Want the inside track on the latest fitness trends? Whether it’s the weighted hula hoop on TikTok or meteoric rise of wearable tech, there’s always something new emerging in the industry. So, what’s hot in fitness and exercise right now?

In this article – we analyse the latest fitness and workout trends, along with what they mean for the industry.

We’ve spent 15+ years working in the fitness industry, from leading gym chains to global equipment manufacturers, so know the exercise market inside-out. We monitor the ever-changing workout market to identify trends and highlight these insights to the wider industry through our Research Reports and articles.

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Current Fitness Trends

We analysed fitness trend data and research from leading industry organisations to identify the macro trends that were consistent across the market.

Looking at the ACSM’s latest survey results, MindBody’s wellness report, and insights from our own audience of fitness business owners gave us a wealth of qualitative and quantitative info to draw on. While they don’t agree on everything (we’ll come to this in the context of strength training a bit later), it’s clear that there are patterns across the industry.

Current fitness trends that will remain popular in 2024 include wearables, strength training, programs for older adults, weight loss, and holistic wellness

  1. Wearable tech
  2. Strength training
  3. Programs for older adults
  4. Weight loss
  5. Holistic wellness 

For anyone in the fitness industry, these established trends are unlikely to come as a surprise. We’ll talk about emerging ones a bit further down, but first let’s explore these current ones in more detail…

Current & Emerging Health Fitness Trends

Wearable Tech

The fitness wearables market is worth $46.5bn and growing at a rate of 15-20%, supported by huge marketing investments from brands like Google and Apple. ACSM’s latest survey of almost 2000 fitness professionals put wearable tech as the #1 fitness trend for the third year in a row. It was also the top trend in 2016, 2017, 2019, and 2020, so is pretty well-established.

Strength Training

Strength training has been a staple exercise method since the earliest days of working out. MindBody’s most recent trends report predicts that strength will remain a top training area due to its importance in longevity and healthy aging. However, it plummeted in ACSM’s rankings from #2 in 2023 to #17 in 2024.

Chart Showing Top Fitness Trends 2018-2024
This chart is taken from our Fitness Industry 2024 Report and shows how the popularity of strength training (in blue) has trended in recent years.

Despite this, since governments include strength training in their core physical activity recommendations, we assess that demand for it is unlikely to diminish.

Fitness Programs for Older Adults

Fitness programs for older adults is a consistent trend across all the data sources we reviewed. It’s ACSM’s 3rd most popular fitness trend and highlighted as a growth area by MindBody who predict that ‘older adults will head to fitness studios in greater numbers’. It’s also a demographic that our audience of fitness business owners have flagged as one they intend to target in the future.

As people live longer and the global population ages, there’ll clearly be more demand in this area. Therefore programs for older adults is one trend that every fitness business and industry pro should be paying attention to.

Exercise for weight loss

Weight loss is always a central theme in the fitness industry and 2024 is no different. It’s not really surprising given weight loss is a $26bn industry in itself. But what is changing is the way society views and talks about excess weight – the fitness industry needs to take note of the body positivity and empowerment movement.

Holistic Wellness

Holistic wellness is another fitness trend that’s reflected across all the industry data. Worksite health promotion, exercise for mental health, lifestyle medicine, along with health and wellness coaching all feature in ACSM’s top 20 trends. Community and sleep are highlighted as trending areas in MindBody’s report, showcasing how consumers are viewing wellness through a broader lens than simply fitness and nutrition.

Wearables, strength training, programs for older adults, weight loss, and holistic wellness are the top fitness trends for 2024. They’re well established and look set to continue in the coming years. But what other health and fitness trends are emerging on the horizon?

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New Fitness Trends

One of the most fun things about working in health and fitness is that it’s always evolving. The science is constantly improving, consumer preferences are changing, and there’s always some creative workout brand coming up with new, innovative training methods. 2024 will be no different and that’s what keeps the sector fresh and exciting.

Emerging trends in the fitness industry include worksite health promotion, exercise for mental health, longevity, online personal training, and data-driven training technology. Let’s look at why they’re becoming increasingly popular…

List of 10 Growing Fitness Trends

Worksite health promotion

While corporate wellness isn’t new, it’s trending higher than ever in fitness circles. It was a new entrant into ACSM’s top 10 likely due to many businesses needing a workplace wellness offering to entice employees in the post-Covid era.

Exercise for mental health

Broader trends towards improving mental health are driving increased interest in the benefits exercise can offer. Stress reduction is one of the top reasons why people exercise, and its benefits in relation to depression and anxiety are increasingly well-known.

