The days of filling a room full of weight stack multi stations with fixed paths of movement (remember the bar stool bench), arecoming to an end in high schools fitness programs across the country. Old gear is not being replaced with the same 1980 style commercial fitness equipment. Not only does this style of equipment require a lot of money in a time where budgets are tight, they cater to only a few students at a time.Budgets are not there, but there is good news because the landscape of fitness training is changing.
Here are some of the high school fitness trends as a result that STAK Fitnessare seeing across the country:
1- Bodyweight adn functional training
Great news from the fitness industry, more and more bodyweight training, functional training, movement based training is more mainstream. This opens the door to the same for physical education programs. These programs are cyclical and the cycle is back to this being a top trend in fitness.
2- Training like athletes do
Using tools to work on motor skills, balance, mobility and strength as well as endurance are the way athletes are training today. This is a great backbone to any curriculum for all students. It requires some space and a strategy that has equipment and programming to support it. Having tools like resistance bands, kettlebells, medicine balls, gym balls, dumbbells, suspension trainers, recovery tools and olympic lifting stationsopen the door for progress to be made, and lifelong skills learned. In schools with the space and budget, decisions on having indoor turf and sport conditioning areas are now showing up as well.
3- Metric based training
Heart rate training and understanding how the body reacts to the demands of physical activity can be integrated into curriculum. Having heart rate monitors and simple equipment like spin bikes allows for many students to learn while being active. The research on academic performance improving with regular physical activity is ever present (I learned about that in the 80’s while getting my B.Ed.).
4- Cardio equipment being used indifferent ways
For those with budget and the where with all, treadmills, ellipticals and bikes are still popular, but, they are being used different ways than in the past. In combination with trend #3 above, interval training for example is very popular. Equipment now is used as a training tool that has students rotating as part of circuit, rather than just through traditional steady state exercise. Another example is competitions and working collaboratively. Having performance goals and targets and creating teams around certain equipment is also a popular program. (for more information on team cardio programs see info bottom of the blog).
5- Equipment paying for itself
What a concept! Equipment now has with it fundraising features to offset costs and benefit great causes. Whether than be raising money for an equipment budget, or another worthy cause, this is now possible and very relevant.
For more information on any of the programs discussed, from team cardio, fundraising, athletic training to custom space design for your school, please connect via STAK Fitness or by email. Almost all our STAK equipment comes with implementation and education plans. We look forward to connecting when the time is right for you and provide a free consult.
Greg Lawlor is a former PE school teacher who now is Chief Customer Officer with STAK Fitness, a national equipment and education organization. STAK Fitness has regional representatives across the country that can assist and support any changes to your fitness programming along with the equipment. Since 2010, STAK has worked with over 3000 such organizations in helping them reach and impact more people.
Tags: commercial fitness equipment, treadmills, ellipticals, bikes, cycles, functional fitness, team cardio, bodyweight training, Greg Lawlor, STAK Fitness, medicine balls, resistance bands, dumbbells, kettlebells, olympic lifting, team cardio, steady state fitness, high school fitness, physical education, indoor turf, sport conditioning.