Have you ever thought about how you could make your gym services more inviting?
Let’s take a pause on that question for a second.
Research has shown that individuals with better emotional and mental support are more likely to gain better physical results from working out. Based on such research, one way of making your gym services inviting is by offering fun group fitness.
It really is a no brainer. If more members feel supported emotionally and notice results from your classes, they will likely want to engage more in services and renew their memberships. Plus, working out in a group makes individuals feel more accountable to show up and use your services.
In this article, we will go through what group workouts are, some examples of group workout types and how to make group workouts fun.
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What are group workouts?
Group workouts are workouts involving multiple people hosted by one trainer. In a group workout, the number of participants taking part can vary based on the class size and the safety regulations, i.e., social distancing.
For your gym members, it can be a lot more beneficial as they save them a lot more money than personal training services. Moreover, research has shown that exercising with others can increase the likelihood of prosocial behaviors allowing your members to attend your gym more!
Plus, from an owner’s perspective, you could retain members and earn more money. Group workouts may be less costly than personal training services, but they allow you to receive more income based on the more people that attend, maximizing your earnings per session.
Examples of group workouts
There’s no limit to the type of group workouts you can host for your members; all it takes is a bit of creativity and planning. Here are a few examples of some popular group exercises you can host with your members:
Spinning, i.e., indoor cycling, is a great workout to get many people together exercising in one place. If you’re not entirely familiar with the concept, it’s a group of people cycling to music at different speeds, tensions, intervals, and beats.
Also, the bikes used in spinning are slightly different due to their handlebars having a specific shape and pedals. Before the class, participants also set their own goals according to their heart rate and calories.
The goal-setting in spinning can allow participants to feel like they’re making a communal effort. If you’ve not set up a spinning studio in your gym, check out how to set one up here.
Another easy group workout is circuit training, which combines several exercises to be done at different stations for a set time or a certain amount of repetitions. Normally between the exercises, there are short rest periods to allow people to recover. A circuit workout can involve simple exercises like jumping jacks, bear crawl, partner exercises, bodyweight exercises, push-ups, lunges, squats, burpees, dumbbells and other different exercises. Sometimes multiple circuits can be done in one group workout session to increase the intensity.
Pilates is also a good group exercise; it’s not intense and is suited to all fitness levels. This exercise is quite versatile and can be done in a gym or a studio.
If you’re not familiar with it, it’s a form of low-impact exercise that helps strengthen muscles and improves your posture, balance, mobility, and flexibility. The exercise targets the core and other body parts and develops mind-muscle connections. It can be done either with equipment or without.
Yoga is a really simple group workout to do; all you require is space, yoga mats, and an instructor. If you ever need to offer online services, yoga can be easily conducted through online platforms like Zoom and GoogleMeet.
This ancient practice can allow many people to feel good physically and mentally through breathwork and meditation. It also helps strength, flexibility, endurance, and calmness.
If you have a swimming pool, another great group class you can hold is water aerobics. Basically, this type of exercise involves people performing aerobics waist deep in water; it’s a form of resistance training. These classes are usually held for an hour to music and focus on different body parts.
Zumba is a popular fitness program worldwide that involves dancing to Latin and international music. There’s no equipment required for Zumba as it just involves an instructor, participants, music, and a fitness studio. This type of group workout is fantastic for various people from different fitness backgrounds as the workouts alternate between fast and slow rhythms to help improve cardiovascular fitness.
Another popular fitness regime that’s taken the world by storm is Crossfit. While there are affiliated CrossFit gyms around the world, there’s a lot of gyms hosting CrossFit style classes. These classes tend to be in groups, focusing on functional exercise using weights. It also involves high intensity interval training, strength, and conditioning. What’s unique about Crossfit is that it has its own community and unique phrases to allow your members to feel like they’re part of something.
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One fun way of getting people to hit their goals involves kettlebell weights in a group. These group workouts allow members to warm up together, lift and cool down.
