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Industry Leaders Provide Fitness Predictions for Canadians in 2014

LONDON, ON, Dec. 16, 2013 /CNW/ - North American thought-leaders in the areas of fitness, health and wellness have weighed in with their predictions on what 2014 holds for the fitness industry and the wellbeing of Canadians.

The group includes 11 experts in the fields of yoga, group exercise, footwear and apparel, personal training, health promotion and education, childhood physical activity and obesity, older adult health and fitness, and the healthcare sector.

When asked, "What do you think the biggest trend(s) in health, fitness and wellness will be in 2014?" our experts answered, focusing on the common goal of providing insight into how Canadians can live their healthiest and best lives in 2014. Here are their predictions:

Jillian Michaels- personal trainer, bestselling author, daytime Emmy-nominated television personality, National Exercise & Sports Trainers Association (NESTA) and the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America (AFAA), Kettlebell Concepts certified, AFPA nutrition and wellness consultant certificate.

  • Workouts that Increase your metabolism: Based on current research that suggests high intensity interval training is the best way to achieve training improvements and body change results, metabolic training will continue to top of the list of trends for 2014. Programs that challenge the body to incur a higher metabolic cost (calorie burn) during and post-workout (after burn) by using a variety of total body training methodologies will prove to be winners when it comes to game changing workouts—For instance, body weight training and resistance training along with intervals and circuits in the same workout, like the structure of my BODYSHRED class.

Healthcare Sector: Robert S. Bell- MDCM, MSc, FACS, FRCSC, President and CEO, University Health Network

  • Exercise to improve health: Canadians are increasingly interested in how they can improve their own health. We recognize that appropriate exercise can reduce our risks of developing several chronic diseases including diabetes, cancer, high blood pressure and heart disease. The Peter Munk Cardiac Centre at University Health Network is happy to support this trend by working with GoodLife to develop "heart healthy" exercises for Canadians suffering from mild to moderate heart disease. Cardiac rehabilitation through exercise is one of the most important treatments for heart conditions and we are very excited by this collaboration that will bring heart rehab to many more Canadians. Read More:

Health, Fitness and Wellness Industry: David "Patch" Patchell-Evans- GoodLife Fitness founder and CEO

  • Simple, effective routines, personal club experience: The industry is becoming polarized into people doing really aggressive fitness routines and people doing very little or no exercise. I predict one of the biggest fitness trends in 2014 will be simplification of workouts based on using more machines. There needs to be simple routines that are safe, effective and time-sensitive for the vast majority of people who are working out very little or not at all. For club owners, the greatest investment opportunity in 2014 will be investing in your people. If you care for your staff they will then care for members. There will also be a resurgence of the middle market clubs. People will avoid very large and busy budget-model clubs in favor of smaller 20,000 sq. ft. clubs that feel more comfortable.

Group Exercise: Maureen Hagan- Award-Winning Group Exercise Instructor, Physiotherapist and Physical Health Educator, GoodLife Fitness Vice President of Operations, Group Exercise, ACE and canfitpro certified

  • Diverse, time-sensitive workouts: Along with very popular HIIT (high-intensity interval training) workouts, Functional fitness, using body weight and small equipment (ie-balls, tubing, dumbbells, plates, straps/slings, bars, foam rollers, balance equipment) will continue to grow as people are looking for ways to be fit for life's everyday activities.  Express Classes and workouts are also an important trend for 2014 to support busy lifestyles and the diverse needs consumers have. Short duration group exercise classes and workouts will continue to attract participation and attendance. This is proven by the 30 minute class concepts like Jillian Michaels BODYSHRED, CXWORX and Les Mills' popular 30 minutes back-to-back class concepts.

Older Adult Health, Wellness and Fitness: Colin Milner- CEO of International Council on Active Aging, 2010 canfitpro Lifetime Achievement Award Winner

  • Stay fit for better quality of life: By 2017, 50 percent of people who walk into a health club will be over the age of 50, with that number being significantly higher if you remove children under 12, many of whom cannot be health club members. Given these facts, we will see a trend toward fitness to be able to function, rather than the popular 'functional fitness'. Programs like chair-aerobic classes, stretching classes or strength classes to help people get off of the ground are going to grow as our population ages. Over the age of 80, 46 percent of people cannot lift 10 lbs. There is a necessity to help people be stronger longer as people need to be driven by quality of life not just longevity.

