Poll: Do You Take Workout Classes?

1SHARES

By: , SparkPeople Blogger
4/19/2012 2:00 PM   :  289 comments   :  21,295 Views

See More: fitness, poll, exercise, gym,

It's been a long time since I have taken a workout class at a gym. I normally do my workouts on my own, but I joined a gym a few months ago and want to shake up my workout routines a bit and am now considering going to a few of the classes that they offer. I hate to admit it though, but that makes me nervous and even a little bit scared (even though I have gained a lot of confidence with reaching various goals). What you may not know though, is that I'm not the most coordinated person and I usually have to modify exercises to suit my physical ability/needs, so that is where the feelings of being nervous and scared come in. What if I make a fool of myself in some way (whether it is going the opposite direction and running into someone, dropping a weight if I lose my grip, or just not picking up on what it is that I should be doing)?

Well, I know in the past that I had similar feelings and was able to get past them eventually. Back then, I started out in the back of the class first and would sometimes be towards the front, but never actually in the front. I hated the thought that others might watch me and perhaps criticize my every move. Scary thought, right? I mean, who wants others to watch and criticize you, especially when you are not that coordinated? It's one thing to do workout videos at home -- there is nobody there watching to see all the missteps that you take, but it is a completely different story when you are surrounded by a large group of people that are workout class veterans.

Something I must keep in mind are my past experiences and that as I start going to these classes, over time I will get used to the classes and they won't be so scary. Additionally, isn't it possible that the others are worrying about themselves just as much as I am worried about myself? I think so. If they aren't, and they really are watching me, I suppose I will give them some good entertainment value. At any rate, I have decided to take another big leap in my journey and not worry about what others are thinking about me or if they are watching me mess up some choreography in a workout class. I'm going there for myself to add more variety and challenge to my current workouts and that is what I need to remember, even if I don't do everything perfectly. Despite my feelings of being nervous and a little bit scared to do something new, I have decided it is time for me to leave my comfort zone of working out on my own (at home and in the gym).

 

Do you take any workout classes? If so, which workout classes are your favorite? Have you been (or are you) scared or nervous to take a workout class? Do you have an recommendations on how to get over those feelings?



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Comments

  • 239
    3 Metafit classes a week, also at least 2 from Les Mills Body Pump, Les Mills Body Combat, Kettlercise, Vipr, or FTZ TRX circuits. - 9/9/2012   2:37:30 PM
  • N16351D
    238
    I absolutely love exercise classes for several reasons.I have been in Pilates, Yoga, Ballet, Jazz, Jazzercise, Aerobics, Strength, Zumba and other classes. I get exercise, make new friends, learn new skills and ways to move, stay motivated and have fun with other like-minded people. I am terrible at exercising at home because that is where I work (cleaning, dishes, laundry, cooking, etc.) and those chores are never done (have to be done over again each day). It is boring to do it solo.

