10 Reasons to Attend a Fitness Class


by Tara Daye, PTS/FIS
A recent study found that in addition to women, more and more men are participating in group fitness classes.  By offering a variety of different training techniques, environments, and challenging workouts for all ages and fitness levels, group fitness class numbers are on the rise. Wondering what all the buzz is about? Here are ten reasons to rethink your workout and join the crowd!
1.     Efficient and Fast-Paced
Group fitness classes tend to feel as if they go by quickly. By changing up the pace, routine and exercises, you will be so focused on following the instructor, you will find yourself forgetting about the clock!
2.     You Can Go at Your Own Pace
An experienced group fitness instructor will be able to offer modifications that allow for different fitness levels among the participants. Most classes will offer beginner, intermediate, and advanced exercise options. If you are concerned about getting started, be sure to show up a few minutes prior to class and chat with the instructor and ask for advice. Developing a relationship with your instructor is the key to finding the workout that will challenge you in a safe manner.
3.     Incorporate Some Fun
A great fitness instructor will not only guide you safely and effectively through your workout, but will also make it more enjoyable than grinding it out on your own by adding humor, great music, and motivation to your workout.  The instructor will encourage all participants to get involved and interact with the group.
4.     Social
Made up of similarly motivated individuals, group fitness classes can be a great way to bond with others over your common goals and experiences.
5.     Refine Your Technique

Group fitness allows you to be guided by a certified professional fitness instructor who will use cues to ensure proper execution and technique in movement. Whether it be a weight lifting class, cardio based class, or anything in between, a good instructor will give great tips to make your workout more efficient and effective.

6.     Motivating
The group experience can help motivate people to work harder. In addition to being led and challenged by the instructor, working with others offers an additional level of competition and camaraderie.

7.     Challenging

Being motivated to keep pace with the group means that you will be challenged to work harder and perhaps longer than you normally would. Working out on our own is great, but most of us tend not to work as hard as we can when we are alone. Exercising with others and having a leader guide the group provides a boost to the workout, making us work harder and push ourselves more.

8.     Variety
Group fitness offers so many different options including: bootcamps, cycling, kickboxing, yoga, weight lifting, running clubs and walking groups. The newest trend in group fitness are classes that offer a variety of options, like the blending of cardio and weight training, or HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) classes which combine weights, cardio and core in a super, calorie burning, time-crunched workout.
9.     Educational
A good class will not only challenge and motivate, it will teach you new moves and show you how to do them properly. Trying something different is a great way to exercise your mind and your body. 
10.     Safety
When beginning a new or different fitness routine, it’s especially important that you do so in a safe manner. The right instructor will be able to help explain what you’re doing, how to do it properly,  what you should be feeling and where you should be feeling it. Instructors are able to model exercises and use tactile cues to help ensure the safe execution of their routines. Be sure to ask questions or ask for alternative exercises if you need additional assistance. 
If you are bored with the machines or tend to stick with the same routine each time you enter the gym, you may just be surprised and pleased with what you will take away from a fitness class! Working out with others that share the same goal can get you motivated to stick to your fitness plan. Group exercise provides us with an opportunity to feel young and energized and be physically active with others. Classes also offer a consistent exercise schedule, an accountability factor for participating in exercise, and a workout that requires no prior exercise knowledge or experience.  

If you are looking to shake up your fitness routine this fall, check out a group fitness class for a new, fresh approach to a workout that offers you lots of variety, motivation and encouragement in a fun-filled setting!  Challenge yourself this fall to try Group Fitness – you will be very glad you did 🙂
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