But some fads have stood the test of time for one big reason: they actually work. From mobile apps and fitness trackers to kickboxing and Zumba, these fitness trends are here to stay.
HIIT Workouts1 of 20
You can hardly talk about weight loss anymore without mentioning High Intensity Interval Training, or HIIT workouts. These workouts not only burn an insane number of calories, but they also require less time, making them an ideal fitness option for busy, modern gym rats.
Zumba2 of 20
Zumba took off in the 1990's and is now offered at most gyms across the country. Not only does it get your heart rate up and your body moving, but the fun Latin dancing keeps participants coming back for more, crossing off one of the most important requirements for results-driven fitness—consistency.
Foam Rolling3 of 20
Post-workout recovery is important to every serious runner, cyclist or fitness enthusiast, which is why most now own foam rollers. The form of self-myofascial release allows you to stretch out a muscle, activate soft tissue or target a trigger point that's been bothering you in your training, helping speed up recovery.
Mobile Fitness Apps4 of 20
It's hard to remember the fitness world before the introduction of mobile apps, but we can't say we miss it much. Whether you want a 7-minute workout, a training plan for your first 5K or a guided bodyweight routine, you can have it all—usually for free—thanks to a mobile app on your phone.
Boot Camps5 of 20
Military-style boot camps, usually modeled after SEAL and Army training, aren't for the faint of heart. They may be an especially intense way to work out, but that's also what makes them so effective, especially if you're looking to get in great shape before a vacation or a special occasion. Though most boot camps happen locally—part of their appeal, since you can meet new fitness-minded people in your area—you can also purchase boot camp DVDs to do in the comfort of your own home.
Barre Workouts6 of 20
These ballet-inspired workouts focus on precision and small, controlled movements that will challenge your muscles in a new way. Though you won't get much cardio in, you will get to tone your legs, arms and core. Many people swear by the barre method, and the number of barre studios across the country have skyrocketed over the last 10 years. Pure Barre alone has around 300 locations nationwide.
Obstacle Course Races7 of 20
Warrior Dash, Spartan Race, Tough Mudder—you've probably heard of at least one of these popular obstacle course races, which combine a traditional running race with physical challenges. Not only will you get a great workout in, but you can test your athleticism and grit in a way you never have before with daunting walls to scale, barbed wire to evade and climbing ropes to conquer.
Pilates8 of 20
Though Pilates has been around for quite some time, it took off in the late 20th century when Hollywood stars began to swear by its results. Pilates focuses on strengthening and stabilizing your core through very precise and controlled movements and, though it doesn't involve a ton of cardio, it's a great bodyweight workout.
Fitness Trackers9 of 20
There's probably not a single person reading this who doesn't either own a fitness tracker or know someone who does—that's how essential they've become to our everyday lives. Whether you want to count your steps, track your run or monitor your sleep quality, fitness trackers can do it all, and then deliver tons of valuable data straight to your smart phone.
Spin Classes10 of 20
Indoor cycling has been around since the 1990's, but it recently received an upgrade thanks to the rising popularity of boutique spin studios. In these studios, cycling becomes not only a great workout, but also an immersive experience, complete with darkened rooms, loud music and motivating coaches. At Soul Cycle, one of the most popular cycling boutiques, participants pay around $34 to attend a single class.
CrossFit11 of 20
CrossFit was first founded in California in 2000, and it wasn't long before gyms started popping up around the country. CrossFit's distinct identity is focused around functional fitness and physical preparedness, which means you'll see less cardio and more high-intensity weightlifting. CrossFit has become so popular that it's even achieved a cult-like cultural status among devotees.
Kickboxing12 of 20
Most major gyms now offer group kickboxing classes, and there are even fitness boutiques dedicated solely to this type of martial art. Kickboxing is a serious cardio workout, burning anywhere from 500-800 calories in a 60-minute session, and with all that twisting and turning, it's a great core workout, too.
Hot Yoga13 of 20
Sure, yoga has been around for thousands of years, but hot yoga—and more specifically, Bikram Yoga—didn't became a fitness fad until the 1970's. Held in a room heated to 104 degrees Fahrenheit, 90-minute hot yoga sessions burn more calories than traditional yoga, and many yogis argue the heat can be a therapeutic way to release toxins from the body.
Jazzercise14 of 20
Jazzercise is a multi-million dollar company, with over 8,300 franchises in 32 different countries. Like most dance-based classes, its success comes from its combination of two key elements: physical results and fun.
Most classes last around 60 minutes and focus on aerobic exercise while still targeting your major muscle groups. But more importantly, the classes are fun, especially if you love to dance. Great music paired with fun choreography makes it easy to stick to this fitness routine and see maximum results.
Pole Dancing15 of 20
Since the early 2000s, pole dancing has slowly transitioned from a form of exotic dance to an actual fitness regimen. Because of the nature of the activity, pole dancing requires an incredible amount of strength and flexibility from the participant, especially as you progress to advanced moves, such as climbs and inversions.
Competitions are now held all over the world and focus on pole dancing as an artistic and athletic feat. It's not just for women, either. Some studios offer classes just for men, and male pole dancers have placed in numerous international competitions.
Treadmill Desks and Standing Desks16 of 20
It's no secret that a sedentary lifestyle can seriously harm your health. From increased risks of heart disease, cancer and even osteoporosis, to a heightened chance of obesity, sitting all day is simply bad for you. But for most, it's a workplace necessity.
Nathan Edelson patented the treadmill desk in 1993. It has grown in popularity throughout the years, and in 2009, TrekDesk introduced the first adjustable treadmill desk with a universal design that can fit any existing treadmill. Though walking at a slow pace is no substitute for high-intensity aerobic exercise, it will help you keep your metabolism above a resting rate and reduce time spent sedentary. Simple standing desks have also become a popular alternative for those who don't have access to a treadmill.
Indoor Rock Climbing17 of 20
Unlike outdoor climbing, which can vary wildly based on weather and terrain, indoor climbing presents a safer, more controlled environment for less experienced climbers looking to reap similar physical benefits.
Indoor climbing has seen an average of 9 percent yearly growth since 2012, and climbing gyms can now be found all across the country. Most climbing competitions are even held in indoor gyms. In fact, it's become so popular that it was added to the lineup of sports for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. Not only does rock climbing in any form (indoor or outdoor) improve strength and endurance, but it also increases flexibility and challenges your problem-solving skills.
The Color Run18 of 20
Also known as, "The Happiest 5,000 Meters on the Planet," the Color Run held its first race in March 2011 for 6,000 participants. Only one year later, it hosted the race for more than 600,000 people in 50 North American cities. It has since—quite literally—swept the globe, and now you can find Color Runs in the United Arab Emirates, Africa, Asia, South America, New Zealand and more.
What makes this event so popular is its unique take on racing. The Color Run has no prizes or winners and is completely untimed—instead, the focus is on having fun. Throughout the race, runners are showered with brightly colored powders (usually made from corn starch), and both walkers and first-time runners are encouraged to participate.
Swiss Ball19 of 20
The Swiss ball was first developed in 1963, but it wasn't used for physical exercise until years later. Also known as a stability ball, the Swiss ball requires you to engage more muscles than you would while performing an exercise on a flat surface. Specifically, it engages your core and back muscles in order to stay upright and stable.
In addition to formal workouts, stability balls are now popping up in offices as a substitute for traditional chairs. Sitting on a Swiss ball can help engage the abdominal and back muscles and promote better posture.