THE BLOG
03/17/2014 04:20 pm ET Updated May 14, 2014

Trends in Fitness: 2014 IHRSA Show Review

The International Health Racquet Sports Association, know as IHRSA, hosted it's annual international convention at the San Diego Convention Center this past weekend. The latest offerings for fitness studios and gyms are showcased at this event competing for the attention of club owners to implement as the keys to success for their businesses. Classes, keynotes and information to help increase club revenue, grow business and streamline the fitness business is offered. The likes of Gary Vanderchuk and Seth Godin offer real insights to building any business in the technology, viral age.

You'll find the latest strength-training equipment and technologies including the first treadmill ever without a belt-driven driver. "Sproing" is an air bed tread surface that straps a belt around your waist to allow the body lean forward as it does in the natural outdoor running world while moving on a cushioned surface. "It puts the body in correct alignment during the leap phase of running," says Ingrid Kromer, director of programming for the company. But, whether companies will replace all their treadmills that people are familiar with is difficult to say. Paul Toback, founder of Sproing mentioned that it took months before the elliptical or AMT by Precor to take hold on the cardio floor. People take time to adapt to new theories even when they are technically better for the body.

Group programing keeps members at the gyms. Programs like "Piloxing," "Power Music's War," "XerciseLab" and "Fitness on Request" are some of the latest group fitness programs to motivate the masses. Other new ideas include Pavigym's lighted floors to Life Fitness Synergy outdoor playground make fitness space look more like recess. The key is to promote fun while getting fit.

More studios are featuring ways to make your cardio experience personal and fun too. Paofit offers an application to download to your iPad so you can see the real images of up to 10 different fabulous runs with an avatar of other people participating on the same route from any where in the world. A simple concept similar to iFit Live's google map application, this program changes terrain and moves you through the virtual landscape based on your pace and cadence. Although the product works with almost any treadmill, LifeFitness treadmills have a unique blue tooth component that assist the experience without any cords or cables.

All in all, the show is over thousands of square feet of demonstration space, lectures, workshops, and morning workouts start as early as 6:30 a.m. But, old fashioned workouts like stair climbing still take the attention of these fitness fanatics who take on the 200 steps leading up to the convention center's rooftop overlooking the bay. With headsets or a training buddy, the simplest forms of exercise can still be enjoyable.

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