Boot camps in the traditional sense have been around since 1888 when inmates at the Elmira Reformatory in Elmira, New York were subjected to a series of training exercises designed to promote discipline and productive activity. It wasn’t until 1898, in preparation for the Spanish American War, that the military adapted these exercises and we got (more or less) what we know today as bootcamp.
The training exercises evolved over time to include targeted activities that increased flexibility, stamina and strength, and the camaraderie that blossomed from the military boot camps created a bond that other exercise programs couldn’t match. The reasoning was that, in a crisis situation you need to depend on your buddy to get you through it, and these military bootcamps provided incentives for its servicemen to achieve. It was that sense of achievement that formed the basis for such a great workout.
In the recent past the concept of bootcamp has been tweaked – Toronto fitness instructors, realizing that their customers are looking for something more sweat-inducing, decided to create fitness bootcamps for their clients, and it wasn’t long before the concept took off, with eager exercisers looking for a bootcamp in Toronto to sweat off the pounds. Toronto fitness instructors knew that their clients needed incentives to perform the exercises, and what better place to look than the military-style bootcamp.
You can probably track bootcamp’s popularity to the health craze in the 1980s and 1990s, which valued high-energy, cardio workouts with built-in motivation, and it was around this time too (well, earlier in fact) that a slew of scientific studies came out confirming that cardio workouts had great health benefits. The problem was that, after people’s first initial enthusiasm about working out wore off, many people dropped out – a lot of reasons were cited for this drop off in attendance, but the most prevalent was the fact that most people had no time or didn’t want to spend extra money on a boot camp they weren’t going to attend.
This fact stimulated some discussion, and the concept of a pay-as-you-go gym was bandied about as studies confirmed that some people are more likely to visit the gym if they aren’t committed to a gym membership. The pay-as-you-go gym concept first attracted people that were money-conscious but wanted to work out, and it caught on when others realized that you didn’t have to pay for the complete package – instead you could choose the bootcamp that fitted your needs. Pay-as-you-go gyms work well with bootcamps because these types of programs and exercises are made to fit individual needs, and, at pay-as-you-go gyms, you can ensure that your boot camp is run by a quality instructor.
Your bootcamp needs to be led by a quality instructor that understands the results you want to achieve. The fact that bootcamps provide an intense work out that is geared towards physical goals is an important component to consider (because, let’s face it, boot camps are not for everyone), but if your bootcamp is be led by a quality instructor that is versed in diplomacy and motivational training, you’ll have no problem tapping into the benefits of this awesome workout.