Sound the trumpets and ring the bells, yoga has won! Tell ’em what they’ve won, Johnny. As it turns out, in the superlatives of the grand yearbook of modern exercise, yoga is the least likely to become a fizzle away fad when it comes to fitness trends. As in, plenty of exercise methods come and go (see: Richard Simmons, Tae Bo), but yoga has shown some real staying power, and it’s still going strong, according to the American College of Sports Medicine’s Worldwide Survey of Fitness Trends for 2015.
“The yoga folks surprise me every year,” the survey’s author and fitness-trend expert, Walter Thompson, told NPR. Apparently, part of the reason yoga has stuck around through the years is because there are so many different styles and variations. “They reinvent themselves so it continues to be popular,” said Thompson. Hence, yoga’s new bragging rights as the winningest and longest lasting “trend” (which is funny and ironic since it’s actually been around for so stinking long to begin with.)
What’s perhaps even more surprising is that Zumba, Pilates, and indoor cycling are NOT on the list. And neither is the seemingly insanely popular CrossFit. Why? Too many people are getting hurt.
“High-intensity interval training is the result of a lot of these infomercials,” says Thompson. “I think that in five years, we’re not going to be talking about [it].” Part of the reason, he suggests, is because there’s a high probability of injuring yourself when doing aggressive exercises.
High-intensity interval workouts like P90X are like driving a very fast car, he says. “You can go 90 miles per hour or you can go the speed limit, and the greater chance of having an accident is at 90 miles per hour.”
Slow and steady, yogsters. We give credit to The Cut‘s Maggie Lange for acknowledging yoga’s sticky winningness, adding that it’s “steady and stable, and prepared to stay forevermore.” And we have to agree that yoga indeed seems to be morphing and melding itself into everything from ballet to beer, which adds to its more mass appeal AND the gimmicky, trendy status, but we also happen to agree with The Cut commenter “cjbomb” as to one of the real reasons for yoga’s staying power:
“The Yoga Folks surprise me every year.” Mainly because we stick around to fix a lot of the injuries that are born out these other fitness trends year after year. Just a thought.
Touché, cjbomb. May we also venture to add that to many yoga is not just a physical exercise but a positive overall lifestyle of physical, mental and emotional wellbeing? And there’s actually a growing consciousness in the yoga world about how the physical practice affects our bodies and minds for the better? Maybe that’s why people stick with it and don’t just ditch it like a sweaty gym towel? PLUS anyone can do it at any age or ability. Just another thought.
So…what can we expect to be emerging trends if Zumba and CrossFit aren’t cool anymore? Wearable fitness gadgets and fitness for seniors. Yoga’s pretty much got those covered, too.
PS. Regular old exercise like walking, running and swimming don’t count as fitness trends or fads, but we’re pretty sure they’re still pretty popular.
image via Shutterstock