Photo - Getty Images

We all know how essential it is to stay active in our older years and how difficult it can be to connect with others after we leave the workforce. Additionally, it can be challenging to get motivated to work out or head to the gym. One way to deal with all three of these problems at once is by finding a group fitness class.

Participating in group exercise is an excellent way to stay motivated and active while meeting new people with similar interests and having fun. It’s not just group aerobics anymore either; there is a wide range of class options available, with something suitable for every preference and fitness level.

Even if you’re hesitant to get sweaty in a room full of strangers, there are many benefits to this type of fitness program that make it worthwhile. Find out more about group fitness and how to get started below.

What Can I Expect at a Group Fitness Class?

Some people find it a bit intimidating to go to a group fitness class, especially one that includes a lot of coordinated movement. Everyone around you seems to know what they’re doing already, and you’re left out, looking silly, right? Not quite. The other people in the class are there for the same reasons: to be active and make friends. Even if it looks like they have more practice, they will certainly remember what it’s like to be new. The instructors are also there to help and will often take the time before class to get to know newcomers and help them understand the flow and lingo of the class.

Photo – Getty Images

What Kind of Group Classes Are Available?

While group fitness may have started decades ago with women’s aerobics, it has grown substantially since then. You can now find classes for cycling, yoga, pilates, kickboxing, weightlifting, and more. There’s a group fitness class for just about any kind of exercise and ability level. Perform a quick internet search to find the one nearest you and give it a try.

How Do I Choose the Right Class?

Suppose you’re new to group exercise or haven’t been to the gym in a while and aren’t familiar with all the new types of workouts. In that case, you can take advantage of the trial period that many gyms offer. They know that people like to try out a workout before committing to membership. Most gyms will offer a few discounted or free sessions. Try out a few that sound fun and engaging, and pick your favorite, whether it’s because of the exercise or the company.

Are There Actual Benefits to Group Workouts?

It has been proven time and again that people who work out with friends are more likely to stick with a workout program and find success than trying it alone. Group exercise stimulates our brains’ affinity for being part of a tribe, a team, or a pack. These classes help us connect with others and work toward a common goal, even if we’re all reaching the goal individually. People are also more likely to push themselves during a group workout. Plus, the presence of an instructor telling you what to do helps those who might not know how to work out effectively on their own.

Trying something new and meeting new people usually means pushing yourself outside your comfort zone. It can be challenging, especially in a world where so much takes place virtually. But those who can break out of their shells and get onboard the group fitness train are likely to find a new hobby, some new friends, and a healthier mind and body.

The Active Aging Series is brought to you by our partner, Cambrian Homecare. Cambrian Homecare has been assisting individuals to stay independent in their homes for 25 years. Flexible experience you can trust, when the best place is still at home.