Group Exercise Improves Performance - Now What?

October 15th, 2020

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, and many gyms and fitness centres remain closed, it’s important to acknowledge: it can be difficult to self-motivate to work out. This is not only because of gym closures, but because COVID-19 is limiting our ability to be around other people - and research shows that working out with other people can be one of the biggest motivators for fitness.

One of the biggest benefits of working out with other people is that it creates accountability. For this reason, working out with others creates consistency, because others notice when people don’t show up, contributing to a positive peer pressure. The numbers back this up. One study found that 95% of people who did a weight loss program as a group finished the program - as opposed to the mere 76% who did it alone.

Working out with people also encourages a healthy competitiveness. Studies show that, when planking with a more-capable exercise partner, people increase their planking time by 24%. It seems that the need to compete with whoever we’re partnered with actually raises our threshold for exercise, and can even double your workout time.

Furthermore, working out with others actually increases the endorphins that happen naturally when exercising! Those happy endorphins that cause that runner’s high are actually increased when you’re around other people. Another study shows that people who exercised with others were calmer after a thirty minute workout, and that they enjoyed the exercise more.

So it’s clear now that working out with others is a strong motivator and has many benefits when exercising. But how does that help in the middle of a pandemic? Gyms and fitness centres are, according to an NBC article, not yet safe to open. Recent research says that because of the nature of exercising, social distancing while running or cycling should be as much as fifteen feet between people.

That said, many fitness centres are finding ways to stay afloat by moving their instruction online. Yoga and dance studios are moving their classes online, as well as some personal trainers. Now more than ever, people are trying to connect with others online, including to motivate their fitness habits.

One way you can do this is through the Ergonomyx app. When you connect the app to our Smart Under-the-Desk Bike, you can track your distance pedalled, your calories burned, and you can compete against friends on the app. This can provide the motivation, and the friendly competition, that can be so difficult to cultivate in the middle of this pandemic, and help you maintain your fitness goals.

Health, fitness, and connection are all things that are more difficult to come by during the COVID-19 pandemic, so it’s important to find creative ways to foster all three. Explore our website for more ways to stay fit from your home.