Are you noticing a few more guys in your group fitness classes lately? Or are you one of those guys? Welcome to the benefits of group fitness classes! A recent study found more men are participating in group fitness classes. The variety of training techniques, environments, and challenging workouts are on the rise, making group fitness more popular and beneficial than ever before. We all know that exercise is great prevention, which is part of the WAGs philosophy.

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1. Saving Time: Forget watching the clock! The pace of group fitness classes makes the time fun and the energy level of the instructor makes you forget you’re working hard (okay, sometimes!). Looking at the clock or the time on your exercise or cardio machine is a thing of the past.

2. Saving Money: Personal training, which we also like, is roughly three times the cost of a single group fitness class. Many studios offer discounted rates when you buy in bulk, or you can negotiate a rate. The group exercise benefits you gain with a workout also save you money on health care, as people who workout are far less likely to get sick and also recover from illness and injury quicker than non-exercisers.

Keep the Benefits Coming…

3. Make it Social: Group fitness is a great way to meet like-minded and like-motivated individuals. You’ll find you share common goals and interest which can be a great motivator to work hard in class and create accountability for coming back week after week.

4. Set the Tone: Group fitness is no longer confined to big-box gyms or health clubs (“Full-Service Gyms Feel Flabby” from The New York Times). Small studios and fitness centers are on the rise with their personalized and detailed attention to your needs as a client. If being inside is not your thing, you can try websites like Meetup.com to find groups that exercise outdoors. We love taking our Wrist Assured gym gloves with wrist support and going outside for a boot camp style class (helps with those planks and dips, no matter the surface!).

5. MOTIVATION!: Having someone telling you to work harder and encouraging you to take your fitness to the next level will get you there. The instructor sets the tone, while having others in class offers another level of motivation through a tiny bit of competition and camaraderie.

6. Challenge: Our #5 benefit of motivation ties into the benefit of group fitness training where you will be challenged to work harder. You want to keep pace, meaning you will be challenged to work harder. Studies have proven that working out with a group results in a bigger calorie burn.

7. The NO-BOREDOM FACTOR: Is there anything you CAN’T find with group fitness? Pilates, yoga, bootcamp, spinning, boxing, circuits, TRX, Kettlebells, running clubs and hiking groups. Whatever your flavor or need, chances are you can find a class or encourages someone to start one. Many of the group fitness classes are developed in larger cities and provide hybrids of popular favorites, such as Pilates, cardio, and boxing, resulting in workouts like Piloxing. Or try a class that combines cardio and strength training, such as an indoor cycling class combined with TRX or yoga.

8. Learn Something New: A good class and a great instructor will show you how to work your body and muscles  properly. Trying something different challenges both your mind and body, two things that ward off the effects of aging.

9. Safety: When beginning a new or different fitness routine, feeling safe and being safe are key. Since Paula, the creator of WAGs is an occupational therapist and created WAGs to prevent joint injuries, we are especially mindful of alignment and safety, no matter what you’re doing. Instructors will be able to help explain and model what you’re doing, how to do it, and what you should be feeling. Never hesitate to ask questions or as for alternative exercises if you need additional assistance.

10. Join the Group, or Go Your Own Way: An experienced group fitness instructor will offer modifications that allow for different fitness levels among the participants. Most classes will offer beginner, intermediate, and advanced exercise options. Make sure to come at least 5 minutes early when you’re taking a new class and introduce yourself to the instructor. Developing a relationship with your instructor is key to finding the workout that will challenge you in a safe manner.

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