Poll: Do You Take Workout Classes?

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By: , SparkPeople Blogger
4/19/2012 2:00 PM   :  273 comments   :  19,131 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

  • 273
    I love the core and abs class, step and spin. - 8/26/2014   1:54:32 PM
  • 272
    I understand about the nervousness, so I will read about the benefits of the class. I talk myself into going because I want these benefits=) My favorites classes are BodyPump and Aqua Zumba--I too am uncoordinated, so I don't do Zumba, but AquaZumba is fun cause it's in the water. Make a deal with yourself to try 1 new class a month, and if you don't like it you don't have to go back--but at least you tried=)
    - 8/18/2014   7:50:32 PM
  • 271
    I love my Pilates class and try to go twice a week. Last week, however, I was embarrassed and actually got laughed at for doing something really awkward because I couldn't hear and I couldn't see the instructor. It was kind of funny and they were trying to be nice and make it better but I was being sensitive and it hit me wrong. It's taking some time to get over it and tomorrow will be my first day back at class since it happened. Yes, I'm going back because I've been going to that class for over a year and love how much it's helped me in so many ways. I don't want to ruin it for myself. I am not a workout class person either and I HATE being embarrassed. I am horribly uncoordinated and can never follow moves. :-( Anyway, my plan is to move to a different location in the class so I can see and hear better. I even already talked (via email) to the instructor about it. I don't think she really understands how it hit me because she's just got a thicker skin than I have but at least I addressed it and I am moving forward and not letting it ruin things for me.
    Sure, I'll probably be a bit different than I had been before but I think I'll eventually get over it. I wish these things didn't bother me so much, but they do.
    So, despite being embarrassed in class, I am still going to go - FOR ME!! :-) - 8/18/2014   3:46:46 PM
  • 270
    I generally take a Spin class on Sundays, Step aerobics on Mondays, PiYo on Wednesdays, yoga on Fridays, and Zumba on Saturdays. I love classes. :)