Personal Training: Michele Colwell- GoodLife Fitness Vice President of Operations, Honours BSc in Human Kinetics, canfitpro PTS

  • Specialized personal training: Personal trainers are continuing to seek out specific education and training to help them meet individual client needs. For example, there is an increased need for continuing education with a focus on demographic specific training, especially for older adults, as well as programs focused on rehabilitation, chronic disease or sport-centric exercises like Olympic lifting. Along with these certifications, fitness professionals are also realizing the value of acquiring nutrition education to offer a holistic approach that looks at both diet and exercise.

Fitness Footwear and Apparel: Michael Rossi- Vice President, Reebok Brand- Canada

  • Fitness wear with function AND form: We see three key drivers in fitness footwear and apparel for 2014: Functional Movement, Versatility, and Graphic Expression. Many fitness disciplines are focusing on training for functional, every day movement, and what you wear needs to mirror how your body moves. Reebok's BareMove apparel uses strategically placed seams and lightweight stretch fabrics to ensure your clothing doesn't hold you back. We also see fitness enthusiasts participating in a wider variety of activities than ever - they want versatile products like our Reebok One Trainer, a shoe that performs equally well in a high intensity training session, a quick run, or a Les Mills workout. And finally, consumers want colour pops and expressive designs - people have enough black or white training tops! Our One Series apparel brings bold graphics & colors into play, letting people stand out while they work out. Visit to see Reebok's latest fitness gear.

Yoga: Beth Shaw- President and founder of YogaFit©, Inc. the largest Yoga School in the world

  • Therapeutic yoga: Many health, wellness and fitness experts are turning to yoga for its therapeutic benefits -- both mentally and physically.  I receive many requests from chiropractors, physiotherapists, and workplace wellness experts looking for programming to help rehabilitate injured people. One example of this has been the growth of our YogaFit for Warriors Program which we started in 2013, in Canada and the US.  The program is aimed at helping first responders, military men and women, or anyone dealing with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder or other traumatic stress conditions, alleviate the physical and mental symptoms.

Nutrition: Kirsten Schell- Registered Holistic Nutritionist, Precision Nutrition Coach, GoodLife Fitness Personal Training Project Manager, canfitpro Fitness Instructor Specialist (FIS) and Personal Training Specialist (PTS) 

  • Personalize your nutrition: Individualized programming is becoming increasingly important when it comes to nutrition and supplementation. The notion that one size fits all does not hold true when it comes to nutrition. There is an increased need for private consultation and a holistic approach that includes exercise and nutrition in order to address an individual's specific needs. We are also seeing a movement towards organic and whole foods and grocery stores are realizing the demand for these products and are increasing their accessibility to customers.

Fitness Education and Promotion: Rod Macdonald- B. Ed., Kinesiology and Physical Education, Vice President, canfitpro, the largest provider of education in the Canadian fitness industry, author

  • High intensity and obstacle course workouts: The biggest health and wellness trend for 2014 will be high intensity workouts or HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training). This training emphasizes short bursts of all-out effort followed by little or no rest. Another growing trend is the popularity of obstacle course races or mud runs like the Tough Mudder, Spartan Races, Warrior Dash, and others. These races have seen an explosion of popularity due to their accessibility as well as their focus on team effort in many cases.

Childhood Physical Activity: Lisa Burrows- Executive Director, GoodLife Kids Foundation

  • Support for active kids programs: To date GoodLife Kids Foundation Grant Program has given $1.2 MILLION to more than 100 organizations, impacting over 200,000 Canadian children. We are seeing more elementary schools apply for grants to create programs with a greater variety of activities and help children achieve the recommended 60 minutes of daily physical activity. For example, we're seeing programs, like the Circus Arts Program at Henry Kelsey School in Saskatchewan or the program at Forest Glen Elementary School in  New Brunswick which includes a Fit Friday, that provide supplementary activities to traditional physical education. The hope of these programs is that the variety will allow children to find something they truly enjoy and will continue to do. Another growing trend is a push for physical literacy to help children understand how their bodies work and how they can stay strong and healthy.

Founded in 1979, GoodLife Fitness is the largest fitness company in Canada with over 300 clubs from coast-to-coast. With over 902,000 members, GoodLife is helping to transform the health and wellness of 1 in 37 Canadians every day. With the vision of giving every Canadian the opportunity to live a fit and healthy good life, David Patchell-Evans, Founder & CEO, strives to develop innovative partnerships and collaborations in all areas of health, fitness and wellness and continues to play a significant role in the healthcare system in Canada. GoodLife has achieved Platinum Status Canada's 50 Best Managed Companies, as well as Platinum Level Canada's 10 Most Admired Corporate Cultures. and

Individual interviews are available upon request.

*Photo and B-Roll opportunities are also available.

SOURCE GoodLife Fitness

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