Group exercise, or group fitness as it is also known, is defined as follows:

An instructor led exercise session for two or more people, often involving music and equipment. Well known examples include dance fitness, group indoor cycling and Pilates’.

Essentially, it is about exercising with a group of people to a style or activity that you enjoy.  It’s about using a group setting to motivate you to push harder than you would if you were doing it alone.  It’s an hour of your time to get fit, have fun and meet new people.

Group exercise as we know it today can be traced back to the late 1960’s when Kenneth H Cooper introduced the concept of aerobic exercise, but exercising in a group to music has been around for much longer.

Group exercise has evolved dramatically and is more popular than ever with 4.86 million* people taking part in it every week.  Whether you love dancing, playing games, lifting weights, cycling, boxing, meditation and stretching or swimming there is a group exercise class you can take part in.  That’s what makes group fitness so exciting.  It offers something for everyone regardless of interest, age or ability.

You don’t have to be a member of a gym or leisure centre to do it, there is a huge variety of classes available in the community as well.  From church halls, village halls, community centres and schools, it’s likely there will be a class near you.

And it’s not just about getting fit.  It’s well-documented that regular exercise can combat depression. In fact, studies show that exercising is an even more effective treatment than taking medication – exercising three times a week can reduce the risk of depression by up to 20%. It is a friendly, social activity that is a great way to boost confidence and meet new people.

So get out there now and find a class near you.  Or if you feel inspired to take it a step further, find out how you can make group exercise a rewarding and lasting career.