    Starting something new is always uncomfortable, that is just the nature of getting involved in something unfamiliar. I am not particularly athletic or coordinated, but so what? I have become that way after years of consistent exercising. I accept being uncomfortable with something new as part of life in new activities and know I will soon fit in as I learn what to do and get to know people. That is part of the adventure! Sure beats doing it alone! I could care less what others think about me when I am exercising. I have to live in my body, not others, so I am going to take care of it. Classes help me take care of me. - 9/7/2012   8:59:51 AM
  • 237
    Good article........I took two separate yoga classes within the last several year. Both times the instructor pushed us all too hard .... Which resulted in injury for me. I did Curves for a year until they closed down, a step class that got way too crowded. Many years ago I did water aerobics which was fun. Maybe I'll join the Y for the winter months and give that a try again. Okay, okay...I will look the schedule up RIGHT NOW! :) - 9/6/2012   6:53:54 AM
  • KAITSMOM73
    236
    I started spin classes last febuary and I am hooked! I felt like you and was embarrassed starting at 279 lbs. Was months before I got up outta the saddle. Since then I have gained alot in that class, made friends, confidence. I go to the ymca and they make it very easy to try a new class and encourage you. so I wish you luck. - 8/20/2012   2:35:50 PM
  • 235
    Several years ago I took my first ever fitness class, the class & instructor were perfect for what I needed at that time in my life - a simple "stretch and tone" class. A few years and a variety of fitness classes later I still enjoy fitness classes, infact, I now am a certified group fitness instructor, and am certified also as a Spin instructor. I love teaching, and I still enjoy being the participant/student too! - 7/29/2012   5:11:16 PM
  • BETSYROBYN
    234
    Classes are the best way to: learn how to use weights properly or do kickboxing moves or abdominal exercises or Zumba or yoga moves, etc. The instructor is motivating, will correct your form, demonstrate how to do the moves, etc. It is a great way to meet others just like you. Start by going up to instructor at the beginning of the class, say that you are new, ask what weights or supplies you need. If the instructor is good, she(he) will guide you. Stay in the back and watch what the other class participants are doing. - 7/28/2012   10:48:16 PM
  • 233
    I take the fitness classes at Planet Fitness as much as possible and I enjoy them. Our instructor is great. She makes sure you get a well rounded work out for whichever muscle group the class is doing and that you are using proper form to prevent injuring yourself. She also realizes that everyone is not at the same fitness level or have restrictions (for example bulging discs) and gives modified or alternate options for them. The time seems to pass faster in the group setting to me which means I am engaged and willing to spend more time working out. I also learn new things that I can then use when working out on my own. - 7/4/2012   9:57:01 AM
  • 232
    I love the Zumba classes at my gym. They offer it on Wednesdays and Saturdays. I enjoy the Saturday class the best. Each class has a different instructor and they each have their own style.
    It's funny to see when people who regularly attend Wednesday evening Zumba wonder how I pick up choreography easily and I don't go as often. I know I probably make them a little bit mad...sorry : )
    I don't go to nightclubs so this is the only chance I have to dance.
    Also, don't be afraid to step up to the front. That's where you can see the instructor and you may be able to pick up the moves much better.
    I promise you no one's laughing because they probably can't do much better than you anyway. - 6/28/2012   9:25:02 AM
  • 231
    I could have written this, because I had all the same fears and incoordination. In fact, I have been the only one grapevining to the right, or facing the back of the room when everyone else is facing left. You know, it's not that bad. I usually just shrug and give a helpless sort of smile and so far, everyone has smiled back. I am improving now, and so is my self confidence...and people are not there to judge, just to battle their own demons. - 6/28/2012   8:20:13 AM
  • 230
    My favorites are Cardio Dance and Zumba. I also really like Group Power and Group Active. Group power is lifting, using free weights, to music. Group active is a combination of step aerobics, free weights, balance, and core.

