How To Find The Right Group Fitness or Personal Training Class For You

How To Find The Right Group Fitness or Personal Training Class For You

Group fitness and small group personal training classes are becoming ever more popular amongst boutique fitness studios and commercial gyms.

If you are enthusiastic to join a studio, it can often feel a little overwhelming to know which type of workout will be the best option for you depending on your current fitness level and any physical limitations you may be facing.

In this blog post, we are going to outline some of the latest types of workout classes that most studio’s or gyms will offer to their members or drop-in clients.

We will then venture into the safest and most logical approach to selecting the best group fitness or personal training classes that will suit your level and your goals.

Realizing when to know that it’s time to ‘Level up’ or take on a new type of challenge.

Then we will equip you with some specific requirements and best practices that your studio of choice and Instructors, should be able to provide you with, before taking a class to ensure that the people your trust with your physical health are really focused on you and will keep your personal goals in the front of their minds.

The latest and greatest group fitness personal training classes are available.

Most Studio’s or gyms should have a fixed monthly timetable for their members to join, generally, these will only change or rotate every 3 month’s or so.

Most gyms or studios will have a core focus from Strength and HIIT classes, Yoga and Pilates, Rhythm cycling, boxing or Barre classes.

Many commercial gyms that have lot’s of space can cater for ALL of the above and generally have multiple studios within their facility allocated to particular exercise activities.

Some boutique fitness studio’s can go even further into specialization like Cross fit, functional movement training, Powerlifting, gymnastics or cardio workouts using heart rate monitors.

Like I mentioned earlier, this can be a little overwhelming at the start as to how do you know which class to choose?

Types of Fitness Training Classes 

In general, you can categorize these types of training into 4 key areas or fitness classes  and these are the areas that you can talk to the studio about to find out if they can cater for your needs

Strength Training Classes

These are typically classes that will help you become stronger, although some people (depending on their current fitness level) can actually get stronger from doing simple Bodyweight exercises at home, which is why home workout strategies are a great idea especially as an option this past 2 years.

But generally, if you look at the basic principles of strength training this relates to weight lifting.

Training with weights, using barbells, dumbbells and even body weight and is generally performed slowly, with control and lot’s of effort for a short time and has a longer rest period between sets.

These types of classes are very beneficial for building muscles, giving you a strong foundation to then jump, run, twist and move in different directions safely and efficiently.

These are the classes to focus on a lot at the beginning of your fitness journey or from recovering from a long layoff and to always maintain throughout your training journey.

The ACSM (American college of sports medicine) recommends a minimum of 2 x non-consecutive strength training sessions per week for normal healthy adults.

CONDITIONING or CARDIO Classes

Hard Music, strobe lights and a good looking bright-eyed and passionate Instructor at the front of the class “bringing the energy!” 

Welcome to your HIIT workout! 

With conditioning sessions, your resistance should be very light with lots of volume of repetitions in either short, medium or longer clusters of work. Generally in HIIT training, you will experience your heart rate jumping up quite high with bursts of effort, doing exercises like Jumping jacks, Burpee’s, mountain climbers, punching bags and rhythm cycling.

Many studios may recommend that these fitness classes are for everyone and although high-intensity interval training is an excellent way of getting fit, burning calories and staying healthy.

It’s important to know that your physical body is ready for the intensity or stress which is about to be placed on it. 

The Physical body is an amazing machine that can adapt to different stresses but physical preparedness is an important sports science principle when it comes to improving your health.

Jumping, or moving your body quickly through space involves a lot of pressure on the muscular system and your joints.

If you’re not used to training regularly, this can pose a potential risk of getting small muscle injuries that can cause non-ideal and length layoffs.

We always recommend clients who haven’t been training regularly to start with a 4 – 6 week block of regular strength training sessions first before starting high-intensity Interval classes to prepare the body for the stresses that can be placed on the body.We generally recommend using lower-impact cardio training at the beginning of your training journey and as maintenance throughout your program alongside strength or mobility and stability classes.

Mobility & Stability Classes

Slow, focused and integrated with the inclusion of breath work, mobility, stability and core.

These types of classes are generally good for recovery, opening movement pathways and building solid foundations.

