have a go at leaping, vaulting, jumping and balancing their way to a healthier, fitter, more capable self.

Try this:

Held at a smattering of locations throughout London, Parkour's classes range from mastering a specific parkour skill — Passing Obstacles is a dizzying mix of vault techniques, underbars, flow drills, dive rolls and wall-run — to Parkour Roots, which involves training on the city streets, adapting to new terrains, different obstacles and varied challenges. Price: from £60 per month.


05 Bouldering

Essentially rock climbing without ropes, bouldering is emerging as one of the best full body workouts, utilising forearms, biceps, back, legs and core, while boosting flexibility and cardio fitness. An added bonus is that climbing centres tend to be very social places, often free of workout fanatics and gym obsessives.

Try this:

Whether you're a beginner hitting the wall for the first time or a skilled climber, The Arch Climbing Wall in Bermondsey can't fail to hold your interest with around 300-400 different routes (updated regularly) over a 11,000sq ft bouldering wall. Price: £20 (introductory class), followed by a single session from £6.50 (off-peak). Unlimited monthly passes from £50.


Images of 02, 04 and 05


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