Staying active and healthy is something we should all be concerned about.
There are so many good reasons to put your health high on your priority list because, let’s be honest, without your health you have nothing.
Often people feel there are many obstacles standing in the way between obtaining a healthier and fitter version of themselves.
The most common ones are time, money and not knowing where to start.
People can be afraid of the gym itself or are unsure on what to do once they get there and often worry that they are doing something ‘wrong’.
Not all of us can afford personal trainers to guide us in the right direction, so how do we get a well-rounded, effective and safe workout without emptying our wallet?
One option is group fitness.
Working in a small group of two to four people or a larger group fitness classes of up to 10 people can keep you motivated, provide support and accountability and, most importantly, structure.
There are many types of group fitness classes that you can participate in.
Classes such as Pilates focus on core strength and postural correction while others work on flexibility and strength.
In a small class, you can get a more well-rounded exercise routine and get a potentially tougher workout than you would on your own.
In these tough economic times, financial stress seems to be playing an even bigger roll in our daily lives.
Regular exercise helps keep our heart and lungs healthy, keeps our body weight, blood pressure and cholesterol in check and is a great way to relieve stress.
Group classes can be more affordable than hiring a trainer but offer similar benefits.
Time, or more accurately lack of time, is a huge obstacle for people trying to fit exercise into their already busy schedules.
Often people find they “don’t have the time” to fit in a two-hour exercise session at the gym or can easily find other things they “must” do instead.
A benefit of group classes is they often fit right into the busy lifestyles that many people lead.
If you are committed to a class at lunch hour or after work on a certain day, you are more likely feel more accountable to turn up.
It is also important to find a class that you enjoy in an environment you feel comfortable in.
Ideally, you should join a class that isn’t over-crowded.
If a group is too big, it can make you feel anonymous.
You may also not get the direction you need to learn proper form for exercises like push-ups or squats and that can result in an injury.
And if you’re in the back of a big class, it can be easy to slack off.
So why not give a group class a try? You will save money and utilise your time wisely while you get fit and feel great.
Deanna Smith is an exercise physiologist and Pilates instructor at ENERGY. She can be contacted at 946-6006 or [email protected]