Fads and fitness

Tags: Good Living
As a generation, we are spoilt for choice. We have so many cuisines to choose from and so many brands in clothing and footwear to pick. Everywhere you look, there is a lot choice. Fitness is no different. Every year, different options are made available to fitness enthusiasts that may look and sound attractive, but it can be quite confusing to come to a decision as to what routine to follow.

When looking at new techniques, it is very important to remember one crucial fact. The human body can only move in a limited number of ways, and all exercise techniques, even the seemingly new ones, are more often than not, just innovative and insightful re-interpretations of existing ideas and techniques.

As I look back on the year gone by, the notable thing about the fitness trends which created the maximum buzz were not new, but techniques that had alwaysbeen around but were reinvented year. Very often, new fitness techniques are creative combinations of existing techniques, such as Yogalates and Taebo, just to name a couple.

For instance, a training programme called CrossFit, which has been around for 13 years, was one of the most talked about and hyped-up fitness routines of this year. It is a training regime that builds strength and conditioning through extremely varied and challenging workouts. Each day, the workout tests a different part of your functional strength or conditioning, not specialising in any particular thing, but with the goal of building a body that’s capable of practically anything and everything.

Another hot fitness trend of 2013 has been the obstacle course, which is a pre-determined course with jumps, and other obstructions that need to be overcome by the participant using their own body strength. Typically, one would associate obstacle courses with army training, but its ‘civilian’ avatar provides a different and very challenging workout.

TRX has also been another buzzword for 2013, and slowly and steadily it is becoming available in a number of gyms and fitness centres across India. Invented by a former US Navy Seal, TRX is a full-body strength workout that utilises a person’s own body weight instead of relying on machines or dumbbells. It’s good for endurance athletes, power lifters, and those new to fitness as well.

Our last entry on the fitness trends of 2013 would be the ‘hybrid’ technique of the year called Piloxing. It combines Pilates and boxing, and is excellent for burning fat and toning muscles using core-centric interval training. The workout combines all the power moves of boxing for that intense cardio to burn calories; however it incorporates lots of Pilates movements as well to help the body tone and strengthen. Typically, proper boxing gloves are worn to give the workout that extra punch.

As 2013 draws to an end and we all start making new year resolutions, I would like to make a suggestion. Keep your fitness resolutions realistic and flexible and use the innumerable choices available to try out different workouts till you find one that really appeals you and one you would want to stick to.

(The author is a wellness expert and runs a fitness centre in New Delhi)

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