Joining a new and established group can be daunting and scary. There are many benefits for joining an exercise group but if the fear outweighs the benefits, it can be easy to give up before you even start. Understand the benefits and overcome your fears to ensure you don’t miss out on the loads of benefits that groups provide.
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Whether it’s a new job, school, golf tournament, indoor soccer team or volunteer organisation, people often worry about how they will compare to others and what they’ll think.
I’ve been running a boot camp for four years now and when new people enquire about joining, they always have the same concerns. They’re anxious about how they’ll cope and how others will perceive them.
The Benefits of Exercising With a Group:
- Social interaction.
The more time you spend with people who are fit, healthy and happy, the more fit, healthy and happy you become. Social interaction with positive people is an important component of good health.
Trainers provide great support and motivation, but so do the participants. When people undergo challenging tasks as a group, they form a bond. This bond is strengthened as people help and support each other to achieve common goals.
- Someone to coach you.
Exercising in a group is much cheaper than hiring a personal trainer; plus, you still have someone who can check on your technique. Trainers have been taught how to perform exercises correctly and how to teach those exercises, along with modifications for all sorts of fitness levels, physical ailments and previous injuries.
- Tell you what to do.
Joining a group takes the hassle out of figuring out what to do for yourself. You don’t need to worry about whether you are training the right energy system, muscle groups or categories of fitness for your goals. This is all done for you by the trainer so you can simply turn up and do it, knowing you’re doing exactly what you need to do to achieve your goals.
How to Overcome Your Fears of Joining an Exercise Group:
- Reflect on your previous experiences with joining groups.
Do you have any ongoing relationships to this day from previous groups you’ve been apart of? Did you gain anything from those groups beyond what you initially joined for? People are often afraid of the unknown.
- Confidence grows with familiarity.
To create some familiarity, try desensitising yourself by making contact with the trainer ahead of time. Ask questions and become as familiar as possible with what to expect.
- Be optimistic.
Frame your fears in your mind as positive thoughts. This will lead to positive feelings and assist positive outcomes to ensue. Get excited about the opportunities that your fears hold. Make a list of all the positive consequences that could occur if you overcame your fear in this instance.
- Decide on your perfect outcome.
What is your reason for joining? When you really know your reason for joining, you’ll have a strong motivator for overcoming your fear. Write down the first action you can take to build momentum - the absolute first thing you can do to start your journey. Once you start the ball rolling on momentum, ensure your keep it!
There are many benefits to exercising in a group. Group exercise enhances your self-esteem by surrounding yourself with positive people. You have a group of people who support you and keep you accountable, someone to coach you in proper human movement and prescribe the right exercises to achieve your individual goals.
What do you like about the groups you're a member of?
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