Why is it that when your alarm clock rings at 6 a.m. sharp, it is so much easier to just hit the snooze button than get out of bed, lace up and get yourself to your daily sweat sesh?! If, like us, you find yourself guilty of snoozing more often than sweating, then we’ve got just the thing: group workout classes.
So, can dancing, punching and lifting with a squad instead of solo really help you go from “dreading it” to “feeling it” when it comes to exercising? Science (and okay, our own personal opinion!) point to plenty of benefits of group fitness classes. Here are just a few that might convince you to break a sweat with your squad.
Cut Out the Fitness Guesswork
It’s not exactly inspiring to walk into a gym filled with intimidating equipment and rows of huge weights. Where exactly are you supposed to start?! And how do you even work these things?! One of the biggest draws of group workout classes is that each class is led by an experienced and motivational instructor.
That means you won’t have to figure out your own exercise plan or be a fitness whiz. Instead, all you do is show up and follow along. Each class is designed to be a complete workout, which includes a warm up and cool down plus explanations of each movement along the way. Easy peezy!
Get a Dose of Motivation
If you’re one of those people who kiiinda hates working out, then you’re gonna need one that delivers extra motivation, which is exactly what group fitness classes do! Even if you aren’t feeling up for a tough exercise sesh at the beginning of the class, the instructor’s positive attitude, along with the contagious energy of your classmates, will help raise your motivation. Soon, you’ll be moving along with everyone else.
Building Relationships and Community
As you begin attending class regularly, you’ll start to notice some familiar faces. Smiles and waves will turn into greetings and then into chats before and after class. Before you know it, your group fitness classmates will become authentic friends.
One of the best, and most underappreciated benefits of group fitness classes is the support, sense of community and friendships you’ll build. Knowing that you’ll see friends can actually make you look forward to going to class and improve your overall enjoyment of the experience. Plus, building fitness friendships can be good for your health! A study from the University of Southern California found that subjects who worked out with friends enjoyed working out more compared to working out alone. No surprise there!
It’s easy to slap that snooze button on your alarm clock when no one is expecting to see you. However, once your group fitness instructor and classmates get used to your presence, they’ll start asking questions when you miss a class or two. Dr. Dian Griesel, the co-author of TurboCharged agrees, stating in an article fo NBC News that “Workouts with others improve consistency because they involve commitment. ‘No shows’ and cancellations get noticed by others and positive peer pressure can help curtail the urges to skip a workout…or quit.”
Greater Workout Variety
Performing the same workout over and over again is not only boring, but will likely lead you smack into a fitness plateau…the worst! Working out with others in a group fitness environment means you’ll get a unique workout every time. Plus, your instructors don’t want to do the same workout any more than you do! They’ll throw in new moves and combinations with each class. You can also take different classes throughout the week, which will provide the added bonus of never allowing your body to adapt to a single exercise modality.
Fitness and Fun Rolled into One
Upbeat music? Check. Supportive and friendly instructor? Check. Awesome people working their booties off just like you? Check, check, check! Working out in a group is just more fun. Not only will you get to enjoy the natural endorphins (aka happy brain chemicals) that exercise produces, but you’ll also be surrounded by like-minded exercisers and a few new friends.
Greater Fitness Results
The whole point of exercising is to improve your overall mental and physical health and wellness, right? So, you’ll be excited to learn that working out with others can actually improve your fitness results. The Köhler Effect is a concept that says no one wants to be the weakest member of the group and will therefore work harder in group settings. You can use this effect to your advantage in a workout with friends. If your workout buddies are a little faster or stronger than you, you’ll work harder to keep up.
Scientific research backs up the theory. A paper in the Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology found that participants who performed planks with a stronger partner were able to hold their plank for 24% longer than when they planked alone. In other words, your natural competitive juices can help you work out harder in a group. You may even want to snag a spot next to the fittest person in the class for even more motivation.
Tired of Hating Your Workouts?
If you’re desperate to find a workout for people who hate working out, then give Jazzercise a try. We strongly believe in the power and positivity of group fitness. That’s why we are proud to offer group workout classes. Whether you are looking to improve your cardio, your strength, or all-of-the-above, you can find the right class for you along with a safe and welcoming environment.