We’ve all witnessed it: finding the drive to actually show up at boot camp with a friend at 6 a.m.; nailing the last set of squats when you watch people around you pushing through or pushing yourself to run a 5k race in less time than your personal best. There is something to be argued about the effectiveness of group exercise, but what is it about working out with others that inspires us?
There is some validity to the proverb “There’s strength in numbers” when it comes to workouts, according to certain subject matter experts we consulted.
According to Rob McGillivray, personal trainer and founder of RETROFIT, “group activity may not be a new concept, but it has certainly seen massive international up-trends over the last 20 years with rapidly rising numbers in spin cycling, aerobic and dance-based classes and the emergence of CrossFit and its tribe mentality. “I think it to be a key indicator that exercising with a group or using it to improve internal or external competition performance is soon becoming the preferred type of exercise,” said the author.
Group exercise is not only popular right now, but it also significantly improves our health.
According to research, we can pick up good behavior from other people. According to a study in the Journal of Social Sciences, people tend to imitate the exercise habits of those around them. Additionally, a 2016 study in the journal Obesity discovered that obese individuals tend to lose more weight when they spend time with their fit companions; the more time they spend together, the more weight they lose.
This presents a pretty compelling case for group exercise. But this is only one of the numerous factors that may make becoming fit in a pack simpler (and more pleasurable).
Working out in a group can make your workouts more effective.
Here are several specific advantages of working out in a group, whether it’s a group exercise class at the gym or a run in the park with some pals.
1. Increase your dedication to a fitness regimen
According to Dian Griesel, Ph.D., co-author of TurboCharged and president of public relations agency DGI, “working out with a crowd carries a plethora of intertwined benefits that include enhancing consistency, duration, motivation, conversation, and inspiration.” “Because they require a commitment, workouts with others increase consistency. Positive peer pressure can assist control the temptations to skip a workout or quit because “no-shows” and cancellations are observed by others.
2. Strive to be better
According to the Köhler Effect, no one wants to be the weakest link in a group. This translates to pushing yourself harder when working out with people who are more fit than you when it comes to fitness.
3. Gain a competitive edge
We all have an underlying competitive nature, which is one reason why you might push yourself harder while others are groaning alongside you. “Group environments can foster healthy competition. For instance, trying to keep up with others can cause you to exert more effort than you otherwise would, according to John Ford, a licensed exercise physiologist, and owner of the boutique training business JKF Fitness & Health in New York City. “Watching what other people accomplish can motivate you to work harder. Personally, I’ve experienced this: Observing others let me realize I had placed some mental barriers to trying new exercises or routines or pushing myself harder.
4. Profit from endorphins:
“Group exercise has a few mental advantages over solo exercise. While it’s true that exercising releases endorphins (remember all the talk of runner’s highs? ), a communal environment can cause the release of endorphins independent of physical activity, according to Ford. “Smiling is one method. Studies have revealed that smiling raises endorphin levels. Therefore, this kind of camaraderie can really make you feel fantastic outside of just your runner’s high whether you’re in a terrific class or working out with a nice group of people.
5. Increase the variety of your workouts
Is having a gym buddy another perk? Having spotters will allow you to safely do workouts to failure and ensure that you are performing them correctly, advises Ford. In certain cases, working out with a workout buddy can even enable you to complete workouts that you were unable to complete alone. Think about pull-ups with a buddy.
6. Join a team for support and accountability:
“I think working out as a group is the greatest way to get things done. I have taught hundreds of workshops over the past few years, ranging from yoga to boxing, and the best part of it all is watching the participants enjoy their workouts, says Yabut. “Watching someone accomplish feats they never imagined possible is a fantastic feeling, especially when it was the person next to them that inspired them to finish the set, rep, mile, or round. When a group struggles, perspires, quarrels, and grinds their way through a challenging workout, a bond is formed. I concentrate on developing relationships with my students because I know they will return the next day if I do.