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The Biggest Fitness Trends Of 2023 According To The Experts

Silhouettes of two men jog as the sun rises behind them

The fitness industry is expected to grow by 171.75% to $434.74 billion by 2028 and is currently booming across the globe.

There is an increased interest in different types of fitness, including different specializations, changes to the way the industry approaches certain practices, and more.

Among the biggest, most exciting, and challenging fitness trends of 2023, here are a few that we are especially excited about and can expect to see more of:

Virtual Reality Workouts and Exercise Programs

With the Metaverse, AR technology, and VR becoming more accessible to mainstream populations, it’s no surprise that VR workouts and exercise programs are also becoming more mainstream.

In fact, some of the largest tech companies and innovators are launching their own VR headsets and programs that offer clients all kinds of workout experiences, such as mountaineering, trekking, biking, and so on.

This means that professionals will need to find innovative uses for their fitness trainer certifications and experience to adapt to this new technology, perhaps explore these avenues for growing their practice, and see how they can innovatively incorporate VR into their own workout programs. It’s an opportunity to collaborate, design workout programs based, and connect with clients more effectively. The rapidly changing and immersive tech world around us is giving fitness professionals a run for their money and forcing them to get on board with the biggest fitness trends of 2023 and onward.A fitness trainer performs a lat pull-down while looking into the camera

Functional Training Workouts Focused on Posture

Functional training has been one of the biggest fitness industry trends in recent years and focuses extensively on improving day-to-day life and making everyday tasks easier. A major part of it is improving posture via workouts and exercise, targeting various issues and common complaints that people suffer from via exercise.

Posture-based functional training and exercise are excellent for people who do desk jobs or help people perform a wide range of everyday tasks such as lifting their children, carrying groceries, walking on the job, and more. It’s one of the biggest fitness trends of 2023 and will center around improving and optimizing clients’ experience and quality of life through exercise.

Many fitness trainers can offer it as part of their services and aim to empower clients to lead more fulfilling, active, and comfortable lives, improve their health and fitness levels, and get stronger. It’s a new, more holistic approach to fitness that goes beyond the limiting expectation and treatment of fitness as a means to a skinnier body. You can obtain a fitness trainer certificate in health coaching and other relevant specializations to learn more about functional training.

Mobility Training is Also Gaining More Popularity

Additionally, we’ll also be seeing the emergence and popularity of mobility training as a major fitness trend in 2023. Building on the same notion of fitness as a way to improve your quality of life, mobility training is being touted as the best fitness workout of 2023 by sources like GQ.

The idea of popularizing mobility workouts is that they allow individuals to safely and effectively assess muscle groups, joints, and tendons if they may not have a complete range of motion. The idea is to train and condition those muscles and joints for a greater range of motion, flexibility, and functionality in order to allow better usage, stability, and strength simultaneously. It’s one of the best approaches to working out, and typically a part of most well-rounded programs and will be everywhere in 2023. As a fitness trainer, it’s essential that you up your game and learn how to focus on mobility training and offer your clients a high-quality experience.

Biophilia Workouts That Immerse You Into Nature

While we’re seeing more of a culture surrounding studio and gym workouts, online workouts, and even VR workouts, as mentioned above, one of the most significant fitness trends 2023 will bring is biophilia workouts.

Don’t raise the alarm bells just yet–it’s not quite what you think.

Biophilia workouts are simply those workouts and exercise forms that focus on connecting with nature. This includes hiking, biking, running outdoors, trekking, outdoor yoga, and other forms of immersive workouts and exercises that allow participants to connect with nature. This comes as a refreshing change from the overly technological, digital, and fast-paced workout trends that have dominated the market for years now, and allows personal health and fitness coaches to create unique new programs and encourage clients to workout outdoors, rough it up, and get fresh air in simultaneously.

Another exciting possibility for the more ambitious fitness professional is to take advantage of this trend as a way to plan retreats and outdoor excursions and introduce outdoor gyms and workout areas in their existing facilities.

A man performs a lunge while working out with focus

Weight and Strength Training for Women in Fitness

While this isn’t new by any means, one of the most exciting fitness trends for 2023 is an increase in weight and strength training for women. The benefits of different types of strength training for women, including lifting weights, go far beyond aesthetic purposes. It’s incredibly effective for strengthening joints, building lean muscle mass, burning fat, increasing mobility and bone strength, and much more. The mental health benefits are another plus, allowing women to benefit from this kind of exercise in numerous ways.

In getting certified as a personal trainer, you will learn how to help your female fitness clients optimize their health via weight training and lifting, improving their stamina, and much more. There are various kinds of strength training workouts and movements that you can add to your clients’ schedules and encourage them to learn more about the benefits of strength training beyond the misconceptions and myths that are prevalent.

