If you feed off group energy, love the idea of working out to music and want to be more active to improve your fitness levels, you’ll feel right at home doing group exercise classes.
The good news is there’s a huge range of different types of exercise classes to choose from. So whether you’re seeking high intensity workout classes that deliver big bang calorie expenditure or a relaxing mind and body class, such as yoga or tai-chi there will be something that suits. Additionally, with so many classes on offer the exercise experience you’re seeking whether it’s to have fun, follow the latest fitness trends or to distress are all well catered for. And it doesn’t stop there as many class instructors offer class workouts that are tiered to suit different ability and fitness levels.
With so much on offer it can be difficult to know which type of exercise class is the right one for you, so here’s our run through of some of the great ways group exercise classes can deliver amazing results.
Types of Exercise Classes
Exercise classes are designed to cater for and reach a wide audience. Whilst individual classes can be very specific in the type of audience they appeal to there are so many classes on offer there really is something for everyone.
Family Exercise Classes
Family orientated exercise classes are designed to get the whole family working out together and getting active. They instil positive habits in children that hopefully progress through into their teenage and young adult years and beyond. What’s more with so many parents struggling to find the time for regular exercise this is an activity they attend and do rather than watch from the side-lines. The emphasis is on fun, enjoyment and expert coaching every step of the way so that the correct technique is adhered to.
Active Ageing Classes
Active ageing classes encourage staying active, healthy and keeping moving and are tailored towards older adults. Classes are carefully designed to suit physical ability levels and offer social interaction. Classes range from low to medium intensity aerobics, spin classes for older adults and seated movement classes, where movements can be performed from a chair for the less mobile.
Mind and Body Classes
Mind and body classes such as yoga, pilates and tai chi are aimed at achieving suppleness, flexibility and body and mind harmony. They are a great way to distress, unwind and relax after a busy day and suit all ages and fitness levels.
Exercise Classes for Beginners
Exercise classes for beginners allow you to set your own limits and workout with group members of a similar ability. These classes tend to go at a slower pace as the instructor carefully guides class members through routines and exercise moves. If you’re looking for something of low impact aqua aerobics is a great option, you might not even feel like you’re working out!
Niche Feature Workout Classes
If you’re keen to follow the latest trends niche workout classes like aerial yoga, high intensity interval skipping (HIIS), pole fitness and barre fitness are some great choices.
Some niche classes are here to stay for the long haul while others come and go meaning these are perfect for class participants who like the idea of regular change.
Fun Exercise Classes
Having fun with fitness and looking after both mind and body go hand in hand. The more fun you’re having along the way the more the body is at ease helping to reduce day to day stressors. What’s more your workout will be finished in no time. Exercise classes such as hula fit, doga, zumba, trampolining and disco style workouts are jam packed full of the fun factor.
Getting Started with Group Exercise Classes
A well-choreographed exercise class you commit to attending on a regular basis can make a huge difference to your fitness levels, vitality and well-being. But with such a vast range of types of exercise classes on offer, for the exercise newbie it can feel pretty daunting figuring out how to get started.
Check out our top tips and before you know it you’ll have found the ideal activity for you and be reaping all the benefits these workout classes have on offer.
Try first with an introductory class
Introductory classes help you get familiar with the class style, venue, content, moves, music, lingo and you get to meet the instructor and class participants. Many gym memberships offer group exercise classes as part of the membership package and this is a great way of testing a few different classes before you commit. Or, search for ‘exercise classes near me’ to discover what’s available in your local area. Often these classes are on a block booking basis for around ten classes at a time, but most instructors are willing for you to pay as you go for a short while and some provide free ‘taster’ classes.
As well as giving the class a trial this is a great way of asking any questions and making sure the class caters for your needs in terms of coaching and assisting you with the exercises.
Slow and steady wins the race
There’s nothing more off putting than starting a class that’s too advanced and find yourself struggling to keep up! Good exercise class instructors will give a range of options as part of their class tuition so you can go at the pace that’s right for you. Ease your way into the class by working at an intensity that feels comfortable and remember the most important thing at the start is to focus on mastering the exercise techniques and to have fun. From here you can ramp up the intensity as your confidence and capabilities grow.
Ask about observing
If an introductory class feels a bit too in at the deep end then ask about the possibility of watching the class you’re thinking of taking. If you feel it’s something you’d enjoy then why not give it a go?
Opt for a class that matches your fitness goals
Finding the time for a few fun exercise classes each week adds variety and helps improve overall fitness. Think about choosing classes geared to your personal goals. For cardio based high calorie burn opt for group cycling, step aerobics, and HIIT. For strength, circuits, body pump and boot camps are great options and for flexibility and relaxation yoga, pilates and tai chi are well worth a go.
Check the class timetable
Finding a class timetable that fits easily into your routine is important. Popular classes often operate a booking schedule and less popular classes may require a minimum number to run, so a little homework here is definitely worthwhile.
Think about progression
One of the great benefits of group exercise is that the feeling of being ‘in it together’ helps with class attendance and adherence. Before you know it going to your chosen classes will be part of your regular routine. But are you continuing to make progress week in, week out or has your body adjusted to your exercise class routine and started to plateau?
This is where class progression can make a huge difference. Look out for group exercise classes that offer different levels such as beginners, intermediate and advanced or progression across a range of specifically designed class types. For example, aerobics, spin and high intensity interval training classes.
Finding your ideal class
Enter ‘exercise classes near me’ into your web browser and you’ll get a whole list of class options in your local area. Class finder also lists a wide variety of classes and gives you the option to select different class types and areas.
Teaching Group Exercise
Once you’re in the groove with your own exercise class routine a natural transition is to think about becoming a group exercise instructor. Here you’ll be able to use all your talents and strengths to deliver your very own carefully choreographed classes.
Find out more about teaching group exercise and how to start your very own fitness journey.