4 Top Benefits of Group Exercise vs Solo
Stay motivated and achieve your goals through the accountability and encouragement that comes with group exercise. Read on to learn about why in-person group exercise may in fact be more beneficial than working out solo from home.
We all know that exercising regularly is beneficial in many ways, especially on how it positively impacts our health and mood. Still, keeping a regular exercise routine is hard!
If you are trying to build an exercise habit or mix up your existing one, group exercise might be the missing link. Plus, group exercise may prove to have even more long-lasting benefits than your average at-home workout.
It’s on the calendar
Group exercise classes are often held at the same time, same day week after week. The mere fact of having exercise appear consistently on your schedule creates some accountability and may lead you to increase your exercise session frequency, thereby boosting health benefits. Many gyms and studios offer larger discounts if you buy packages or unlimited visits, which can also help you exercise more often.
After going to the same class a few times, you might also feel more comfortable and connected with the instructor and begin to chat with others in the class. They will begin to count on your presence in the class and will notice when you’re absent. This built-in accountability that comes with a class setting will subconsciously make you visit the class more often.
Sign up for a group exercise class with a friend for extra accountability, as accountability works best when it’s external. You’re a lot less likely to cancel on your friend than you would for yourself.
#2: Proper Form Instruction
It’s all in the wrist
Achieving the correct form and technique is difficult to master on your own, no matter how many YouTube videos you’ve watched. Group fitness instructors are trained professionals, and they can notice even the most subtle adjustments you might need to make improve your results. This is not only important to make the exercise more effective, exercising with good form may also prevent injuries.
Learn from others
You can also book group training sessions for more targeted instruction. Group sessions are often at a much lower cost than a private session and you can benefit from learning correct exercise form and other techniques by watching the instructor work with others.
#3: Healthy Competition
Anything you can do, I can do
Ever notice that when you’re walking or running next to someone on the treadmill, you feel compelled to go faster? That’s because when working out in pairs or in a group, you will, in fact, exercise harder. Seeing others work hard and go for that extra rep might just motivate you to do the same.
However, avoid getting trapped in a comparison loop; everyone comes in different shapes, sizes and abilities. Do your very best, and instead focus on training with proper intensity and good form, and most importantly – consistently.
#4: Social Connections
You’ve got a friend
Even if you already have an established exercise habit and regularly work out at home, there’s still one thing missing: making connections.
Humans are social by nature. Going to the gym or a group class can create the sense of belonging, even if you don’t engage with anyone in particular. Simply being together, achieving goals and working out together side by side can be enough to give you that feeling of social connection.
Like for like
What’s more, making friends with others who are already regularly working out will influence your behavior on both conscious and subconscious levels. Studies show that healthy behavior is actually contagious. By spending time with those who are living a healthy lifestyle, you will start building healthy habits and reach your goals faster.
Want to stay virtual? Try online group classes
Group fitness is nothing new, but live online group fitness classes might just be the thing to form (or keep) your exercise habit until gyms reopen and return to their full working capacities.
Online group classes provide the best of both worlds – exercising from the comfort and safety of your home, with increased motivation, accountability, and positive social pressure regular group fitness classes offer, all guided by a professional fitness instructor.
Some courses or personal trainers may offer live small group instruction where an instructor can monitor your form and effort, along with viewing the efforts of others in the class.
Also, many online class platforms offer forums and community platforms to allow you to connect with fellow exercisers, support each other, and help one another to reach your goals.
Now that gyms are reopening and returning to full capacity, consider adding a group exercise class into your regular at-home exercise routine if it feels right for you.
The benefits are enormous: greater variety, in-person instruction and form correction, built-in accountability, and social connections.
Check out our Events calendar to find a local fitness class or workshop that interests you and see for yourself why group exercise classes are helping many people reach their fitness goals.