HIIT, cupping and waist training: Are these fitness trends safe?

From high-intensity interval training to waist training, we're checking on the health effects of popular fitness trends.

High intensity interval training, cupping and waist training are just some of the new fitness trends popping up, but are they safe?

Cameron Cox checked in with Matthew Anderson, a family medicine doctor at HonorHealth to find out. Here's what he had to say about each trend:

HIIT training

HIIT, or high-intensity interval training, consists of working out in high-intensity spurts, then slowing down for shorter intervals.

Loading ...

"Basically what it is, is alternating bursts of a lot of exercise and very vigorous with periods of rest or lighter exercise," said Anderson. 

But does it work? 

Anderson said changing the intensity of your workout can actually burn more calories. 

"it's kind of like revving your engines, putting it into high gear for a period of time so you're really having to burn your calories," he said. 


This got a lot of people talking when Michael Phelps showed off perfectly circular bruises during the Olympics. 

Cupping stems from an ancient Asian technique of sucking skin into cups using either a vacuum or heat. 

Doing so increases blood flow to the affected area. 

Does it work?

"There's never been a whole lot of medical studies that show a significant benefit," said Anderson. 

However, this is also a very low-risk procedure. 

Waist training

Waist training, or wearing a corset or shape gear around your abdomen, started gaining in popularity over the last few years after celebrities like Kim Kardashian and Jessica Alba talked about using it. 

However, Anderson warns not to use it while working out. 

"[It] limits your ability to be physically active, limits aerobic capacity. It can potentially put you at risk for passing out, so I would definitely recommend against using any type of girdle, corset or any restrictive trainer during exercise," he said.