by Susan Donovan
JCC Director of Fitness & Spa Services
Being involved in a community and surrounded by others with similar goals can have a huge positive impact on not only your results but also your mood and outlook on life!
This is not only true in your work, but also in your daily activities, which is why group-focused training programs and exercise classes remain a popular choice in clubs and studios.
Although for some, it may be uncomfortable to walk into a class full of people to workout, there are many advantages to exercising in a group, whether you are among friends or new to the group.
Here are three researched-backed benefits of exercising with others:
- Mental Health Benefits
“Group workouts can have a couple of mental advantages over solo workouts. While it’s true that working out releases endorphins (that great feeling you get, sometimes called a runner’s high), a group setting can lead to the release of endorphins outside of just physical exertion,” says John Ford, certified exercise physiologist, who runs JKF Fitness & Health in New York City. “We’ve seen many articles about the mood-boosting effects of regular physical activity and, it turns out, moving with multiple people may increase endorphin release “outside of just physical exertion.” And for those that find regular exercise a chore, moving with others is a great way to get through the workout with a sense that you are not alone, while also providing a level of camaraderie that will make the hour-long session fly by!
- Increased Performance
There’s nothing more motivating than the encouragement of others! When you’re surrounded by a group of people with a collective goal, you’re more likely to push yourself beyond limits you would set for yourself on your own. When you’re pushing yourself hard and struggling through more difficult parts of your workout, you’ll feel better and more energized to complete the workout, thus better results are seen.
- Commitment Level and Accountability
Starting or sticking to a new fitness routine on your own can be difficult, but when you have a certain group there waiting for you and people to hold you accountable, you are much more likely to accomplish what you’ve set out to do. I have found that members of group fitness programs or those exercising with a partner or Personal Trainer are less likely to skip workouts, which helps to keep them on track to succeed in reaching their health and wellness goals.
So grab a friend, join one of our fabulous group exercise programs, and find out how much fun getting in shape can be! Check out the full schedule of classes at jccnh.org/health-wellness.