    I need to do more weight lifting, which I do on Tuesdays, and think I might trade out Friday yoga for weights. I don't like the weightlifting class, I prefer to do it on my own. - 8/18/2014   3:01:20 PM
  • 269
    I Zumba 3 to 4 times out of the week. I also do body pump (weights) twice a week, Body Combat once a week and most recently U-jam once a week. I love the variety I get by taking the group classes. To be honest with you I believe no one is there to judge and everyone is to into just accomplishing a great workout. The group classes also help me stay motivated. - 8/18/2014   12:44:03 PM
  • 268
    I do two Aqua Fit classes a week, one Yoga class, and 1 -2 Urban Poling classes. Hoping to get in on a Zumba Gold class this fall. Eleanor Roosevelt said "You wouldn't worry so much about what others think of you if you realized how seldom they do. - So throw on your gear, and get moving! - 8/18/2014   12:34:06 PM
  • MAUDESTINE
    267
    Spinning classes... hard but I love them! - 8/18/2014   9:20:46 AM
  • 266
    When I was younger I went to the gym with my father. Someone there didn't like that a young kid was at the gym and was very rude to me. It made me even more self conscious and I quit going. As an adult I still had those feelings, as though I didn't belong or was doing it all wrong. I found going with a friend helped make those feelings to dissipate. You still feel goofy, but you're not alone. Perhaps taking a friend to your fitness class would help you to feel more comfortable. - 8/18/2014   8:18:42 AM
  • 265
    I go to seated Yoga and seated Weight & Balance classes four days a week, I also take a weekly Zumba Gold class. I wish there was a pool nearby that wasn't so highly chlorinated - can't breathe. - 8/18/2014   8:09:43 AM
  • 264
    I do a water aerobics class 3-4 Times per week. It is the best thing to do with arthritis, trying to stay in shape waiting for knee replacements. - 8/18/2014   7:55:58 AM
  • 263
    I do a zumba class once a week. I also do it at home. If you are scared about going to a class. Give yourself permission to do half hour or one evening, if you like it great, if not at least you got moving. Don't stop there, continue to look for something you do like. There are various kinds of videos on youtube. I hope this has helped. - 5/19/2014   7:45:48 PM
  • 262
    I LOVE workout classes. It's a completely different experience doing the class in person versus a video. I used to love step class, but ever since I did Zumba, that's my workout of choice. My instructor is an AMAZING dancer and she kicks our butt every time! I can't keep up yet or do some of the moves, but I just keep moving. Zumba makes my heart smile. - 5/19/2014   1:29:07 PM
  • KRYMZYNSTARR
    261
    I recently made the decision to stop making excuses and start exercising, no matter how much I felt like I couldn't or didn't want to. Feeling like I was too big to use the machines, and not enjoying the sound of the whirring of the treadmill under my weight, I opted to try some of the classes that my gym offered. Nervously, after memorizing the schedules for about 2 weeks, I bit the bullet and walked into my first class, Les Mills BodyPump. It was difficult, not gonna lie, but after it was all said and done, I felt exhausted, yet exhilarated. The instructor was helpful, offering options to moves, so that all fitness levels were accommodated. I now, take 3 classes a week, BodyPump, BodyFlow and CXWorX... with my fitness level getting stronger, I plan to try out more!! - 12/19/2013   3:52:25 PM
  • 260
    I go to at least 4 classes a week. I found an instructor whose teaching style I love and try to go to her all classes which include: Kickboxing, Zumba Toning and Zumba. I also go to boot camp. But need to find another strength. - 12/19/2013   10:13:11 AM
  • 259
    Even as a yoga teacher, I do group practice as a participant because it feels so good to get the group energy, even when you think you have no individual energy. This happened recently, and by the end of the practice, I had done poses that surprised me. I still remember what it was like to feel as though the hardest part of the practice was the Sun Salute warm-up (and there are times when that's still true); but I also have better confidence and calm because I kept going with yoga practice. Find your own "best activity". And enjoy! - 12/19/2013   5:46:27 AM
  • 258
    i take classes at my gym that are workouts for arms and legs and abs. i do them once a week. i like the trainer i work with he keeps the classes small and upbeat. he makes it fun and exciting to be there. he pushes me to try new workouts but he doesnt push so hard i end up in pain. i have a lot of medical and physical issues and he works around them. hes the reason ive lost 10 lbs this last month. i love the classes too because they tend to be the same people and its a wonderful support group. we talk about our lives our goals when we slip up how were doing weight loss wise. when i hit ten lbs i went and told the trainer and he was so proud he told everyone else and the other staff members. he still keeps going on about it and they all make me feel great for what i saw as a small accomplishment. - 12/11/2013   6:41:40 PM
  • 257
    I usually workout at home but when I do take a class it's zumba and it's a very depressing zumba class. It's not really upbeat and there are not many people in the class. I haven't taken many other classes because a lot of them a so hard. I usually stick to home workouts. - 12/6/2013   11:36:48 AM
  • 256
    I like Zumba. It's fun and even though I'm not as young or energetic as many others in the class, I can modify moves and just keep moving. The time goes by so fast it's hard that I had an hour workout. - 12/3/2013   9:37:18 AM
  • 255
    I take all that my gym offers. I found that fitness classes provide structure for me, and help me to get the best burn for the time allotted. I do much better with an instructor than on my own, plus attending a gym class is almost like having a personal trainer as most of the time (mine anyways) they always come around to answer questions and correct form. My favorites are body pump, zumba, body combat and cycling. - 12/3/2013   7:58:08 AM
  • PEACHEZ73
    254
    I love Zumba classes. Our instructor really kicks up the beat and adds a lot of strength exercises into the moves besides just dance moves. The hour goes by so fast. It's more like going to a "sweat party" rather than a gym workout. - 10/31/2013   1:27:55 PM
  • 253
    I take deep water aerobics classes. Once in the pool, no one can see what you do, except maybe the instructor standing on deck. I have physical limitations, and my balance isn't the best. The pool is safe for me. I get a GREAT workout. I have been eying a silver sneakers zumba class. It looks like fun, lots of folks are awkward,and most modify the workout. Not everyone in the class is a senior. I would fit right in. I have it on my goal list, as soon as the physical therapist says it safe for me to start the class. - 10/31/2013   7:37:12 AM
  • DAWN8378
    252
    I occasionally take classes for the variety it adds and the challenge. If I like it, I'll do it a few more times. If I don't, I try something new. I don't see the point in becoming frustrated, since I'm not commited to the class. - 6/22/2013   10:56:26 PM
  • 251
    I do at times. - 6/22/2013   9:18:50 PM
  • COUPONERVAL
    250
    Yoga and Zumba! - 5/12/2013   7:01:06 PM
  • FITNESS386
    249
    I take spinning, Zumba, hip hop cardio, kickboxing, and pilates classes. They are all super fun with some classes being more challenging than others but my cardio workouts are never dull. - 4/1/2013   8:05:22 PM
  • 248
    Yes, I love classes. Hate the machines.. boring! Zumba is my fav. Some are slow and some are taught by expert professional dancers. Just go at your pace. Let me tell you, I'm a veteran, but I always admire people who are doing it. There is a little old man who is at the back left side of our class and he does his best to do what we do, but when he can't he still works it. I am inspired by him and think it's great. I never think negatively of him or anyone else who has to modify the movement/intensity. I recommend staying a few rows back, behind the teacher at first so you can see what the teacher does and see the other folks and so you don't get trampled if it is a fast paced class. ALWAYS do it at your own level and pace and don't think "I can't do that, I should leave" think " I can do it this way, and I'm still burning calories and having fun" If anyone things bad of you, well, then they are not nice people and we don't care what they think do we?! Don't be scared, we were all in the back going slow at one time or another. I still do when a new teacher comes along. Also, none of us are watching you... we are all watching the teacher or trying to get it right ourselves.
    - 3/13/2013   7:21:35 PM
  • 247
    I take Zumba...I enjoy it. Some instructors are really good and make it easy to follow....some seem to be dancing in their own little world...yet others, you just don't feel comfortable with because they do the over the top smiling. Find one that you are comfortable with, that way you know you will keep going. One bad instructor should not make you give up. You can do it! - 1/8/2013   9:51:31 PM
  • 246
    I love the Latin dance classes at my gym, at first I was intimidated b/c I was usually the biggest girl in class, but I found that I'm still fairly coordinated (use to dance in high school many moons ago) and in time I was able to keep up with the instructor. I held off on joining the ballet class for same fear being biggest girl, but also I'm not physically able to do some of the moves yet...conquered that fear and the instructor was so nice and gave me and others modified moves.