Free or Intuitive Movement That Flows Naturally

What comes as a surprise to many fitness professionals is the increasing shift toward free and intuitive movement, which essentially means that workout participants go by what feels good rather than a strict, general structure. There are various approaches to free and intuitive movement, too, with some fitness trainers choosing to let their clients lead based on what they prefer and enjoy, while others follow a particular sequence, series of movements, or other guides.

It can be challenging to plan workouts and classes based on these principles, and it can take a while to fully get a hold of, but the crux is to focus on energy and building a stronger mind-body connection rather than fixating on minor details. It’s a way to connect the body to movement and enjoy how it feels in the moment rather than fretting over how deep the stretch was, how advanced the movement is, and how you’re progressing.

Workout Stacking and Breaking Down the Structure

Neither you nor your fitness clients are alone if you’re not crazy about long-drawn-out workouts that drag on for hours on end. That’s one of the reasons why HIIT and shorter, more intense workouts have gained so much popularity in recent years. However, one fitness trend in 2023 that you’ll see more of is workout stacking, which involves using diverse, varied workouts in shorter segments, creating a longer workout.

It’s not necessarily high-intensity or following the pattern that HIIT does, but it’s simply weaving different types of workouts to create one that’s engaging, enjoyable, and keeps clients on their toes. Obtain fitness trainer certificates in multiple specializations that will allow you to develop and design and combine different workouts effectively.

For instance, you could break a 45-minute workout into 15 minutes of strength, 15 minutes of cardio, and 15 minutes of yoga and stretching to get the benefits of all of the above.

A person’s hand preparing to grab and lift a barbell

Group Fitness Classes of All Kinds are Coming Back

If you have an ​​in-person group fitness certification, or want to obtain it, now is the perfect time because group fitness classes of all kinds are making a comeback. The resurgence of group fitness classes is one of the biggest fitness trends for 2023, and part of it has to do with the isolation that COVID-19 brought.

You’ll see more clients seeking out group fitness classes, including zumba, strength training, HIIT, spinning, and much more. It’s no surprise that group fitness is rapidly gaining popularity as the go-to workout form, given that it allows people to feel a sense of community and connection and has a strong social aspect to it as well. You get a workout, make friends, catch up with acquaintances, and feel more inspired to reach your goals with their support–what more could you want?

Exercise Going Beyond Hardcore Workout Programs

Perhaps one of the most unexpected fitness trends and changes that 2023 will bring is an increasing shift in the definition of exercise.

Rather than thinking of exercise as an intense, painful, sweaty movement and demanding workouts, the conversation is shifting to include all kinds of movement as a legitimate form of exercise. For instance, walking your dog, dancing, doing certain kinds of physically taxing chores such as gardening or cleaning, and other kinds of movement are increasingly being counted as workouts. This ties into the idea of NEAT (non-exercise activity thermodynamics), which addresses how we burn calories and continue to stay active outside of formal workouts as well. As a fitness trainer, it helps to understand what your clients’ activity levels look like outside the gym, how they prefer to get movement in, what they enjoy doing on a daily basis, and how you can optimize their workouts based on their general activity levels.

A woman stretches her arms sideways while meditating outdoors

Hybrid Workouts and Fully At-Home Fitness Training

Despite the rising popularity of group fitness classes and in-person training, we’re also seeing the rise of hybrid and fully-at-home fitness training. It’s exciting for professionals with fitness trainer certificates and an interest in online services to work with clients virtually or in a hybrid model. You can take parts of your workout program to virtual spaces and parts of it in person, which can help you increase the number of clients you take, save time, and even offer more affordable services to those who want.

Hybrid and online fitness training offer greater convenience, comfort, and affordability to everyone, including trainers, and it’s a refreshing change to see them steadily increase in popularity this year.

Return of the 80’s Workout Styles–But Upgraded

This may come as a surprise to many fitness professionals, but one of the coolest fitness trends of 2023 is the return of the 80s workout style–but with upgrades. From stepping workouts to dance aerobics and tons of core work, this style is going to be big. Perhaps the only difference is that it’s more upgraded and uses modern fitness science and knowledge to improve it, but the general principle remains consistent and as popular as ever!

A closeup of two women holding weights while working out

Stay Up to Date on the Latest Trends and Practices Through Our Health and Fitness Certifications Online

As the fitness industry continues to adapt and evolve, it’s important for trainers and professionals to stay in the loop, upgrade their skill sets, and continue working in their field. W.I.T.S. Education’s health and fitness certifications online can help you achieve that by giving you the necessary training, education, and knowledge that it takes to keep up with the incredibly fast-paced and rapidly changing fitness industry.

Not only do we have some of the most comprehensive personal training courses, but we also offer continuing education courses in a variety of specializations and niche areas, which allow you to work as a personal health and fitness coach or in other roles. You can also subscribe to our blog to keep up with the latest, most exciting fitness trends of 2023 and other updates from the industry. Not just that, but W.I.T.S. is the Practical Skills Certification and we offer in-person mastering of the professional skills.

To learn more about our certifications and courses, reach out to us, and our team can help you find support.

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