    I was very nervous to attend my first classes. 2 things really helped me. 1, go with a friend. Having someone there to share the scare really takes the edge off. 2, get to know the instructor. Instructors generally really do want people in their classes and will do whatever it takes to make you comfortable and make sure you are getting everything out of the class. - 5/16/2012   11:06:15 AM
  • IAM1WOMAN
    229
    I love fitness classes especially now. If I could compare myself to someone, & believe me when I tell you that I don't know you, but you I probably would compare myself to you as far as being clumsy (I just fell off a stability/fitness ball) last Thursday & either I do or nearly do in every class, fall, run into someone else causing them or myself pain. It is not pretty watching me workout. I am also disabled so I am not loaded with confidence. Learning to laugh at yourself is part of the healing or learning process so that you can handle or deal with the feeling that people are laughing at you. You are right when you said that they probably aren't laughing at you. They are laughing with you even though the timing was so perfect that they laughed at the same time you decided to be a comedian. It is just a coincidence. LOL! Go ahead & laugh. We all need more laughter in the world anyway. If you have a friend to go work out with, it might be a little easier to catch some of the laughter bug. Laughing is contagious. Good Luck! I didn't mean to downplay your situation. Honestly, I feel for you.. - 4/28/2012   11:21:00 PM
  • 228
    I take A Zumba class 3 days a week and a toning class 2 days a week. I love it. We all have so much fun and I have a few girls that keep me accountable. Whether you take classes or workout at home it is all exercise:) - 4/28/2012   9:35:24 AM
  • 227
    Everyone starts out looking like a beginner - we have all been the new person in class. But most of us "veterans" love to see a new face, and are just happy that you are out there, being active and working toward fitness. I don't really like cardio, so I take yoga and Pilates classes. I find the live instruction is great for getting the most out of the poses - they see you progress and always add on just a bit more challenge. Also, once I have paid for a class, I am too cheap not to attend. I do exercise with myyogaonline, and YouTube, but it is too easy to say "tomorrow" when there is no live instructor keeping tabs on me. Classes keep me moving! And the social part of it is great fun too! - 4/27/2012   11:23:37 PM
  • 226
    I forgot I do like Aqua fit but please No Zumba for me. I like lifting weights. - 4/26/2012   11:44:51 PM
  • 225
    I like working out by myself. I'm not a fan of fitness classes but I'm not knocking them either. I like DVDs and walking...by myself. It's my time. - 4/26/2012   11:41:58 PM
  • 224
    I love fitness classes! But I've always been able to laugh at myself. - 4/25/2012   8:17:04 PM
  • 223
    I reckon that most people wouldn't watch others because they will be so engaged in watching the fitness instructor and copy his/her moves. - 4/25/2012   8:31:24 AM
  • DEANK641
    222
    I take 3 different classes a week an if you would have known me before I started these classes you wouldnt have believed that I was the same person. I was very shy an backwards when it came to being in a crowded room full of strangers. Like everyone I would mess up continuely , but thank goodness I had wonderful instructors who saw my desire for change an they continue to work with me .So its been 1 year now an I have lost 35 pounds an 45 inches an still going an I love it, because it gave me courage to keep going when therewere times when I wanted to quit. - 4/25/2012   12:47:54 AM
  • STEPHMARIAH
    221
    I love my zumba instructor, I am so greatful for her. I forget my surrondings and just have fun!! - 4/24/2012   5:58:21 PM
  • HUDSONMH
    220
    I started bootcamp this month and will be signing up for the month of May. It was extremely difficult at first, but I managed to hang on in there. I had taken spin and kickboxing classes. I love performing with a positive group. I cant believe how fast the weight has come off. One Special K protein shake in the morning and one in the evening. Five small healthy meals. 1200-1500 calories per day and OMG I look great. - 4/24/2012   3:43:23 PM
  • YVIEG17
    219
    I have a free gym membership from my health insurance plan. I'm still not a big fan of working out on the machines alone because I feel self conscious that I'm not going to remember how to use them correctly. However, I will take group classes because of the support. Whether its your first time or you're a regular people in these classes are generally very helpful and nice. I love doing Zumba at least 3x a week. I am now trying other classes and enjoying them. Pilates mat is hard but I don't care anymore how I look when I'm struggling. That's the point. I should look like I'm trying. At the end of the day, I have found that no matter how silly I think I look, everyone else is battling the same fear. If you mess up, who cares? Laugh it off and keep on moving. - 4/24/2012   12:20:41 PM
  • 218
    Classes motivate me to actually do a hard workout rather than slacking as I sometimes do. I admit it, I can be prone to not working out as hard as I should on my own. Being there with an instructor ensures I am doing the workout right and keeping up, plus they change it up. Self-consciousness is common. I smile, try to laugh it off, and focus on doing things right. - 4/24/2012   10:00:08 AM
  • 217
    Although not currently, I have taken classes in martial arts & pilates (which I LOVE!). Also, last year I signed up for a 12-week Biggest Loser bootcamp. My only worry (not fear) is needing to go to the bathroom in the middle of the workout, or passing gas - hey, it happens. Other than that, it's just a convenience thing. - 4/24/2012   9:51:37 AM
  • 216
    I have had a hard time committing to a specific class time because I always had to coordinate childcare around it. I managed a step class for a few months but never felt like it was as hard a workout as I could do on my own. I have tried BodyPump and BodyFlow classes and liked them. I tried Zumba once and absolutely hated it -- it wasn't intimidation or cluelessness (I had to get over myself years ago doing musical theater -- I *know* I'm inept but I also know I'll get it as well as anyone eventually, and I also know that nobody's looking at me because they're all trying to sort themselves out as well), I just genuinely disliked the style. I enjoy spin classes but either the time is impossible for me to make or I'd rather be out on my real bicycle anyway. Now that my kids are older (and the kids' class is ending for the summer, so I don't have to time my workout around that, either) I might re-visit BodyPump. But I've had great success losing weight and meeting fitness goals on my own, so I'll probably stick to my standard, solitary approach. - 4/24/2012   9:17:07 AM
  • 215
    I take a Aqua Fitness class. Some teachers are more intense than others and I love the workout that I get. I have also really gotten into Zumba. I thought I would be self conscious about it and my coordination and size but once I was in class and there were 45 other people there, I realized all those people were too busy doing their own workout that they didn't have time to see how I was doing. Zumba has brought me a new level of confidence for sure! - 4/24/2012   12:34:33 AM
  • 214
    I do not attend classes. I prefer to workout on my own schedule. The author's attitude is admirable. Next time I do take a class, I will keep it in mind. - 4/23/2012   9:09:39 PM
  • 213
    I take Zumba 3 days/week and Afro Belly Boogie once a week. I've tried BodyPump and Strength Training once, but I didn't like them. I LOVE to dance, so I seldom miss a dance class. I work out on the circuit on my own and swim for muscle tone, so that I can go at my own pace.

