Wearable technology, the rise of athleisure and ‘fitfluencers’ are three of the biggest trends in fitness over the past 10 years according to fitness expert Michelle Bridges.
The 50-year-old, who is responsible for transforming the figures of half a million Australians with her 12 Week Body Transformation program, revealed the 10 fitness trends of the decade, and the four she doesn’t recommend for weight loss.
Michelle said 2010-2020 has seen a huge number of changes in the fitness industry, notably that we rely much more on the internet for how we choose to workout.
Wearable technology, the rise of athleisure and ‘fitfluencers’ are three of the biggest trends in fitness over the past 10 years according to fitness expert Michelle Bridges (pictured)
The 50-year-old (pictured), who is responsible for transforming the figures of half a million Australians with her Body Transformation program, revealed the fitness trends of the decade
1. Online health and fitness programs
Michelle said the top trend she has noticed over the past 10 years is online health and fitness programs.
‘For those without gym memberships; those who live rurally; those with time constraints; and, more recently, the whole country during COVID lockdown, online workouts have seriously changed the fitness game,’ Michelle told FEMAIL.
‘Online workouts have created a range of training environments to support each and every person, in a location that suits them best.’
Over the next decade, Michelle said she can only see online health and fitness programs continue to rise in popularity.
What are the four trends Michelle Bridges doesn’t recommend for weight loss?
Waist trainers were popular with American celebrity influencers over the past few years (pictured), but Michelle doesn’t support them
* WAIST TRAINERS: Waist trainers were popular with American celebrity influencers over the past few years, before they eventually made their way to Australian shores. Michelle Bridges said the compressive abdominal tubes supposedly targeted ‘fat loss in the ab area’, but there ‘wasn’t much scientific proof to back them up for me’.
* DETOX TEAS: Another thing the 50-year-old explained she would steer clear of is detox teas, which Michelle described as ‘essentially laxatives’. ‘It was shown the prolonged use can cause diarrhea, cramps and bowel dysfunction,’ Michelle said. Instead, the trainer said she is a big advocate for workout and eating healthily most of the time, which will make the biggest change to your body.
* STATIONARY VIBRATION PLATES: The third thing Michelle said you should steer clear of is stationary vibration plates, which promised to ‘break up cellulite, improve muscle strength and increase bone density’. ‘If you’ve ever been home watching TV between the hours of 9am and 11am you’ve probably seen the informericals selling the latest and greatest fitness machines that will magically make you fit and healthy (with the six-pack of your dreams),’ Michelle said. ‘It just doesn’t work like that folks!’ The trainer said you are far better off exercising normally, improving your nutrition and keeping an eye on energy expenditure.
* JUICE CLEANSES: Finally, Michelle said you should steer clear of any juice cleanses or anything that uses the word ‘cleanse’. ‘The unrealistic and potentially dangerous notion that drinking only juice for days on end would clear out all the bad stuff [is nonsense],’ she said. Michelle added that the human body doesn’t need help ridding itself of toxins, as we ‘have liver and kidney for that’.
Athleisure (pictured) – or the trend for wearing stylish gym gear outsid a workout – has skyrocketed in popularity over the past decade, and never more so than during the pandemic
Athleisure – or the trend for wearing stylish gym gear outside of your workouts – has skyrocketed in popularity over the past decade, and never more so than during the coronavirus pandemic.
Sales of loungewear, leggings and casual tops soared over the past quarter, while people rushed to snap up comfortable clothes they could wear at home.
‘No longer reserved for the gym, activewear became a mainstay of every lifestyle fashion – to be worn everywhere and anywhere,’ Michelle said.
‘I don’t know who started or drove this trend, but I’d like to thank them. Comfort, ease, multi-purpose.’
Michelle said another perk of this is that you don’t always have to pack an extra outfit in your gym bag.
No list about fitness and diet trends from the past decade would be complete without the rise of smashed avocado on toast (pictured)
3. Smashed avocado on toast
No list from the past decade would be complete without the rise of smashed avocado on toast.
The ubiquitous brunch dish is now a ‘staple snack or meal for Aussies all over the country:
‘Avocado contains a rich amount of healthy fats and is the perfect accompaniment for all sorts of yummy toppings – eggs, tomatoes, mushrooms, bacon… or, how I like it, with just a sprinkle of salt and pepper, a dash of olive oil and a squeeze of fresh lemon – yum,’ Michelle said.
Wearable tech such as Garmin, Fitbit and Apple watches have seen a huge increase in popularity in recent years (pictured)
4. Wearable technology
Wearable tech such as Garmin, Fitbit and Apple watches have seen a huge increase in popularity in recent years, partly because they can now do much more than merely track your steps.
‘Over the last decade, we’ve seen wearable technology become a billion dollar industry worldwide,’ Michelle said.
‘The information made available to us through wearable technology (heart rate, calories burned, stress levels) has empowered so many people on their fitness journeys.’
CrossFit is another workout that has taken off in recent times, and the combination of gymnastics, weights and functional training is perfect for training the whole body:
‘CrossFit focuses on training the whole body, and conquering strenuous obstacles at the same time,’ Michelle said.
‘It’s high-intensity and the aim is to build proficiency and strength in the type of movements you perform in everyday life which allows our bodies to continue functioning at their best.’
Michelle said while she doesn’t mind the trend for wellness, she is against juice clesnses and detox teas (stock image)
Zumba was another workout that Michelle highlighted, as it combines exercise and dancing in one simple workout.
‘Dancing became a MAJOR form of fitness in the 2010s, and Zumba led the charge. It grew exponentially, with (mostly) women flocking to their gym to try the workout,’ Michelle said.
If there is one word in fitness that has come to dominate the past decade, it’s wellness – which encompasses everything from essential oils to meditation, infrared saunas and acupuncture.
Michelle said while they were once woo woo, they have now become mainstream – and have helped millions of people with both physical pain and stress relief.
8. Meal kits
For those who are short on time but want to stay healthy, Michelle highlighted meal kits as a great resource.
And, while they used to be centred around convenience, the 50-year-old said they are more often than not now loaded with fresh and healthy ingredients.
‘Their popularity comes down to their speed and convenience, matched with good taste and healthy ingredients,’ she said.
From the likes of fit mum Chontel Duncan to Sophie Guidolin (pictured), so-called ‘fitfluencers’ have dominated the past decade and encouraged us to work out
From the likes of fit mum Chontel Duncan to Sophie Guidolin and the ever-present Kayla Itsines, so-called ‘fitfluencers’ have dominated the past decade – and encouraged many of us to sweat and work out.
‘Previous to this last decade, I’d argue the fitness industry felt very exclusive, and you’d only see celebrities or professional athletes selling the idea of fit living,’ Michelle explained.
‘Now, in a lot of cases, it’s so much more believable to hear it from a regular person on social media, who happens to have thousands or millions of followers.’
Even better than this, their workouts are often free.
Finally, Michelle (pictured) said that thankfully, people have realised that fit is not a body type this year – and weight isn’t the only indicator of someone’s health or fitness
10. Fit is not a body type
Finally, Michelle said that thankfully, people have realised that fit is not a body type this year – and weight isn’t the only indicator of someone’s health or fitness.
‘Over the last 10 years, we really saw the body-positivity movement explode into public consciousness,’ Michelle explained.
‘ The champions of this movement- in fitness, fashion and media – made a real splash, workout hard, loud and proud, with self love and self respect.’