IMMERSIVE HOME WORKOUTS

They say variety is the spice of life, and this definitely holds true when it comes to keeping fit. Trying out new ways to exercise is often key to avoiding boredom or hitting a fitness plateau, so you’ll be pleased to know there’s a whole host of exciting new workouts and other developments coming your way this year. According to the American College of Sports Medicine’s (ACSM) annual industry survey, wearable technology will be the number one trend in 2019 as the devices get ever more accurate and affordable. And, while HIIT will still be a huge… er, hit, our thirst for fast and furious workouts will be balanced out by a continuing shift towards more mindful, low-impact, holistic approaches to fitness as ‘wellness’ and ‘recovery’ become the top buzzwords. Want to know what else will be new? Read on to discover our top 10 predictions for the year ahead.

IMMERSIVE HOME WORKOUTS

The era of the fitness DVD could soon be over, as technology allows us to turn our homes into boutique gyms. Using the latest advances in virtual reality, artificial intelligence, data science and wearable tech, more brands such as ClassPass Live (classpass.com), Barrecore (barrecore. co.uk), and FİİT TV (which can also track and display your performance via a chest strap; titt.tv), are streaming ‘on demand’ and real-time classes 24/7, bringing the personalisation, immersion and interaction of live studio workouts into the comfort and convenience of your home – a big attraction tor anyone leading a busy life.

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‘Virtual classes give subscribers the flexibility to start a workout whenever suits their schedule as there are no set start or finish times,’ says Marvin Burton, head of product at 24-hour gym chain, Anytime Fitness (anytimefitness.co.uk). It’s this flexibility, combined with access to some of the world’s top fitness instructors, that’s seeing the digital fitness market growing 10 times taster than the traditional gym market. Of course, there are still some sticking points, the two biggest being lack

of space in the home and the high prices of equipment and subscription services, according to a survey from American user insight platform Alpha. One example is Peloton (onepeloton.co.uk), the homeworkout choice of many a US celeb, and fresh to the UK. The static bike you need in order to take part in live, immersive Spin classes will set you back £1,995 (then there’s the monthly £39.50 subscription fee), and it’s a big piece of equipment to find space for in your home.

But prices will drop as developments in technology are made, and space-saving solutions are on the way from the latest US fitness sensation, MIRROR (mirror.co) – a flat, interactive surface with an embedded camera and microphone that fixes to your wall and lets users see themselves, the instructor and other participants during a range of classes. It’s not yet available in the UK so, until then, look out tor more affordable options, such as Lucy Mecklenburgh’s Results with Lucy (resultswithlucy.com), with contractless membership to workouts on your laptop, phone, tablet or TV starting at £7.99. tar.

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