Training is a different process for each of us. It varies with preference, physical condition, objectives, and other factors that may be internal or external. But if you're looking for something motivating, guided and proven to be positive for your physical, psychological and emotional well-being, group classes are an excellent option.
Who should take group classes
Group classes are designed to be inclusive, so there are options for the vast majority of people. Some classes are more intense, others are gentler. Longer classes and others that last less. It is also normal to have classes at various times of the day so that you can include training in your daily routine.
Some examples of group classes are yoga (mind and body), body pump (muscle toning), spinning (riding an exercise bike), body combat (martial arts simulation), zumba (dance) and water aerobics (gymnastics in water). But there are many more that vary according to the offerings of the gym or health club you go to.
Taking group classes means making new friends
We start, perhaps, with the main benefit of taking group classes: the social component! In a group class it is possible – in fact, it is highly likely – to make new friends and meet people with the same interests and motivations as us. And it has been proven that the feeling of belonging to a group helps to overcome barriers and enhances the feeling of inner well-being, which is noticeable on the outside.
Furthermore, the group helps with motivation, helps with wanting to return to that positive environment, making it easier to obtain physical results that are also so important!
The importance of mental health
Exercise is not just good for your body. Your mind will thank you too. Quite. One of the main advantages of regular physical exercise is the reduction of stress. The society we live in constantly puts pressure on us, and a good group class helps to release that pressure, helps you smile, relax and “clear” your mind.
Motivation and Self-Esteem
It's easy to find excuses for not going to train: because it's cold, because the day at work was very tiring, because you couldn't wake up earlier, etc. But another benefit of group classes is that they provide you with the extra motivation you need these days. You know you have people waiting for you and you don't want to disappoint your new friends or the instructor! And there is also the motivation to train more and better. This is the strength of group classes: rowing together!
Another proven factor is that you will progress, become fitter, you will notice this change, and this will have a very positive impact on your self-esteem. For example, when you start doing Body Pump, use the lightest weights. But over time you will gain weight. And this feeling of overcoming is a boost in your self-confidence that will make you happy.
Perhaps improving your physical condition is the most obvious benefit, since we are talking about classes = training. But we left it until last because this result happens both in group classes and in solo training. The difference is that group classes can provide an environment more conducive to maintaining the routine and progressing in training, thanks to the group's motivation and the feeling of community.
But also in terms of physical condition, classes can offer something additional. By attending different classes, you will train different muscle groups and make different mechanical requests (movements) in each type of class and this diversity will help you train in a complete and holistic way. The whole body thanks you!
Laugh and Sing
Throughout the article we have mentioned several times that group classes will make you happy. We said you were going to make new friends, and that you were going to like yourself more. But we didn't say that one of the characteristics of group classes is that all the training is done to the sound of lively music and that you can sing – if you know the words. It is another key tool in the success of this type of training because we all know the unconscious and positive effect that music has on us. Especially when someone is taking the class and singing without knowing the words!!
Group classes are truly powerful. They are a tool that has changed the lives of millions of people who would never have been able to maintain a training routine if they didn't do it in a group.
If you haven't taken a class yet, we challenge you to try it.
If you take classes regularly, we hope you see yourself in the article. And you can comment to add your opinion and experience.
One last reference to Les Mills that inspired me for this article and made me fall in love with training 15 years ago. Les Mills is part of the fitness revolution because it has made fitness accessible, fun and transformative with classes as we know them. If you take group classes, it is most likely a Les Mills class or one inspired by its principles.