    I started to Zumba at home first, but I became bored after awhile doing the same routines. When I joined a gym that offered it, I started to dance in the back of the class, but now I dance near the front whenever there's space available. I've been dancing for a long time, so I try to help others around me who are struggling. I'll also give folks a high 5 to encourage them also. I recommend that you jump right into a class and walk in place whenever you get tired, so that you keep your heart rate up. After awhile, you'll become a pro at it! - 4/23/2012   8:17:23 PM
  • 212
    I looveee to take classes. I take total strength, Zumba, and cardiokickboxing and the occassional step or pilates class. It is the best. You hear the music pumping and you are shaking your booty and before you know it, it's over and you are all sweaty. Of course some are more choreography challenged than others, but none of us walked in knowing how to do ANY class. So start in the corner or back if you need to and just do what you can, don't stop moving. Go at YOUR own pace and modify for your body issues. Sooner or later you will get it. No one is looking at you and thinking anything, believe me. If they are, so what. I see people in the back who are very heavy or advanced in age, and can barely do the steps and you know what I think? ( I'm no skinny minnie or spring chick either)I think how proud I am that they are here and doing something to get healthier! At the end of the day if you enjoy your physical fitness you will do it more often. Get addicted to something healthy! If you don't like the class, get a DVD and do it at home. But I work harder and have more fun at the group classes. We are all working hard on doing the steps right so we really don't notice too much of the mistakes of others, believe me! Those whose opinions matter won't mind and those who mind, their opinions don't matter, to me! - 4/23/2012   7:57:23 PM
  • 211
    I take a kick boxing class and have become completely addicted to it! I am absolutely covered in sweat when it's over. - 4/23/2012   7:03:40 PM
  • MIRANDA2112
    210
    I used to go to a weekly Senior's exercise class but gave it up when my husband became ill. I must go back to it again now that he has passed on. - 4/23/2012   5:50:49 PM
  • 209
    Oh yes, I definitely take classes & I love it! I take a step class regularly as well as a bootcamp class. When I first took the step class I strategically put myself towards the front of the class, not knowing what to expect, & low & behold, the music started & everyone was moving in coordination, except me. Boy! I thought, "what the heck"! However, I continued to go to the class & sooner rather than later, I got it. I love working out with others & the friendly chatter that we all have. - 4/23/2012   2:57:45 PM
  • 208
    I love Body Pump and Body Combat. And the good thing about Body Pump is that you don't have to be especially co-ordinated to do it and get results! - 4/23/2012   1:21:13 PM
  • 207
    I belong the the YMCA. I take SPIN, Which I just stated a few months ago and now love. I also take Plyo power and love that too!! Sometimes I do zumba and the bootcamp!! Both faves!! I swim on my own. Oh almost forgot I also do the water aerobics class!!! when at home I will do pilates with the on damand!! - 4/23/2012   12:52:42 PM
  • SMIDGE1971
    206
    I joined a gym this winter too. At first I just used the treadmill and weight machines, but now I've worked up to taking classes 4 days a week. I take a Zumba class once a week (only offered once when I can go) and a Step N' Sculpt class three days a week. I love both of them. I tend to stay toward the back or middle of the class b/c this is the first time that I've taken them. I wouldn't worry too much about how you look b/c I've noticed that most people in my classes (especially my Zumba class) don't know the steps any more than anybody else (with the exception of a few people who are really good). What I like most about the Zumba class is that its fun and nobody really cares if you know the moves. The instructor is always saying that the most important thing is that you keep moving. I also did a cardio sculpt class and that was really good, but not nearly as much fun. - 4/23/2012   12:08:46 PM
  • 205
    I love my Body Pump class and I also spin and cardio kick. - 4/23/2012   11:31:23 AM
  • 204
    I love workout classes! My favorites are spinning, step, kickbox and circuit training. I have been a club member for a really long time, no place fancy but we all help each other out and try to motivate each other. Try to find classes where you have such an atmosphere and it will encourage you to do new things, good luck! :) - 4/23/2012   11:19:52 AM
  • 203
    No but I do go to a gym that offer them. They have trainers also but I dot not want to become the biggest loser and die in the process. LOL.. I like working at my now pace. Besides I am no dancer. I do aerobic walking with weights, treadmill, and spinning - 4/23/2012   10:52:39 AM
  • LQUEST4754
    202
    I really dislike Zumba as I am NOT a dancer. It is frustrating. The class that I really love and find to be very beneficial for strength and cardio is TRX Interval training. - 4/23/2012   6:31:20 AM
  • SUNSET09
    201
    They are my favorite way to work out as there as those that are better than you are as well as those not so much. It's a great way to start a relationship and many offer encouragement and assistance! It also offers the total workout! - 4/22/2012   4:14:37 PM
  • CHICA_BORICUA
    200
    Yes Pole Dance twice a day on Saturday and once on Sunday, really a good core workout. - 4/22/2012   1:57:03 PM
  • 199
    I love workout classes. I take Line Dancing, Zumba, muscle toning, Jazzercise and add others when I get bored. I'm usually the older woman, but who cares!!! I'm doing it with some of my own style. - 4/22/2012   11:11:13 AM
  • 198
    There are so many videos on YouTube for Zumba, Kettlebells, etc. that I don't need to drive to a "class" to do them, but the gym does have a lot of them, so I could. - 4/22/2012   8:55:34 AM
  • 197
    I've formulated my response to this in a blog:

