2016 Exercise Trends: This Is How You’ll Burn Calories This Year

2016 Exercise Trends: This Is How You’ll Burn Calories This Year

by MyFitnessPal
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2016 Exercise Trends: This Is How You’ll Burn Calories This Year

It’s that time again! January is the time for many of us to buckle down and focus on fitness.

It’s also time again for the data gurus at MyFitnessPal to take a look at what exercises were logged over the last year by our 100 million users. We also sat down with our fitness and nutrition experts to predict what 2016’s hottest food and fitness trends will be.

We took the total number of minutes logged for each of these activities and divided it by the number of active users on the app over the period of January to November of 2014 and compared it to the same data collected from January to November of 2015. We did have a growth in our database over that time, so we corrected for the number of daily active users.

Exercise 2014–2015 % change
CrossFit -4%
Spin and indoor cycling-19%
HIIT +14%
SoulCycle +32%
Orange Theory +170%
Yoga -13%

Here are what MyFitnessPal’s coaching experts and Registered Dietitians have deemed the workouts to watch in 2015:

  1. We’ll do less dancing. Zumba continues to drop as people seek new ways to sweat off the calories.
  2. Studio class participation is soaring. People are excited to get out of their self-directed routine and into a class with other people. We may be going to fewer Spin classes, but branded workouts like SoulCycle and Orange Theory are growing fast.
  3. We’re over the Om. Yoga may have great benefits beyond just stretching, including reducing stress and increasing flexibility. But it’s losing popularity, dropping by 13% in the past year.
  4. HIIT is still a hit. High Intensity Interval Training, or HIIT (also known as Tabata), is a popular way to burn calories and get into shape. These workouts continue on a steady rise, and we’ll likely see that trend continue in the new year.
  5. We’re stepping up the step tracking. People are tracking their steps as a way to increase daily activity. We saw step entries triple, meaning people are keeping better track of their steps. And people are stepping more. Steps per active user have increased by 8% in the last year.

What Will We See in 2016?

Our Coaching Lead, Glennis Coursey, has some workouts to watch in the new year:

  • As we see wearables become more popular and widespread, we’ll continue to see the step trend go up. Watching steps helps people see how small things—like parking the car at the back of the lot or taking a 10-minute walk during lunch—actually have big impact over time.
  • We’ll continue to see innovative new exercise classes popping up in 2016. For many people, it’s much easier to get motivated to go to a fun workout class than do a self-guided workout in a gym. When you bring friends, family members and coworkers to a group class, you add an extra layer of accountability and fun.
  • We’ll see more and more people squeezing in workouts at home with apps like SworkIt, Yoga Studio App and Body By Kayla. Sometimes, it’s just too tricky to fit in a class or gym workout when you’re crunched on time, your kids need a bath and you have projects due at work. Being able to grab your iPad and squeeze in a quick workout at home is a great go-to when things get busy.

About the Author


MyFitnessPal provides powerful tools that make it easier for anyone to live a healthier life by tracking their meals and physical activity. Make healthy choices and visit the MyFitnessPal blog and download MyFitnessPal (if you haven’t already).


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