trapezing
Hot trends for the New Year

Fitness is a lot like fashion – trends have a tendency to cycle in and out of style every 20 to 30 years. Case in point: Jazzercise. While the original dance revolution never completely faded from sight, it’s made a big comeback in the last few years. And that’s not the only example:

  • Kettlebells were the hot trend of the 1700s (yes, the 1700s!), but regained popularity in the last 10 years as a hot “new” trend.
  • Calisthenics (standard bootcamp exercises) were a favorite in the ’50s and ’60s – but with the explosion of bootcamps over the last 15 years, you’d think they were a brand new invention.
  • Rowing was a fad of ’80s and early ’90s that largely went out of style, but the rickety machines from yesteryear have been dusted off and revamped for the modern fitness enthusiast.

Like fashion, there’s only so much you can do to update and change your fitness experience. A squat is a squat is a squat, regardless of whether you’re doing it atop a BOSU ball or while under a bar of heavy weights. The end results might be different, and your enjoyment might be different, but the movement itself is the same.

And while there’s occasionally a class, a piece of equipment, or a new methodology (Pilates, anyone?) that comes along and changes the face of the industry, most of what’s out there are simply fresh takes on old favorites. With that in mind, we wanted to highlight a few of the coolest fresh takes on fitness to hit the streets in 2014.

1. the body barre’s Barre X

What happens when you combine a barre workout with a TRX routine? the body barre’s Barre X class. The only class of its kind in Colorado, Barre X is designed to harness the toning benefits of barre classes with the core strengthening benefits of TRX. If you’re not quite sure what that means, grab a TRX and try these three sweet moves:

Plank

barre x plank
Targets: Core, arms
The Move: Hold body in plank position
Modification: Place 1 foot on the floor
Progression: Cross one leg over the other

Arabesque

barre x arabesque

Targets: Glutes and hamstring
The Move: Lift and lower leg up and down an inch (small pulses) while keeping heel of standing leg off the ground, hips squared, back straight and head forward
Modification: Perform the exercise at the barre or holding onto a stable fixture
Progression: Raise the heel of the standing leg

Attitude Devant

barre x attitude devant

Targets: Adductors
The Move: Lift and lower leg up and down an inch (small pulses) while keeping heel of standing leg off the ground
Modification: Perform the exercise at the barre or holding onto a stable fixture
Progression: Raise the heel of the standing leg

2. Long distance skateboarding

Skateboarding is nothing new, and racing is nothing new, but when you put skateboarding and racing together in the context of long-distance events, you have a whole new experience. The beauty is that it’s accessible to all and it’s great for cardiovascular fitness, balance, and coordination. Best of all, it’s the first extreme sport that’s shown huge growth potential for females. According to Jonathan Strauss, one of the founders of the International Distance Skating Association (IDSA), “Women can get started with [the sport] for an investment of about $175 for a helmet and complete longboard. It’s very easy to learn on your own, but most longboarders are very inclusive and are happy to share their experience with someone. ¬†Longboards are easier to balance on, are more stable, and have bigger wheels than traditional skateboards, making cruising more pleasurable.”

3. The New York Health and Racquet Club Doonya

doonya

After Zumba took the world by storm, dance classes shot to the top of the list of must-try fitness trends, and Doonya is no different. Except that it is. Doonya breaks away from the standard dance class by featuring fast-moving, high-energy traditional Indian dance steps, all set to the sound of your favorite Bollywood music. If you’ve ever watched a Bollywood dance on So You Think You Can Dance?, you know just how tough these moves can be. Lucky for you, they’re so much fun you won’t even realize how hard you’re working.

4. Flying trapeze

Dr. Kathy Gruver, PhD, a natural health speaker and writer says, “I do trapeze at least once a month for exercise and I see it becoming a very popular fitness trend. Trapeze not only requires strength, flexibility and stamina (and awesome core muscles), but also exercises your brain and reaction time. I’m totally obsessed and see a lot of others joining the ranks.”

While trapeze itself isn’t necessarily new, its accessibility certainly is. If you wanted to find a trapeze class 20 years ago, you would have had to join the circus. These days trapeze and aerial experiences are popping up all over the country.

5. The New York Health and Racquet Club High Kick

high kicks

Any woman who’s ever watched a performance by the Rockettes has wondered how in the world those dancers kick their legs up so high. With the High Kick class offered at The New York Health and Racquet Club, participants have the chance to immerse themselves in the Rockettes experience, high kicks and all. The dance portion of the class includes moves like toy soldier marches, time steps and box steps while the leg workout includes high kick lines and barre choreography.

6. Active Island Tours and Events Running Tours

east endeavor tour

Running is fun, and traveling is fun, so why not combine the two? More and more companies are offering fitness travel experiences, and just one of those experiences is the Active Island Tours and Events on the island of St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Sign up for a guided run or walk around the island, culminating with a complimentary Cruzan rum cocktail – yum!

7. The New York Health and Racquet Club Pilates Babies

baby and mom pilates

Even if your gym provides childcare for your baby, chances are they have a “no crying, no changing” policy that can hinder your workout experience. Luckily, more gyms are finding ways to safely open classes up to moms and their little ones. The Pilates Babies class at The New York Health and Racquet Club is one great example – new moms get to strengthen their core while interacting with other moms, and babies relax on the center mat and take in the class, reducing the likelihood of separation anxiety.

What’s your favorite new take on fitness?

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