It can be a lot of fun due to the weights involved. Normally these classes are best for regular gym attendees who already have a baseline fitness level. However, if you wish to cater to various people, you can also offer beginner and more technical kettlebell classes. All you need is a personal trainer, various sized kettlebells, and some music.
Bootcamp is a fun team workout to do indoors or outdoors. The purpose of bootcamps is to help build strength and fitness through various exercises. Often bootcamps require various equipment as they’re similar to circuit style training. Most of the time, they involve high intensity training with functional fitness moves.
How to make group workouts fun?
If you already host a range of group workouts or plan to, you must add some variation from time to time. Nowadays, most gyms offer group workout classes, and to really set yourself apart from others in the industry, you must make yours fun. If you’re stuck on trying to make yours fun, here are some suggestions:
1. Host workouts for the local community
While making gym sessions fun for your members is crucial, it’s also essential to give back to others around you. When you try and host group exercise classes for the community, you never know how many new members you could attract. For example, you might want to offer several free introductory group low intensity workouts for seniors.
Similarly, you could go around colleges and provide group classes tailored to students. Don’t be discouraged that it’s free, as showcasing your services to those outside of your gym allows others to get a taste of what you offer, and it’s a free promotion for your services.
2. Plan the group workouts
Group workouts are really fun to conduct, but one way of setting yourself above your competitors is by planning them in advance. For instance, if you know in advance who’s attending and you’re familiar with their fitness capabilities, you can plan workouts according to each person’s strengths and weaknesses.
Doing this will allow you to provide a personalized experience within a group session, allowing people to feel like they’re getting the most for their money.
3. Break the workouts up with warmups and cooldowns
The best group workouts often have a lot of variation to them. While your main workout might be difficult to change or make slightly different from other sessions, you can still mix it up a bit with different warm ups and cooldowns.
Doing this will not only help reduce your member’s muscle soreness and reduce their risk of injury, but it will also help keep them on their toes by not being able to predict your workouts.
4. Themed and fancy dress workouts
Do you celebrate any religious or cultural festivals within your gym? One way to add some spice to each workout is by offering themed and fancy dress workouts.
For example, if it’s Christmas time, you could host a Christmas workout where you get people to dress up red, wear Santa hats and work out to Christmas music. Also, if it’s Halloween, you could get people to come in fancy dress. Plus, you can get more creative and plan exercises related to the theme to make the workouts more memorable.
5. Take the workouts outdoors
Sometimes we can get accustomed to working out in our comfort zone in a studio or home. Try to mix up your group exercise classes by adding a change of scenery by taking them outdoors.
Doing this will also help you if you need to close your gym due to a pandemic, allowing you to still offer services. Moreover, they also can attract passerby in the local community providing you with additional attention and interest sparked in your gym.
6. Add guest instructors
Sometimes members can become too familiar with their own instructor knowing their routine and characteristics. To mix up their workouts and provide an element of mystery, you can get guest instructors to host classes.
For example, if you host a yoga class, you could get an instructor with a lot of extensive training and experience in India or Nepal to host it. Adding guest instructors will also provide you with a new opportunity to attract different members who’ve not participated in them before.
7. Raise money for a charity
You can host sponsored group workouts for charity to give yourself good press and infuse more fun into classes. For example, you could host sponsored danceathons, walkathons, strength competitions, obstacle courses, and more.
Hosting fitness challenges or group workouts for charity can really strengthen the morale in your gym and promote it at the same time. Just remember to pick a charity you’re highly passionate about and have fun while hosting them.
Overall, group workouts are an effective way to get more members to attend your gym regularly and also allow them to have fun with others. If workouts are fun, they can really help build your community, increase morale and help your retention.
To ensure they’re fun, remember to plan in advance, add variety and try not to make them too predictable. Your classes can stand out amongst your competitors if you do this, allowing your gym to look unique.
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