Diversity Woman Magazine

SUM 2016

Leadership and Executive Development for women of all races, cultures and backgrounds

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40 D I V E R S I T Y W O M A N S u m m e r 2 0 1 6 d i v e r s i t y w o m a n . c o m are carefully sequenced for a safe, efec- tive, and well-rounded workout and have the same basic structure: warm-up, ft- ness, and cooldown—elements that you might skip on your own. Good instructors have been trained well and know how to provide modifcations or adjust the class level according to who shows up. "Instructors are providing an experience and a service," says Ellis. She also notes that you shouldn't be shy about introducing yourself to the teacher or ask- ing questions. "Tat's our job, to get to know you," she says. All these supports lead to greater ad- herence. One study showed that among two groups of exercisers, the group led by an exercise professional had a higher at- tendance and a lower dropout rate. Combatting boredom Perhaps most important, group classes provide a level of diversity to combat the No. 1 enemy of working out: boredom. "A lot of times, people don't follow through with ftness regimens because they get bored easily," says Ellis. The sheer variety of group classes, instructors, and settings can make all the diference between pulling on your work- out leggings or heading for the couch. With the options to go spinning on Mon- day, conditioning on Tuesday, and weight training on Wednesday, group classes help you stay interested while working out diferent parts of your body. In addition to having a menu of ftness classes to choose from, regulars at group classes know that there is often diversity within the same class. "If the instructor is doing a good job, she will change up some of the exercises and some of the music," says DeSimone. She compares it to cooking the same thing, but adding something new. "You might be having a steak again, but it tastes a little diferent with diferent seasoning." THINKSTOCKPHOTOS A little planning goes a long way Experts say that working out in a group class requires a little forethought. First, fgure out what you want to get out of a class, such as strength, relaxation, fex- ibility, or a cardio workout. Be honest about your ftness level and understand your limitations, whether you have asthma or a bum knee. Ten fnd a good match by doing a little research, reading class descriptions, and calling the stu- dio ahead of time to ask any questions. DeSimone advises taking a trial class or at least observing a class before making any big decisions, such as buying a class pass. Also, don't overdo it. "In a group class, you always do more than you would do on your own, but you also don't need some- body to beat you up," says DeSimone. "Ex- ercise is something you want to do for a lifetime, not something you want to sufer pain through. So give yourself some time to gradually improve your progress." DW Nora Isaacs is a freelance health writer and editor who lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. DW Life > Group classes provide a level of diversity to combat the No. 1 enemy of working out: boredom.

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