Fitness Trends 2021
The from 40,000 gyms, fitness studios, and spas that have been able to reopen, shows that the at-home workouts are shifting back and returning to in-person experiences.
The data is broken out into the following categories:
- Fitness and Wellness Experiences We Are Booking Right Now
- The 5 Reasons People Are Returning to IRL Experiences
- Trends To Expect: June 2021 and Beyond
- These are the top 10 classes and appointments we’re getting back to
- Strength Training
- Indoor Cycling
- Gym Time
- Livestream Yoga
The top five reasons people are returning to IRL experiences
Better access to equipment
Two-thirds of people say access to equipment is one of the main reasons they are heading back to class.
Four of the top five fitness genres with the highest recent reservation volumes use equipment that is typically not found in home gyms.
Feeling good physically and mentally
60% of people say in-person classes and appointments are better for their mental health than an at-home digital routine.
Pushing ourselves to achieve more
81% of people say they push themselves harder in class than they do on their own – which makes sense considering there’s not a tempting couch or needy pet nearby.
Receiving guidance from instructors
74% of people prefer to have an instructor’s direction and encouragement when working out.
67% of people say in-studio classes make it easier to work out regularly and keep up a routine.
Trends to expect in 2021 and beyond
Here’s how our behavior has shifted since studios and spas have reopened and the trends we should expect for the second half of 2021:
In Real Life (IRL) experiences are back and here to stay
Nine of the current top 10 experiences getting booked are in-person classes and appointments.
Once we go back to in-person experiences, we keep going back. Among users who have returned to class, average usage is 10% higher than it was before the pandemic.
The after work class is back on our calendars
5:30 p.m. has just made a comeback as the time we are most likely to break a sweat; earlier during the pandemic we saw lunchtime workouts score the #1 spot.
Lunchtime workouts are still popular (12pm is the second most popular class time), but we are finally venturing out and using an end of day workout as the perfect way to create separation from our email, take a deep breath and kickbox our way through some workday frustrations. Here at Yogasakti, we are adding more evening classes along we are affiliating with Sleeping Tiger Fitness & Martial Arts.
Yoga is growing a loyal following
Livestream yoga is the only digital class type in the top 10 most booked classes and appointments.
In-studio yoga has climbed to the second most popular class type since studios have reopened. It’s likely that the at-home yoga spike produced some new students, and that both new and seasoned yogis are excited to practice with a community again.
Outdoor classes continue to boom in popularity
The outdoor trend first started as a way for studios to offer classes while their indoor spaces were closed. Since May 2020, there has been a 917% increase in the number of studios offering outdoor classes.
Outdoor classes continue to grow in popularity — May 2021 saw the most outdoor reservations in a single month ever.
Yogasakti has early morning outdoor bootcamps and yoga in the park.
The Surprising Benefits of Strength Training
Any time you move an object from one position to another, you’re exerting muscular force. That object could be a dumbbell. It could be a ball. It could be your own body. Each time you do this, your muscles learn to move more efficiently and move more mass. This is strength training. It’s physics!
Strength training is an essential part of any fitness program, whether you’re a distance runner, a weekend cyclist or a yoga enthusiast. Training your body to bear more weight and move efficiently creates a solid foundation on which you can layer other exercises.
If this all sounds super boring and you’re already picturing endless reps of biceps curls and lateral rows at the gym, stop right there! There are lots of ways to make strength training a fun workout, and there are many reasons to do it.
What is strength training?
Any activity that uses muscular force with the intention to build the body’s ability to create and use that force is strength training. The action of working with resistance—moving an object like a kettlebell, a resistance band, your own bodyweight, a dumbbell—creates tiny tears in your muscles. In the hours and days following a workout, your body regenerates and repairs these tears. The muscle becomes stronger and can more easily move that same weight again the next time you repeat the movement.
Strength training, obviously, makes you stronger. But why is this important?
There are several reasons you should consider adding strength training to your life, especially when it comes to your physical self.
Being strong—not just able to lift heavy loads, but more agile, more powerful and more balanced—is the foundation for a healthy, more injury-proof body. Our muscles are where movement is rooted, so no matter which other activities you like to do, or what your daily life requires of you, building strength will make those things feel more effortless. Not only are you training your muscles, you’re training the central nervous system synapses that control and execute these movements. Everything will become smoother and easier to access with time, both physically and neurologically.
When done properly, strength training works muscles in the right alignment, strengthening the body symmetrically and evenly. This improves posture and can alleviate pain and problems associated with misalignment.
Muscle cells also burn energy more quickly and efficiently than fat cells. The more strength training you do, the more muscle you develop, the higher your lean body mass and the higher your metabolism. This is one of the reasons trainers will focus heavily on strength training for individuals looking to lose weight. Muscle burns more at rest than fat does, so even after you train, you’ll continue to burn calories. Keeping this up over the long term makes maintaining a healthy body weight easier.
This increased energy is also noticeable in the body as you train regularly. You can expect to feel more energized during your day, have better endurance for daily tasks and sleep better at night. (All of that muscle repair takes it out of you! Your body will thank you with a much-needed good rest.)
Finally, as we age, our muscle mass naturally decreases. Training at all stages of life helps maintain a healthy level of active, strong muscles, which in turn decreases our risk of falling, broken bones and postural problems.
Strength training is one of the quickest ways to see changes happen in your body, whether it’s a little extra tone or a noticeable increase in ease of movement. For this reason, it’s a great way to feel awesome about your accomplishments and boost confidence (hello, motivation to keep going!).
It also releases a rush of endorphins the way running does, so you’ll leave your workout feeling thoroughly stoked about life. The norepinephrine released when you strength train can also counter the effects of stress. These effects can carry throughout your day, especially if you tune into those noticeable changes to your physicality above.
With so many different types of strength to train for your options to get your body toned and strong are almost endless.
Don’t be overwhelmed—everything is scalable to meet you where you are. Strength training is one of the most customizable workouts, and you’ll get from it what you put in. Start slow and low, and get ready to be impressed with how much your body can handle.
Whatever your goals and whatever your interests, there is a type of strength training that you’ll love. and we all need that little rush of endorphin!