How To Prepare For Your First Group Fitness Class
By Kimmi Sterner
Unlike the leg-warmers, spandex suits and scrunchies, the participation in group fitness never goes out of style. In fact, with the introduction of various formats, group fitness is taking this world by storm.
If you haven’t stepped foot into a class yet, have no fear, there’s always time to join the movement. In fact, when people make the decision to live a healthier lifestyle, they often look to group fitness classes to give them the kick-start, booty-burn workout they need.
The following steps will give you all of the knowledge and confidence you need to feel prepared and successful when you’re getting ready to attend your first group fitness class.
1. Choose The Right Class
Not the most popular class, but the right class. Choose a class that fits your style. Don’t like to dance? Stay away from ZUMBA. Have a hard time staying quiet for a long time? Yoga isn’t for you.
Also, be honest with your current fitness level. Remember, you can only improve from here. Steer clear of the ultra-high intensity classes if the most exercise you’ve had the past couple years is walking from the couch to the fridge.
Most group fitness schedules have icons or a class key to signify the difficulty level of the class. You’ll feel much better about where you are in your fitness journey if you leave a class feeling like you could have done more rather than leaving feeling demolished and discouraged by the workout.
2. Research The Class
There’s no need to go into a studio blind to what you’re about to get yourself into. Think you’ll like a class? Look it up! The internet it an amazing tool. Find videos of the class to see what people wear, what kind of music they play and how the workout is set up.
3. Find A Buddy
Time and time again we are encouraged to find an accountability partner to join us in our efforts. There’s a reason for this – it works! Having a partner for progression increases the amount of positive reinforcement you will receive in your journey, motivate you to continue to work toward your goal because someone else is counting on you and give you the social connection you are built to crave.
4. Get Something Nice To Wear
Look good, feel good. If you’re new to this fitness thing, it is likely that you’re not feeling totally confident with your knowledge base or experience – or body, for that matter. Do what you can to give yourself that extra confidence boost by getting yourself a pair of those awesome patterned pants and a tank top that is bound to make your arms look fierce!
5. Talk To The Instructor
Before class, get there early to meet your instructor. This is your chance to tell them that it is your first time, tell them about any injuries you might need modifications for or just simply introduce yourself. I think I speak for all instructors when I say that we appreciate the introduction more than you know. We want to help – let us!
6. Stand In The Front
Before you freak out, close the tab on the computer and think I’m crazy – hear me out. If you’re new to a class, it can be difficult to see and hear the instructor clearly. You want to get the most knowledge and experience out of the class that you can.
You’re depriving yourself of the opportunity of efficiently improving your fitness level by hiding in the back corner and letting the front row divas take the stage. In the front, you’ll work harder and feel more inspired.
Worried people will look at you and judge you? Don’t. Everyone is using those mirrors in the front of the room to stare at themselves. They probably won’t even notice if your roundhouse kick looks like a move only found in the Hokey-Pokey.
7. Relax And Have Fun
Be selfish with this time. Put your phone away, listen to the instructor and get everything you can out of the class – including an insane amount of fun. That’s what these classes are meant for – to provide an uplifting, inspiring environment that keeps you wanting more. Get addicted to a class!
Don’t forget, instructors teach these classes because they love helping people and participants are in these classes, because they’re feeling the same way you are. Make friends, feel good and most of all, have fun!
Kimmi Sterner is a 20-something newbie to Los Angeles and is currently working as a Fitness and Wellness Coordinator at UCLA, with years of teaching group fitness classes under her belt. A recent graduate with herMaster’s in Health Promotion from University of Mississippi, Kimmi is eager to provide knowledge, resources and inspiration to others, which fuels her fire and gives her purpose in life. She’s already making an impact on the world and through her words, she’s excited to expand her reach to help even more people here at Fitlife!
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