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Have you ever looked back at fitness videos from 50, 60, or even 70 years ago online? The fitness trends of the past might look outdated—complete with outlandish workout gear and alien machines that would be out of place today.
However, many of these vintage exercise methods are foundational for the types of fitness trends we have today, and some, like yoga and spinning, still have a place in today's world.
Everywhere you look, someone is purchasing a Peloton for their home gym, heading to a yoga class with their bestie, or sharing inspirational gym reels on their IG feed.
While these are all modern ways of exercising, many of today's tried-and-true fitness trends are built on exercise methods from the past. You might have more in common with how your grandparents exercised than you previously thought!
These five vintage fitness trends are still effective today. Here's what they have to offer.
Yoga has been used in the Eastern tradition for centuries, but it became popular in the United States in the 1960s and is still mainstream today.
Yoga combines the physical and mental aspects of wellness through stretching, fluid movements, and breathing techniques with meditation. There are many variations of yoga, and they are all great ways to improve flexibility and balance.
It's also a good way to counter stress from your day and can support better sleep. As a bonus: yoga can be done almost anywhere—in your own home with minimal equipment or at one of many studios around town where classes are taught by expert instructors.
While calisthenics may be most associated with the military, it has been around since ancient times. Calisthenics is a form of exercise that uses your own body weight as resistance.
This old-school fitness method focuses on strengthening muscles through repetitive motions (e.g., push-ups), which can help reduce body fat while developing core strength and muscle definition in the limbs.
Calisthenics is a great way to build muscle and burn calories without the need for any equipment at all. With enough dedication, you can work out at home (or anywhere you want) by using your own body weight for resistance, or using objects you have lying around your house.
For example, push-ups and pull-ups use your body's weight to create the resistance needed as you perform these movements. These both work out multiple muscle groups simultaneously, which makes your workout faster and more efficient.
Weightlifting, as we know it today, started in the late 1800s, but the act of intentionally building muscle as an athletic exercise has been around for millennia.
Whether it's the dumbbells in your local gym or a pair of free weights that you can store at home, adding weightlifting into your life is a must.
Weightlifting complements cardio exercises while encouraging the metabolism to burn more fat—even when you’re at rest.
In addition, the sheer health benefits should be enough to convince you: strengthen and tone your muscles, support bone health and movement as you age, and give you cardiovascular health benefits.
Also, many weightlifting movements are compound movements, which means you’re targeting multiple muscle groups simultaneously. This can make your workout faster and help you to avoid the gym overwhelm.
Cycling became an official sport in the late 1800s in Europe, and is where spin bikes got their start.
Spinning, the stationary version of bicycling, is great for toning leg muscles while maintaining cardiovascular health. Spin classes are popping up everywhere as a popular way to get a heart-pumping workout.
If you have access to one at home or work (or know someone who does), try getting started today.
Spinning is a great way to get your heart rate up and work on your endurance. It offers a good, whole-body workout and focuses on balance.
If you're looking for a way to stay fit without having to step outside of your home or office, spinning is an effective option!
Heavy Bag Boxing
Heavy bag boxing is a great way to get a full body workout, but it's low impact compared to regular boxing and can be done in the comfort of your own home.
For this reason, it's perfect for people with injuries or those who are otherwise unable to participate in high-impact exercise. The heavy bag allows for low impact, helping you to practice punches, kicks, and other moves without worrying about hurting yourself.
The best part about heavy bag boxing? It's fun! Just because it's effective doesn't mean it has to be boring—you'll enjoy every minute of this workout because it makes you feel like Rocky Balboa every time you punch out another round on that big ol' sack of sand.
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The bottom line is that if you’re searching for reliable workouts, try these five fitness trends that stand the test of time.
There's no need for fancy equipment or super-expensive gym memberships when all you really need are some basic moves like yoga, calisthenics, and weightlifting.
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