These types of classes are generally slower in their overall set-up and execution and class flow similar to those of Strength type classes.

They include Yoga, Pilates, Barre and anything that is mainly core or mobility-related. 

Don’t be fooled into thinking these sessions are easy because they can make even the strongest of fittest class junky shake in their boots.

This is another great principle to consider when starting your fitness journey to enhance your foundation and prepare your body for stress.

Specialized Classes 

Just before the Pandemic set in at the beginning of 2020, the fitness scene in Thailand had really hit its peak, with more gyms and studios than ever popping up all over the country with Personal training and group class offerings available to suit a range of different tastes.

Alongside this peak came the rise of fitness challenges and competitions for avid fitness enthusiasts to become an athlete for a day and test themselves over a variety of different activities & exercise modalities at events across the country, region and even the world.

Big franchise entities like SPARTAN Race which is an obstacle race over different distances including; Carrying buckets, sandbags, climbing ropes, throwing spears and doing Burpees as punishment!

Establishments like the SPARTAN race have a huge following worldwide, the events are crazy fun with some studio’s offering Spartan based classes with workouts specific to SPARTAN racing.

CROSSFIT is another specialized training entity that utilizes a mixture of Olympic weight lifting, gymnastics and functional training tools to build brutal training WODS (workout of the day) to throw down the challenge to fitness enthusiasts all over the country to test themselves to become the fittest human!

Both these types of training classes demand foundational elements of skill and body awareness.

The requirements to take on the challenges on these types of activities include having a foundational level of all the above training principles mentioned; including mobility, stability, strength and conditioning.

And are not to be taken lightly, these specialized classes generally involve a mixture of all the training types we mentioned above BUT are mainly geared around SPECIFIC training principles for those SPECIFIC events.

So now you know what types of classes are available.

How do you know what is the safest and most logical approach to selecting the best group fitness or personal training classes that will suit your level and your goals?
The standard principle of Strength and conditioning is that mobility and stability come first followed by strength & light or low impact cardiovascular exercises HIIT or conditioning training and then specialized classes.

So if you were to map it out it may look like this 

Mobility and stability → STRENGTH &

low impact cardio → HIIT → Specialized 

 

Depending on where you are in your training journey, it is possible that you can bypass some principles, but how do you know if you have enough mobility or strength to level up? 

Is the key metric to be able to perform the Box splits and 50 Pull-ups unbroken?

Very similar to measuring the efficiency of employees at your company or your children at their school.

You can take a personal physical KPI to determine your physical readiness to determine which stage you should begin your training.

If the goal is to be able to simply start to exercise regularly, build muscle and burn fat and if for example that person is overweight and doesn’t have good hip mobility to sit into a squat, then having that person perform squats to build strength wouldn’t be productive.

In this case, a course of mobility would be a great strategy to open up movement pathways before going into strength classes.

Even if you are still not sure, you can speak to the studio Instructor and ask their advice on what you might need more of on your journey.

Have you ever considered taking a group fitness class or personal training? 
If so, then it’s time to narrow down your choices. 

  • The fitness studio or gym that you choose should have the following features in order for it to be successful and enjoyable:  
  • A fixed timetable with regular classes throughout the day.
  • The workout of the day clearly written up on display before the start of the session.
  • Classes are not too overcrowded and with plenty of equipment to supply each client within the class.
  • Experienced and drilled Instructors who will meet with you before the start of each class to discuss if anyone has any injuries or limitations when they arrive (so make sure you tell them about yours) and offer alternative movements/exercises to suit those clients.
  • Although group class sessions don’t have as much one on one focus as personal training does, you should feel like the instructor is constantly checking your form throughout the session and your instructor continuously coaching the group as a whole with cues and instructions to ensure that you are doing the movements and training at an optimum level.
  • It’s best to arrive at least 15 minutes before the start of each session to view the workout, find your space on the floor, get your water bottle and hand towel ready and get prepared mentally as well as physically for your session.

If you’re not sure which group fitness or personal training classes would best suit your needs, don’t fret. You can find a wealth of information online to help guide you in the right direction and even schedule a free consultation with our team of fitness experts to help get things started on the right track. Give us a call today at; 02-662-16-18, 0841304001.

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