Been working out alone and ready to try a group fitness class? Trying out a new gym or studio or even an outdoor bootcamp? Back to group fitness after a long break? Here are some tips:
1. Most gyms provide everything you need for group fitness classes. Typically you only need to bring a bottle of water (hydrating is a must) and a towel (gotta wipe up that sweat with something). If you are trying a yoga class and have your own yoga mat, you might want to take that as well.
2. Arrive early and introduce yourself to the instructor. Let her know you are new and if you have any injuries. Ask if she has any advice or what equipment you need.
3. While you may not be comfortable on the front row, don’t immediately jump on the back row. Depending on the setup of the room, it might be hard to see the instructor from the back. Find a spot in the middle.
4. Don’t worry if you can’t keep up in the beginning – that’s absolutely normal (especially for classes like Zumba). Do what you can and keep moving. Having a hard time seeing the instructor? Move places if possible. If not, watch someone in your class who looks like they have the steps down.
5. Turn your cell phone to mute or vibrate (especially for classes like yoga and Body Flow). There is nothing worse than being in corpse pose and someone’s cell phone blares out a tune.
6. Listen to the instructor. The good ones will give tons of clues, offer modifications (higher intensity, lower intensity), and helpful feedback during class. Sadly, not all instructors do this. Most gyms offer the same classes with different instructors on different days. If you don’t like the first instructor, try another one before giving up on the class.
7. Listen to your body. This is true no matter what class. If you are feeling any pain, short of breath, etc. Stop or slow down. I took a spinning class once where the instructor told people who if we hadn’t been coming regularly we should only do 30 minutes. Guess who didn’t listen to her? Guess who was sore for days? That’s right. ME!
8. Finally, bring a positive attitude and be prepared to sweat and have fun.
What tips would you add?