Group workouts: Creative program ideas to keep everyone motivated

14 min read
Find out all about how group workouts can keep your members motivated and engaged.

Find out all about how group workouts can keep your members motivated and engaged.

Group workouts are a great way to stay motivated and have fun while exercising.

Did you know that when gyms offer group fitness workouts, they can see a surge in memberships? That's because group fitness exercises are a great way to get fit while meeting new people and having fun.

People doing a group fitness class at a gym.

So, whether you're just getting started with fitness group exercises or looking for fresh ideas, read on for inspiration!

Why your gym should provide group workouts

Group fitness classes offer a fun and social way to get fit. They provide motivation and support, and individuals benefit from being part of the team.

Furthermore, group workouts can encourage healthy competition, help participants stay motivated, and provide the social interaction often missing in solo exercise routines.

You can easily switch up the workouts to accommodate various fitness levels. To find out how fit your members are and create personalized training programs, you can run fitness assessments

Group workout benefits

As a gym owner, you understand the importance of offering an engaging and enjoyable fitness experience. 

Group workouts are a great way to provide this while giving your members the benefits of working out in a team environment.

Here are more benefits of group workouts:

Make new connections and expand your social circle

Group workouts are an ideal way to make and strengthen friendships. Not only can people with similar interests find each other, but they can also form a mutual support system while working towards their goals together.

It's not just about getting fit - it's also the perfect opportunity to connect with like-minded individuals and create new acquaintances!

Connects you with a network of support and community

Working out with a group provides an atmosphere of camaraderie and encouragement that can help anyone reach their fitness goals.

Having the extra support can make it easier to stay motivated and allow your members to push themselves further than if they were working out alone.

The group dynamics also allow everyone to bond and build relationships with one another, which will only help their progress.

Offers more challenges

Group workouts can be more challenging than a solo session, as members are driven to perform their best when around others. This type of atmosphere adds an extra layer of motivation that will help keep them on track and committed to achieving their fitness goals.

People at the gym doing a group kettlebells class.

Enables greater drive and responsibility

Group workouts provide an additional layer of motivation that will help keep your members on track and dedicated to reaching their fitness goals. 

Additionally, having the extra support of a team-based environment can make it easier for members to stay focused and push themselves further than if they were working out alone. 

Foster a thriving community with group workouts

Group workouts provide many advantages for your fitness business and your members.

Moreover, group training allows members to become part of a collective; this raises retention beyond fitness aspirations since their sense of belonging will keep them showing up each session and coming back for more.

Learn more: Group fitness business tips

It's up to you to create a thriving group fitness atmosphere at your gym. Here are some critical strategies for developing and sustaining a sense of community among members:

Elevate your service with personalization

Get to know your class members individually. It will build trust, make them feel appreciated, and help you bring everyone together. 

Once you establish regular members for the class, you could introduce a "member of the month" feature. Create a profile detailing their fitness progress so far at your studio. 

Add some information about their life outside of the gym; this can help members get to know each other better. 

Develop and offer group referral programs

Encourage members to introduce their friends and family to the group workouts by offering incentives or discounts for referring new members.

Inviting your members to participate in a "Bring A Friend Week" event is an excellent way to lessen their fear of attending classes alone. 

Allowing them to participate with someone they know makes participation much more inviting and comfortable! It's also beneficial for you as welcoming new faces can help increase membership numbers and attract even more interest in your offer.

This is a great way to spread the word about your classes and bring in more people who can benefit from the unique advantages of working out in a team environment.

Learn more: How to run a referral program for your fitness business

Leverage social media

Social media is a great way to build and maintain relationships with your members. Let them know about upcoming events and special offers and provide advice.

This will help keep them informed and up-to-date on all the awesome things that are going on at your gym. It also helps create an online community where members can share their experiences, successes, and struggles.

Friends at the gym taking a selfie.

Encourage friendly competition

Friendly competition is a great way to get the most out of your group workouts. Setting up a challenge among members will drive them to reach their goals faster and give them something fun to strive for that everyone in the class can benefit from.

Whether a nutrition challenge or an exercise competition, it will create an atmosphere of friendly rivalry that will keep your members motivated and engaged.

How to plan a group workout

Make your next gym workouts exciting and invigorating with a group exercise session! Group fitness activities can be entertaining while also providing an intense challenge. 

Additionally, it's the perfect opportunity to get better to know other members of your health club. While planning this type of class or session, there are some essential points that you should consider for everyone to have fun and feel successful in the end.

Decide the proper group workout activities

Before starting a group workout, deciding which activity suits your customers is essential. For instance, if most of your members favor running, then organizing a run around the gym would be ideal. 

