Back to basics

Functional fitness, social exercise and intuitive eating are just some of the fitness trends set to dominate 2022.

Functional fitness, social exercise and intuitive eating are just some of the fitness trends set to dominate 2022, according to new research from Myprotein — https://us.myprotein.com/thezone/motivation/usas-most-popular-fitness-trends-2021/.

The sports nutrition brand teamed up with personal trainer Tom Hall to make some predictions about the fitness trends we might see in 2022. Here’s what Tom had to say:

1. Social Exercise: “People like seeing people — the interaction is so valuable, even if we don’t always think it is. While people may love being part of a gym thanks to having all the equipment they could ever need, they also love chatting and being sociable, as well as having other people around to provide motivation.”

“So, all things permitting, we’re expecting to see a return to doing things in person, as well as in groups, and maybe some dust settling on those home dumbbells.”

2. Cross Training & Functional Fitness: “The world is becoming less and less oriented around the traditional bodybuilding workout, and most trainers are now doing more functional based workout plans. Working on functional fitness can help with any number of different goals too, whether you’re looking to build muscle, lose weight or just maintain a good level of strength and fitness.”

3. Data-Driven Workout Plans: “Rather than just using technology to keep track of our steps or monitor our heart rate, we’re starting to see entire workout plans built around biometric data. And as technology continues to advance, we’ll be able to include more and more data in our plans — we may even start to get things like speed and power timings with our weightlifting.”

4. Even More Vegan: “Plant-based diets can still be powerful sources of nutrition and energy, and with enough planning and structure to your meals, can be high enough in protein for those looking to bulk up. You’ve got so much more variety now, with vegan protein bars and snacks, as well as loads of plant-based protein powders. The quality is getting better and better, so expect to see more of this over the coming year.”

5. Intuitive Eating: “People are taking a more holistic view to their physical and mental health, and intuitive eating can play an important part in this. With more thought about your eating, trying to enjoy food, rather than just thinking about numbers and macros, instead focusing on behaviors and building positive relationships with food and your overall diet.”

The Most and Least Popular Fitness Trends from 2021

As well as looking forward, Myprotein also took a look back over the past 12 months, using Google search data to highlight the USA’s most and least popular fitness trends.

In a sometimes frustrating year, Americans turned to various combat sports in an attempt to keep fit — and release some tension while they’re at it. Boxing came out on top, with a whopping 139% increase in searches. Mixed martial arts saw a 102% increase in search volume, with kickboxing (+48%) and karate (+29%) also enjoying boosts.

After the postponed games finally took place, 2021 saw a spike in Olympics-inspired workouts, including badminton (+70%), athletics (+47%), rowing (+43%), swimming (+33%) and tennis (+13%). And thanks to the viral TikTok trend, we also saw a spike in interest around hula hooping, with searches increasing by 70%.

Here’s the USA’s 10 most popular fitness trends from 2021:

♦ Boxing (+139%)

♦ Mixed Martial Arts (+102%)

♦ Ultimate Frisbee (+92%)

♦ Hula Hooping (+70%)

♦ Badminton (+70%)

♦ Cross Training (+65%)

♦ Barre (+54%)

♦ Kickboxing (+48%)

♦ Athletics (+47%)

♦ Parkour (+44%)

As well as the most popular trends, the research also highlighted the workouts Americans have fallen out of love with. Perhaps unsurprisingly, as we started to venture back outside this year, interest in home workouts fell by 45%, while we also saw interest decrease in a range of different exercises which are commonly done at home, needing minimal equipment and limited space.

Here’s the USA’s 10 least popular fitness trends from 2021:

♦ Spinning (-69%)

♦ Kettlebells (-49%)

♦ Home Workouts (-45%)

♦ Planking (-41%)

♦ Tabata (-33%)

♦ Burpees (-30%)

♦ Battle Ropes (-29%)

♦ Sit-Ups (-21%)

♦ Push-Ups (-21%)

♦ Bungee Workouts (-21%)

To find out more and see the full list of the USA’s most and least popular fitness trends, go to the Myprotein website at https://us.myprotein.com/thezone/motivation/usas-most-popular-fitness-trends-2021/.

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