Longevity

Motivations for exercising are evolving – 10 years ago the top-cited reason was to look good, three years ago it was to control weight, and two years back it was stress relief. But last year, longevity was the most popular reason why people exercised so it’s a rapidly trending fitness topic.

Online personal training

While most digital fitness trends (other than mobile training apps) are less prominent this year, online personal training is bucking the trend. Other types of online and virtual training no longer feature in ACSM’s top 20, but digital PT services remains popular. And the market is predicted to grow long-term so could be one to watch (and take advantage of) over the next few years.

You might also like… How to start an online fitness training business or strategies for selling online coaching.

Data-driven training technology

Data-driven training technology was a new entrant into ACSM’s trend list, ranking at #18 on its inaugural appearance. It involves clients and trainers using ‘real-time data output, such as heart rate, velocity, and speed, to guide their workout experiences’. This approach to training supports more personalised training, even in group settings, which is something that Millennials particularly value. While monitoring workout data isn’t new, the increased focus and demand for it could present innovative opportunities for fitness brands.

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Trending Fitness Topics

So far we’ve covered macro fitness and exercise trends that are impacting the industry. But there are smaller trends and fads that pop up on social media and fitness websites which aren’t captured in the research data. These trending fitness topics make ideal content for health and wellness brands, whether it’s to ride their wave of popularity or debunk inaccurate info.

At the time of writing, the top trending fitness topics are…

  • 2024 fitness trends and resolutions (always popular in January!)
  • The #12-3-30 workout
  • Cozy cardio
  • Muscle Mummies (proving women can be strong and powerful)
  • AI workout plans
  • Rucking

We aim to update this section regularly as new fitness topics and gym trends emerge online. But if you have a suggestion then feel free to get in touch and let us know!

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You might also like… our articles on Yoga Industry Insights, Growth Areas & Trends. and Nutrition Market Trends & Growth Segments.

ACSM & Mindbody Insights

Two of the most credible trend reports in the fitness industry come from the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) and Mindbody. We’ve referenced their fantastic research several times already, but it’s worth outlining their findings so you have a comprehensive picture of the top trends.

According to the ACSM, the top 10 fitness trends for 2024 are…

  1. Wearable technology ↔
  2. Worksite health promotion ↑
  3. Fitness programs for older adults ↑
  4. Exercise for weight loss ↑
  5. Reimbursement for qualified exercise professionals ↑
  6. Employing certified exercise pros ↑
  7. Mobile exercise apps ↑
  8. Exercise for mental health (new)
  9. Youth athletic development (new)
  10. Personal training ↔

The arrows indicate whether the trend is up or down from last year so you have an idea of which direction they’re moving in.

You can read the ACSM’s full 2024 trend survey results here.

Mindbody has produced a 2024 predictions report which takes a more qualitative approach. They interview a number of fitness industry leaders then collate their views (and supported by data) into themes for the year. According to the latest Mindbody report, the top fitness and wellness trends for 2024 are…

  1. Train Strong, Live Long – Strength training will be the key to longevity.
  2. Get the Party Started – Beauty and wellness community events will become increasingly popular.
  3. Beauty Under a Microscope – Consumers will expect science-based, performance-proven products and services.
  4. ZZZs Are the Best Medicine – The importance of sleep hygiene will continue to grow.
  5. Warming Up to Hot and Cold – Consumers will combine temperature therapies.
  6. Boomers Go Boutique – Older adults will head to fitness studios in greater numbers.

You can read the Mindbody & Classpass’ 2024 Predictions Report here.

Fitness Market Tile

2024 Fitness Industry Report

This is the most comprehensive and up-to-date health and fitness industry research report available. Unlike others, you get extended access to the 2024 edition, including any updates that are made as new market data becomes available. Ideal for business planning, the 90-page report includes…

  • Health & fitness industry revenue & growth by market segment
  • Gym market size, growth & membership statistics
  • Online & virtual fitness market developments
  • Financial information for the largest club operators globally
  • Biggest & fastest growing fitness franchises
  • Insights into the boutique fitness studio & personal training segments
  • Latest industry trends & how to capitalise on them
  • Growth markets, segments & audiences including Millennials
  • Data on fitness tracker, app & equipment segments
  • Outlook & evidence-based predictions for the future of the industry
  • 14-day money-back guarantee, no questions or hassle.
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What do you think about these trends – are any of them surprising? Or is there anything you think is missing? Let us know your thoughts on social media or via our contact form…

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Caroline @ Wellness Creative Co

Qualified personal trainer (BSc Sports Science) & nutritionist (MSc Human Nutrition) with 15+ years of fitness & wellness marketing experience working with global brands.