Nonetheless, there are plenty of other choices available as well. From exercising and dancing together to participating in fitness classes - let your creativity shine through and offer something unique!

Designing a fun and effective group workout routine

To ensure a top-notch experience, strive to maintain classes at an optimal 6:1 member-to-trainer ratio. 

An efficient setup for group workouts aids coaches in getting the most out of members and equips them with the fundamentals necessary to advance their training later on.

For example, high-intensity interval training (HIIT) often follows timed intervals as it's an excellent way to get everyone energetically working up a sweat while simultaneously keeping exercise stimulating and pleasurable. 

However, this wouldn't be optimum for teaching more advanced methods and skills.

To effectively teach these techniques, try out a format where members take their time and carefully move through each movement consistently. This will help them comprehend the technique and ensure they perform it correctly.

Choosing the right coaches

Regarding instructors, only some can coordinate large groups; group exercise is a whole other ballgame compared to personal training. 

It's essential that the trainers can manage an amalgamation of fitness levels and handle any unexpected situations! Furthermore, ensure your trainers have the proper fitness certifications.

If you want to be at the front teaching yourself, ensure you're confident in your ability before doing so. 

On the other hand, if someone else will be teaching the group sessions for you, it's a good idea to have them do a trial class to assess their skills.

To become a confident instructor, practice is vital. To gain insight into teaching a practical course, sign up for different classes to observe and learn from the instructors.

Maximize your performance with the right warm-up and cool-down routine

Gym members must ensure everyone is on the same page before beginning any group exercise class because a workout will only be as successful as its participants. 

Before the class, spend about five to ten minutes preparing your members for their upcoming workout with a dynamic warm-up. 

Aim to loosen up muscles that will be used most throughout the class and check if any of your participants have existing injuries or tightness in specific areas. For example, using foam rollers during this time can help ease tension in those problem areas.

Next, your members may spend most of their day sitting, causing tension in the spine and knees. Therefore, it is crucial to incorporate movements that stretch and lengthen these muscles, such as backbends or hamstring stretches. 

Furthermore, while sedentary activities can be common among people, adding exercises with the full range of motion instead helps encourage joint mobility; even a simple exercise such as jump squats will do wonders!

Above all else, have fun and stay safe when exercising together! Always warm your body before starting the session, and remember to cool down afterward. 

5 procedures to keep in mind when creating group workouts

Group workouts are a great way to get in shape and have fun, but you must keep certain things in mind before organizing one.

Reserve adequate space for the group

Make sure to reserve ample enough space. Even better if you can find gyms that allow you to book online

For example, if you are planning a group HIIT workout, each participant needs at least 6 feet of space to perform exercises. 

If the group is too large for one room, consider reserving two rooms or breaking them down into smaller groups.

Check equipment availability

It's important to have adequate equipment available for your class size. Make sure to factor in how many sets of dumbbells, resistance bands, or other equipment you need for the class and have enough for everyone.

Dumbbells at the gym

Find out when your members are available

It's important to determine a suitable time for the entire group to work together. If this proves impossible, you may need to alternate between group members throughout each workout session.

Provide suitable group workout program ideas

Next, developing group workout program ideas suitable for your group size and fitness level is essential. 

If the group is primarily beginner-level, choose easier-to-learn exercises. If the group is more advanced, opt for more challenging exercises. 

Group workout program ideas include circuit training, HIIT workouts, partner drills, and more. Just make sure to keep it exciting and fun!

Be sure to have fun

There is no denying the benefits of group workouts. It can be a great way to get in shape, have fun, and stay motivated. 

However, one must plan for an enjoyable yet effective workout that everyone involved will enjoy - after all, it's meant to be a pleasant experience! 

To ensure satisfaction from your group activity, take into account each person's fitness level as well as their interests. 

The possibilities are endless, so make sure you find something that suits everybody's needs; by doing this, you'll create a positive atmosphere where everyone can thrive and reach new heights together! 

4 gym workout program ideas

Ready to get your group motivated and energized? Look no further - these four workout programs are guaranteed to kickstart a routine that fits everyone's needs! 

With a range of workouts available, you're sure to find something perfect for your team.

High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)

High-Intensity Interval Training, or HIIT for short, is a type of cardio workout that alternates between short periods of high-intensity exercise and brief rest periods. 

HIIT workouts are typically shorter than traditional cardio workouts, but they are much more intense.

Athletes often use HIIT workouts to improve their speed, agility, and power. However, HIIT workouts can benefit anyone looking to improve their cardiovascular fitness.

