How working out with a friend can make fitness classes better

Going to a gym class for the first time can be daunting. If you feel scared or apprehensive about attending a fitness class alone, you’re not the only one. We’ve put together this practical guide to let you know how bringing a friend along can help.

Classes provide a routine and workout structure that can be difficult to maintain on your own. But working out with strangers is very different from working out with someone you already know.

Bringing a friend to classes means you’ll have all the benefits of a class, plus the additional support of your gym buddy. Here’s a few reasons why having a dedicated gym buddy can help you get even more out of your classes:

1. Feel more comfortable

Gym anxiety, or “gymtimidation” is a real thing. 

Feeling like you don’t know what you’re doing, where you’re going, or worrying about how you look in the gym are all common reasons people give for avoiding working out in public.

By bringing a friend along to your first class, you’re both in the same boat. You’ll feel more comfortable with someone you know, and you’ll have a friend in your corner to calm you down if you’re nervous before you go in.

Whether they come back or not, going to your first session with a friend is a great way to calm your nerves. You’ll quickly find that there’s nothing to worry about and you’ll feel more confident about going alone in the future.

2. Added motivation

We all have days when we want to switch off the alarm clock and roll over. The thought of a fitness class after a long day at work might be the last thing on your mind as you leave the office.

Having a friend to workout or attend classes with means you’re less likely to bail on a session. Not wanting to let someone down is a powerful motivator and is great for keeping you on the right track, even when you really don’t feel like it.

Also, once you’re in the class, seeing your friend work hard can be the push you need to keep going.

3. Accountability

Accountability is closely linked to outside motivation. If there’s someone relying on us or checking in on us, we’re more likely to keep going. 

When we feel like skipping a class or avoiding the gym, accountability is what keeps us going. Having a friend around who’s relying on you can be the difference between not going to the gym and getting a great workout in.

4. Double the fun

Your friends know you and your sense of humour better than anyone. Exercise should be fun, and doing it with friends is the surest way to make fun happen.

Having someone to have a laugh and a joke with helps take the sting out of your first session and means you’ll feel more relaxed about coming back in the future. 

5. You’re never without a partner

Some classes will have you partner up for certain exercises. 

Going to class with a friend means you’re never left nervously looking for someone to pair up with. This can be daunting if it’s your first time and you feel like everyone else knows each other. 

Over time, you’ll get to know the people in your class better and you won't have to worry about these awkward moments anymore.

6. Your own personal spotter

Spotting is all about safety and recognising and correcting the form of someone else whilst they exercise. Plus, having someone to bounce ideas off is always a plus.

Whilst your partner might not be a professional, they can help you with little bits and pieces whilst the instructor is busy. Alternatively, you can an extra set of eyes to help your partner out if there’s something they’re not sure about. 

Taking a partner to classes helps make sure you’re both performing the exercises to the best of your abilities and getting the most from your workout.

7. Combining skills

We all have different strengths, but we’re stronger together. 

Two minds are also more creative than one. You and your friend can come up with new and interesting workout routines, keeping your exercise regimen fresh and engaging.

Last updated Monday 11 December 2023

First published on Tuesday 7 August 2018