Fun Fitness Flashback: 80s Aerobics

By , SparkPeople Blogger
(Disclaimer: As I write this, it's 4:55 p.m. and I need a blog post for tomorrow. While I guarantee this post will entertain and delight you, don't expect anything too deep.)

When you think of aerobics, what comes to mind? Tights, thong leotards, spandex and sweatbands? Well, you're not alone. Aerobics hit the mainstream in the 80s, and the "fashion" that went along with it (think: Olivia Newton John's "Get Physical" video) was probably just as famous as the signature moves, which could best be described as a cross of dance, calisthenics, and athletic training that is choreographed and set to music.

I recently stumbled upon a set of YouTube videos from the 1987 "National Aerobics Championship" where groups of, um…aerobicisers (?) competed for the title "America's Best Aerobic Athlete." These routines are mesmerizing.

If you're ready for a fun fitness flashback, you'll love the videos embedded below!

Update: The original video I posted here has been removed from YouTube by its owner, but I did find another version of the video where someone dubbed some newer hip hop music into the soundtrack instead of the original sound. You can see it by clicking here.

And here's an example of one of the routines:

We've come a long way, baby! The hair, the music, the moves—this is 80s aerobics at its best. I wish I would have seen these workouts when I was developing ideas for my own "80s Aerobics" workout (on the Cardio Blast DVD), but I don't think I could hold a candle to these guys! If your workout routines resemble these videos in any way, it's time for a fitness intervention!

On a serious note, despite looking a bit corny, these routines are tough. It would NOT be easy to replicate a workout like this and keep up with it! They are fast-paced and anyone who actually followed a routine like that would have to get some great results. But I'm glad that fitness has changed so much since 1986. I can't imagine fitting in as a fitness instructor if I had to wear that much spandex and teach people to exercise like this. It would not come very naturally for me.

So I have to ask: Did you ever try aerobics during the 80s craze? Do you love it or hate it?