    My gym must have had some feedback on this issue of the fear of taking a class, so they decided to give sample classes, I think they were 10-15 minutes each. I say go to the class a few minutes early let the instructor know that you're new, many will look out for you and make sure you don't stay lost for too long. - 1/7/2013   12:51:22 AM
  • BANNERMAN
    245
    No - 1/6/2013   4:47:50 PM
  • 244
    I have been a member of the Y for about 6 months. I started taking water classes and when those got too crowded are just hit the gym. Now that's getting too crowded, so I started trying different classes at different times to see if there were any I liked. I tried a cardio muscle class, and that kicked my butt. I've taken a yoga class, and look forward to it every friday night. So far I've done well in 1 class, and the other 2 have kicked my butt (they closed down the studio for a week to refurb the floor). Hoping to try new classes during the next few months. I'd really like to find a big open field I can run around and do cardio on my own without people staring at me. lol - 1/3/2013   8:17:42 PM
  • WHEELS54
    243
    Like many others, I have taken Zumba and yoga classes. They were OK. It is more convenient for me to do a video at home. Via youtube, I am teaching myself how to dance gangnam - just for fun and exercise. It's a hoot! - 1/3/2013   12:47:59 PM
  • 242
    I love the Les Mills classes--BodyPump, BodyAttack, CXWorks and watching others in the class motivates me to work my hardest. - 1/2/2013   4:52:17 PM
  • 241
    YES! I take zumba and it is a very important part of my fitness plan! If I can't get to zumba, I am sad. I also take a cardio tennis class once a week... what a great workout!!
    ONE NOTE to those who are worrying about how they look to others in the class - - for the most part NO ONE is watching you!
    As JOANNEJI says: "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." - 1/2/2013   4:46:50 PM
  • 240
    have long considered work out classes. Not sure of what class to take. Plus there is the overall fear of showing up and looking stupid. I think I will wait, until teh psot new years resolution rush dies down and consider a spinning course - 1/1/2013   9:30:05 AM
  • 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

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