Rainbow Looms. Faux Hawks. Man Buns. Jams. Grunge. Mood Rings. Crocs.
We all are susceptible to trends. There is a lot of pressure to keep up with all that shines and glitters. I mean, we live in a world of immediate gratification, right? Text, email, prime…
One of the biggest industries to capitalize on trends is the fitness industry. There is always a new fad or craze making big promises. It is common to hear that it if we do this certain exercise or drink this particular shake, we will have our dream body. Too good to be true. Things that are not grounded in solid research and study fade away right beside the thigh master and the shake weight.
Anyone who has worked in the fitness industry for any length of time has seen their share of trends. The current trend has me on guard because it can affect your training sessions. It does not have a name, it is more of a new approach to training. This new approach upgrades exercises into something more difficult, heavier and faster before the basic movement is solid. It is promising almost instant results if you go as fast you can, as long as you can during every workout session.
But, as with all trends, Buyer Be Aware!
This poses the question: How can we avoid being trendy and making sure we are remaining safe and injury free?
- Form comes first. Take time to make sure the basic exercises are strong. Things like a body weight squat, a lunge or a push-up are excellent exercises to build upon. But the form has to be correct before we start adding on to these exercises with heavier weight or jumping.
- Switch it up. The body likes to be surprised with different exercises. I like when my clients do different exercises on days they are not with me. Try yoga. Take a class you’ve never taken before.
- Ask your trainer. The YMCA requires trainers to keep up on their certifications. Good trainers are movement specialist. They are well trained. They can see how you move. They can see the little tweaks that need to happen to make you stronger and better. They want to help! Interview them. Have they worked with clients your age, with your needs and your goals?
- Rest. A good, hard workout session is awesome. Even a good, hard workout session several days in a row is excellent. BUT, if your body is tired, listen to it. Everyone needs a rest day. It is OK to take one.
- Research. Before jumping into a new workout program, or trying out something that seems like a craze, do your own research. If it seems too good to be true, it is. Look for sustainable options, not trends.
- Be a team. The YMCA staff wants what’s best for you. Work together to design a workout plan that meets your needs, works around your injuries/health concerns and challenges you. If you have a personal trainer, they will push you to new challenges, but always in a safe, well-thought-out way.
Remember: what is hot today is ice cold tomorrow. Remember the days of thongs on the outside of your workout pants? It was a thing. Competitive Aerobic Dancing? If you need a laugh, YouTube it. And who could forget when Richard Simmons had us dancing with the Oldies. In an industry that has more updates than your iPhone, fundamentals are still never out of style.
Joy has been a certified Personal Trainer and Group Exercise Instructor since 2002. She has a degree in Exercise Science from Virginia Commonwealth University. When she’s not at the Y teaching or training, Joy distributes her time between her husband, homeschooling her three daughters, church, friends and traveling. At this point in life she has had to make room for dust bunnies, finding the other sock and fingerprints on her windows. She is also still trying to figure when to put laundry away! However, she would not change a thing…except the dust bunnies…