15 health and wellness trends

What do the next 12 months hold for your physique?

Aerial hoop
Currently available at just one studio in Dubai – the all-new Café De La Danse – aerial hoop is a theatrically inspired workout that involves getting into different poses on a large metal ring suspended from the ceiling. As we’ve seen many times before in this city (particularly in the case of pole fit) new classes like this become contagious among Dubai’s dance community, and we’re not expecting AH to buck the trend.

Body weight training
Forget dumbells and kettlebells, experts around the world are predicting that 2015’s biggest trend is set to be body weight workouts – that means no equipment, and more primal movements. Think lunges, squats, push-ups and (groan) burpees – could the conventional gym start looking very different?


While yoga is by no means a gender-specific pursuit, men are catching on more and more to the appeal of the stretch-based workout as a means to recover from sports-related injury. Dubai’s studios have a heavy leaning towards female yogis at the moment, so we’re sincerely hoping that 2015 sees a shift towards more male-centric classes and making men feel
more welcome.

Gravity-defying derrieres
Big behinds are the body part du jour, thanks to Kim Kardashian and the rise of the ‘belfie’. As such, we predict the launch of classes, workouts and non-surgical sculpting sessions promising to lift, smooth, plump and pad out your posterior.

Healthy eating goes mainstream

While Dubai has seen a smattering of low-key health-conscious restaurants and food concepts launch in 2014, 2015 could well be the year when good nutrition goes citywide. Around the world, people are making a shift towards calorie, sugar and bad fat-savvy choices when it comes to convenience foods. And where the consumer goes, can McDonalds et al follow?

High Intensity Interval Training was a fitness buzzword of 2014, but given the fact HIIT works for pretty much all body types, it’s set to remain a strong force on the scene in 2015, with ever more variations on the stop-start workout formula to hit gyms around the world.

Hot barre
You’ve sweated through 90 hellish minutes with hot yoga this year, well 2015 could be your chance to get to grips with hot barre. Currently sweeping gyms in New York, this new class sees participants perform classical ballet moves in rooms heated to 40°C. As with hot yoga, the claims are that the class delivers a deeper stretch and helps with detox. Wait until May and save yourself some cash by pirouetting on your driveway.

Like the man bun, some things are so obviously terrible ideas you can’t help wondering why we all embraced them with such enthusiasm. And so it is that extreme juicing, crash diets and residential bootcamp detoxes look set to go out in 2015, and be replaced with (finally) a move towards moderation and simple, easy, sustainable steps towards a healthy lifestyle.


Better appetite regulation, increased productivity, lower blood pressure and decreased stress levels – the benefits of getting the right amount of sleep simply cannot be understated. In a city of hard-working night owls, could napping pods become a reality? Forward-thinking multinationals such as Google set an example in their offices that many started following in 2014. Could Dubai’s corporations be next?

Online fitness
As our love of the digital world and staying healthy collide, some circles expect the number of people taking part in online fitness challenges and streaming video tutorials to soar in 2015. With free time still at a premium and the option to share your results through social media where you can brag freely about your new ‘personal best’, we can see this being a big one for Dubai.

Raw products
It’s not just about the food, but what you’re putting on your skin, too. While Dubai has slowly woken up to the raw food trend this year, with restaurants and online delivery now specialising in the arena, the raw skincare products that have swept other major capitals over the past year are now seeping into the city. Check out Bee Yummy Skin Food, supposedly a favourite of Georgia Jagger.

It’s our favourite part of the gym routine – rest day – and it’s about to go big in 2015. Expect to see your trainers and gym buddies putting more emphasis on recovery, with foam rollers, therapy balls and dynamic stretching all set to be just as important as the actual workouts to your body routine.

If 2014 was the year of the Fitbit, 2015 could be the year of Xbox One’s Band, a wearable fitness tracker that syncs you up with your console’s health and fitness apps. It’s set to be part of a range of products from Microsoft, including heart rate monitors, scales and video sensors to help users keep track of their health in real time.

Treadmill classes

One of the latest fitness fads to send New Yorkers into a lycra-clad frenzy, treadmill workouts could be on their way to Dubai in the next 12 months. Trendsetting New York treadmill studio The Mile High Run Club launched in November, and looks set to spawn a raft of imitators in its own neighbourhood. Nowhere likes a franchise more than Dubai, so the odds of taking on a treadmill bootcamp soon are looking good.

Wacky races

Joining the ranks of the Color Run, this year Dubai welcomed its first Glow Run (complete with rave sticks) and Contagion Run (zombies versus humans). An overwhelmingly positive response suggests we’re likely to see more quirky fitness challenges introduced next year – though whether it’ll be a wife-carrying championship, a shopping trolley race or an indoor marathon remains to be seen.

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