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The San Diego-based American Council on Exercise (ACE), which successfully predicted the increased popularity of on-line coaching and personal training, is looking into its crystal ball once again for 2001. Here are some of its predictions for the year ahead:
• Because people spend so much time working indoors, outdoor fitness programs will become more popular. Group fitness instructors will work with people in setting such as parks and beaches.
• Personal trainers will focus more on the whole person, coaching their clients on overall wellness and stress reduction.
• Fitness programs targeted toward children will grow due to the impact of health status reports on the nation’s youth.
• Corporations, faced with a competitive employee market, high turnover, and increased demand from their employees for more balanced lifestyles, will provide a broader menu of health and fitness solutions. This will include corporate fitness centers, on-site personal trainers, Internet coaching, golf, and sports-specific training.
• Fitness devices, such as personal digital assistants (PDAs) and heart rate monitors, will talk, motivate, and coach based on a person’s goals. For the traveler, cell phones and PDAs will track workout schedules, providing reminders and giving feedback on workouts while on the road. On-line personal training and cyber diets will continue to capture the interest of exercisers who are constantly on the go.
• Pilates, yoga, and other mind/body classes will continue to be hot and will become more mainstream.
• There will be continued diversification in group exercise, including classes based on the styles of dance and music from other cultures, especially Eastern ones.
• Exercise programs geared toward older adults will grow, focused particularly on low-impact aerobics, fitness walking, and water exercise.
• ACE, 5820 Oberlin Drive, Suite 102, San Diego, CA 92121-3787. Telephone: (858) 535-8227. Fax: (858) 535-1778. Web site: www.acefitness.org.