It’s finally the end of the work day and you’ve successfully battled rush-hour traffic to reach the gym. Amidst the clanging weights, hum of fluorescent lights and gentle plodding of feet hitting the treadmill, you heave a heavy sigh. Some days you don’t have the energy or the motivation to work out. Look towards the thumping music and whoops of laughter coming from a group exercise class. Here’s what makes group fitness so appealing.
You’re more likely to continue with the gym
Folks who work out solo are 56% more likely to give up their gym memberships, as compared to folks who attend group classes, says International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association, in its Membership Retention Report in 2014. This is in large part due to the social interaction and community that’s built through a common interest. Our lives are busier than ever, and fitting in exercise on top of work, family duties and socialising is tough. By marrying your social schedule with exercise, you’re more likely to stay engaged at the gym. An American College of Sports Medicine article talks of boredom as being one of the most common reasons people quit. You’re less likely to, when you’re engaged, not just with the workout, but also with the group.
You get a full-body workout
Many gym-goers don’t know how to design a well-balanced, safe set of exercises. They tend to pick and choose the exercises they like the most, rather than the most effective ones that produce results. An experienced fitness instructor will design a full-body programme that ensures every single muscle is worked out. More importantly, an instructor can give you immediate feedback on your form, ensuring minimum risk of injury.
You can be any fitness level to join
Working out solo can be uninspiring, especially if you’re new to the world of fitness. Group classes are a fun and engaging way to start your fitness journey. No matter what level you are, beginner or advanced, there is something fun for everyone.
You’re more likely to give it your all
No one wants to be seen as the weakest link. When it comes to group exercise, working out beside someone you perceive to be more fit can help you step up your game and lead to performance gains. Whether it be a fitness challenge or a regular group class, working out with others motivates you to work harder then you would on your own.
So next time you think about throwing in the towel, give group fitness a shot. You may be surprised!
Jen Thomas is a Chennai-based REPs certified Personal Trainer & Fitness Instructor from the Premier Training International school in London, UK