You’ve probably heard the expression ‘everybody has to start somewhere’ and I’m here to tell you, it couldn’t be truer. There really is a first time for everything and your first time trying something new in the gym, like a group fitness class, can be a nerve-wracking experience.
Every single person there has been the ‘newbie’. They have been less fit than they are right now. So if we know this already, that everyone has to start somewhere, why is it so flipping hard to work up the courage and get stuck in?
Like many, I once found myself with a burning desire to get in shape. But without the funds for a personal trainer, or the complete collection of Jane Fonda workouts, I realised it certainly wasn’t going to happen at home. So I finally struck up the nerve to go along to a group fitness class at the gym – and I fell in love!
To help you fall in love with group fitness too, I’ve shared a few tricks for building the confidence to give it a go:
Arrive early so you can speak to the instructor (on the down low!). Don’t be afraid to let them know you are new. They can talk to you about what to expect, show you how to set up and discuss any injury concerns you might have.
As tempting as it is to stake your claim to the back corner, being closer to the very middle of the room can actually help you see what’s going on from a 360 degree view. With people all around you, whichever way you all turn, you will have a clear view of the person next to you and won’t need to strain your neck to see the instructor.
Remember to copy the instructor as if they are your mirror. This might sound really obvious but wow, was I confused in my very first class! As silly as it sounds, this advice might come in handy when moving sideways to avoid crashing into the person next to you (although it’s definitely a great ice breaker).
Don’t spend too much time picking out the perfect matching outfit. After a few classes, you’ll learn that us group fitness regulars are the most mismatched bunch of fluoro-loving people you have ever met. Knee-high socks, sparkly shorts and head bands are completely acceptable, and often encouraged. So too are Santa hats and elf ears come Christmas time.
At the end of day, it’s important to remember we’re all there for the same reason; to get fit and have fun. So go on, try something new and have fun doing it!