    www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_j
    ournal.asp?id=WARMSPRINGDAY
    - 4/22/2012   1:53:56 AM
  • 196
    I go to Body Combat, Body Step, and Body Pump. I am the oldest, the fattest, the slowest, and the weakest. I don't care. I keep going. I've never been kicked out. The instructors and fellow classmates are always incouraging. - 4/21/2012   11:10:23 PM
  • SBNORMAL
    195
    I am going to take a class so that it would help me focus. - 4/21/2012   10:33:39 PM
  • PAULAM53
    194
    I love classes-they force me to stay focued on my goal for the entire hour. If I were not in a class I would give up sooner. They also challenge me to do more than I would do on my own. Most instructors offer modifications as a rule but if you have issues (bad knees or back) let them know. - 4/21/2012   7:19:40 PM
  • 193
    Generally I have been a work from my living room kinda girl. Last summer I tried a Zumba class while on vacation. Just last week I signed up for a weekly class. LOVE the energy involved from working out with others. Can't wait til next week. - 4/21/2012   3:14:39 PM
  • 192
    I was all about working out at home because of lack of transportation and finances. Then I discovered I qualified for a free liesure pass to my city's fitness facilities and my scooter had the range to get to them. I have been a very long time fitness class exerciser, mostly in the water and that is by far the best place to start -no one can see missteps or stumbles in the water! I struggled with my very first DVD's to get the choreography right, just took so much practise before I finally became comfortable. With my multiple health issues I learned fast how to modify and the instructor would say look at me for low impact. When I started going to these facilities I tried ZUMBA, and step for the first time and at first it was a series of one fumble after another, but I was in great shape and soon got my body moving in the right directions once I learned the moves which are common and repeated frequently. Patience learning them first is required. Getting used to an instructor not speaking was especially difficult in ZUMBA and I still have missteps, but everyone else is concentrating so hard to keep up they don't notice what you are doing - 4/21/2012   1:51:07 PM
  • 191
    Do you take any workout classes? Yes, my work place offers fitness classes.

    If so, which workout classes are your favorite? Zumba is the most fun, Strength is my most needed. I take yoga, too, don't enjoy it so much, but do it because it is good for me.

    Have you been (or are you) scared or nervous to take a workout class? Absolutely. I, too, need to modify a lot of exercises and I found it embarrassing at first when I couldn't do all the yoga poses or Zumba steps. I was afraid I wouldn't be able to keep up with the intensity of Zumba. The first time I walked into strength training class, the class before me was just finishing up doing reverse planks on one arm, lifting weights with the other. I almost turned around and walked out. I looked at the instructor, my eyes were probably like saucers. I said, "I can't do that." But she took me where I was at and is working with me. It was a big hurdle for me to cross to exercise in front of others.

    Do you have an recommendations on how to get over those feelings? Yes - just do it! And in hindsite, I would recommend trying to talk to your instructor ahead of the first session. If they don't initiate questions about you and your situation, tell them. Tell them where you are on your journey, tell them your goals, tell them any hindrances or physical limitations you have, even simple things like arthritis, cranky knees, torn rotator cuff, etc. Ask them to feel free to tell you modifications that you can do if you find a pose or particular exercise too challenging. Be open - they will likely be open back with you and you will get more out of the classes. - 4/21/2012   1:46:39 PM
  • NURSEMALLON
    190
    Kettlebells, Zumba, and Spinning ~ since I have taken classses like these at our local Y - I don't even go back into the regular part of the Y to workout. So boring in there! I get a much better and challenging workout in class! No one watches you in class because everyone is busy trying to do it themselves! LOL! - 4/21/2012   1:08:13 PM

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