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Throwback Thursday: Tips for Fitness Class Newbies

  • August 20, 2015
  • By Brittany
Throwback Thursday: Tips for Fitness Class Newbies

Hi friends!  How are you today?  I’ve been enjoying some lovely weather here back in good ol’ Brazil!  Welcome to Throwback Thursday!  I’ve got a good one that I dug out from the vaults last year.  Hope you enjoy!
If you’ve been here for awhile, you know that I love love love fitness classes.  I live and breathe to find the next great class in this city that never sleeps.   But not everyone shares my enthusiasm for the group fitness scene.  In fact, it can be downright intimidating.  So I have put together a few tips to make taking the plunge a lot easier because, trust me, group fitness is so much fun!

fitness class newbies.jpg

1.) Do a little research before you go.  Just because you’ve heard tabata is the latest fitness craze doesn’t mean you should just jump on the bandwagon.  Before signing up for a class, do a little research on what type of class you’ll be attending.  Is it cardio, strength, flexibility or mind-body?  What level of fitness experience do you need to take this class?  Is there a beginner’s class you should try first?  The easiest way to get this information is to check the website, observe a class if you can, ask a friend or just call the studio. Someone should be more than happy to point you in the right direction.

Zumba mC 2
2). Arrive prepared.  As part of your research, find out what you need for the class before you go.  Maybe long pants will be uncomfortable for that hot yoga class.  Most barre classes require socks.  And please make sure you have sneakers if you plan on doing cardio.  Also, check to see if you need to bring water or if it is complimentary or available for purchase.  Also check on the locker situation so you know if any are available and if you need your own lock.  Otherwise leave your valuables at home.
3) Invite a friend.  I hate walking into a room not knowing anyone and I especially hate it when all eyes are on me (which they probably aren’t but it feels that way!).  If you get nervous trying new things or going to a new place, ask a friend to join you.  I’ve been to tons of classes with friends wanting to try it for the first time.  I’m more than willing to go and show them the ropes.  By the same token, I’m always grateful when’s friend agrees to go with me to a new class. Strength in numbers!

4) Tell the instructor you are new and if you have any injuries. This is a big one.  A lot of instructors will ask at the beginning of class but in case they don’t or you are too shy to raise your hand in front of everyone (I hate doing that), just let the instructor know by going up to them before class starts.  If the instructor is unaware there is a new person in the class, they may spend less time explaining the basics and cueing proper form since they may assume everyone has been there before.  It’s also a good idea to let the instructor know if you have any injuries or other conditions so they can suggest modifications or stay away from pushing you too hard if you need to pull back.

5) Don’t stand at the back.  This one sounds counterintuitive but you are really doing yourself a disservice by standing in the back.  You most likely will not be able to see the instructor that well, not will you have a great view of yourself in the mirror.  And let’s be honest, we all want to check ourselves out in the mirror.  Seriously, checking your form and making sure you are mimicking the instructor is important!  While you don’t need to be front and center, I recommend the second or third row.  You’ll have a good view of the instructor and you’ll most likely have the benefit of class regulars in front of you, which can be great for motivation and to help you follow along.

6) Listen to the music. One of the best parts about group classes besides the group mentality is the music.  A lot of classes are specifically choreographed to the music and it is really enjoyable.  Just relax and listen to the music!

7). Don’t take yourself too seriously. This is probably the most important tip I can give.  It’s just a fitness class not the SATs.  Relax and enjoy yourself.  These classes are supposed to make fitness fun!  Don’t worry if you can’t get all the moves and you don’t look like a rockstar, like most things, it takes time to build the coordination and muscle memory required to excel.  Just enjoy the moment!

Readers,  are you a fitness class junkie or do you shy away from studios?  What are your tips for your first fitness class?  What’s your favorite class?


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By Brittany, August 20, 2015
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