How can members do a HIIT workout?

Members can do a HIIT workout by alternating between sprinting, cycling, or rowing at maximum intensity for 30 to 45 seconds. 

After the exercise is completed, rest for 10 to 15 seconds before repeating the same exercise.

Circuit training

Circuit training is an intense full-body workout that combines strength and cardio exercises. It involves performing a series of exercises that target different muscle groups one after the other, usually with no rest in between each exercise.

Circuit training builds strength, burns calories, and improves overall fitness.

How can members do circuit training?

Members can do circuit training by creating their routine or following pre-made programs. Each exercise should be done for 30 seconds to 1 minute and followed immediately by the next exercise with minimal rest. 

Group circuit training is excellent because it encourages support and camaraderie among members.

People doing circuit training at the gym.

Strength training

Strength training builds muscle strength and endurance through resistance and weight training. Strength training can improve physical performance, reduce stress and help prevent injuries.

How can members do strength training?

Members can do strength training by using various exercises, such as squats, deadlifts, lunges, and push-ups. Each member must perform the exercises with proper form to ensure correct technique and maximum results.


Pilates is a low-impact exercise that focuses on core strength and stability, as well as flexibility and range of motion. It is excellent for injury prevention and rehabilitation.

How can members do Pilates?

Members can do Pilates by following a program created by a certified pilates instructor. Each exercise should be completed with proper form and technique, and there should be an emphasis on controlling the movements to get the most out of each exercise. 

Group Pilates classes are great for supporting each other throughout the workout, and can also be tailored to each person's individual needs and limitations.

No matter what type of group workouts program you choose, it's important to remember that everyone has different fitness levels and goals - so make sure to create an inclusive environment that encourages participation from all members! 

Frequently asked questions on group workouts program ideas

How do I create a group exercise program?

Creating a group workouts program can be broken down into the following steps:

  1. Decide on the type of group workouts program you want to offer (e.g., HIIT, Circuit Training, Strength Training, Pilates)
  2. Design a workout routine that includes exercises appropriate for your group's fitness level
  3. Set specific goals for each session and ensure everyone is aware of them
  4. Ensure that all participants are properly supervised throughout the group workouts program
  5. Make sure to give breaks between sets, if necessary, and keep an eye out for signs of fatigue or injury
  6. Encourage and support each participant to reach their goals
  7. Celebrate successes and recognize individual achievements!
  8. Review the group workouts program regularly and make adjustments as needed

How do you make a group fitness class fun?

Making group workouts fun and engaging can be broken down into the following steps:

  1. Set realistic expectations for each session's goals
  2. Incorporate different types of exercises that will challenge all participants
  3. Add music to create a more upbeat atmosphere
  4. Encourage participants to cheer each other on
  5. Incorporate team-building activities that get everyone moving and laughing
  6. Change the group workouts program often - keep it fresh and exciting!
  7. Invite feedback from group members, so everyone knows their opinion is valued
  8. Provide incentives and rewards that recognize milestones
  9. Allow group members to take turns leading group workouts
  10. Celebrate successes together and make sure everyone feels included in the group workouts program

What is the most popular group exercise class?

The most popular group workout programs are: 

  1. HIIT classes - High-Intensity Interval Training combines short bursts of intense exercise with rest periods
  2. Circuit training classes - these combine strength and cardio exercise into one workout
  3. Group strength training classes - designed to improve muscular endurance, coordination, and agility
  4. Group Pilates classes - focused on improving flexibility, balance, and posture through controlled movements
  5. Group dance classes - incorporate fun, high-energy moves with different styles of music

What makes a good group exercise class?

A good group workout program should include the following elements:

  1. Various exercises that challenge everyone - regardless of their experience and fitness level
  2. Exercises that focus on improving core strength, balance, coordination, and agility
  3. Clear goals for each session with measurable progress made by the group
  4. A safe environment where group members are properly supervised at all times
  5. Proper rest periods between sets to prevent fatigue and injury
  6. Group motivation to encourage each group member to reach their individual goals
  7. Group recognition for successes achieved during the group workouts program

What are examples of group exercise?

Group exercise can include any physical activity that involves group members working together. Examples of group workout programs could include: 

  1. Group cardio classes - designed to help participants reach their fitness goals quickly and efficiently
  2. Group Yoga classes - a blend of physical and mental exercises that improve strength, flexibility, and balance
  3. Group balance classes - teaches participants how to improve their stability and coordination through various movements
  4. Group Kickboxing classes - an intense full-body workout with punching and kicking moves set to music

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