Circuit training was first created in the 1950s. It initiated a distinct mode of training that delivered both strength and cardiovascular benefits, while proving to be time-efficient and engaging. Circuit training is proven to be an effective methodology to improve physical fitness and overall health. It is an accessible training method, inclusive of a wide variety of age groups and fitness abilities. The FitLot Training System utilizes circuit training style fitness programs in outdoor fitness parks in order to best serve the general public in a simple, safe and effective manner.
“Elements of circuit-style training programs were present early on in history. The modern form of circuit training was developed by R.E. Morgan and G.T. Anderson in 1953 at the University of Leeds in England (8). It was initially examined as a 9 to 12 exercise protocol where participants performed exercises at a moderate intensity (about 40% to 60% of 1 Rep Max values) for a specified number of repetitions or amount of time. Once the repetitions were performed or time expired, the participant would move to the next exercise station with very little rest. Improvements in muscle strength and endurance were observed, as well as components of aerobic fitness (8). The efficiency of this type of training grew in popularity and expanded because of advances in equipment by the United States (selectorized and hydraulic equipment)” (Klika et al. 2013).
What does the science say about circuit training?
- Circuit training can elicit adaptations in the cardiovascular system and decrease fat mass in the elderly population (Romero-Arenas et al. 2013).
- Circuit training was associated with a greater metabolic disturbance and cost during the early phases of Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption (EPOC) in untrained women (Braun et al. 2005).
- “Circuit weight training is a great strategy to improve the body composition, muscle strength and cardiovascular functions and, consequently, to maintain functional capacity during aging” (Romero-Arenas et al. 2013).
- Combining circuit weight training and high intensity interval training is effective for achieving significant caloric expenditure and metabolic and cardiorespiratory response (Nunez et al. 2020).
- Integrating cardio interval stations into circuit weight training routines may enhance fitness benefits and maximize time-efficiency more so than traditional circuit training methods (Skidmore et al. 2012).
- An exercise circuit including functional training exercises can be beneficial for an elderly person wishing to improve physical functioning and mobility (Whitehurst et al. 2005).
- A lower-intensity circuit comprised of just strength exercises can elicit a good cardiovascular response (Gotshalk et al. 2004).
- Circuit training improves the physical fitness qualities of speed, agility, and explosive power, and serves as an effective training strategy for participants (Gopinathan, 2019).