10 Social Benefits Of Exercising
The physical health benefits of regular exercise are well known, ranging from increased strength to lower blood pressure to reduced risk of certain illnesses. But what are the non-physical benefits of exercise from a social perspective?
As the saying goes, there’s strength in numbers. When we work out as a group (no matter the size), there are certain social health benefits that follow, and we’re here to explore these benefits in detail.
Social Benefits of Exercising
The social benefits of exercise include a sense of community, boosted self-esteem, and increased empathy. In addition, better accountability, discipline, motivation, and goal-setting are all benefits you can expect when fitness becomes a part of your regular routine. We’ll elaborate on these benefits below:
If you commit to exercising with another person or a group of people, you’re more likely to follow through solely for the fact that you have others relying on you. This can include things like enlisting a gym buddy, committing to a group fitness class, playing team sports, and so on.
While some activities truly require you to show up for your partner or else they’ll be stranded (like committing to playing tennis, for example), oftentimes the simple act of promising a friend you’ll go to a Pilates class with them is enough to hold you accountable to your promise. The social obligation to show up and engage in some physical activity is a great benefit to increase accountability.
Compete with friends or other MIRROR members and challenge them to fitness face-offs in MIRROR’s competitive classes.
While exercising socially can increase your accountability, it can also result in long-term healthy habits and better discipline. When you get into a routine and stick to a schedule, this behavior becomes a habit, and prioritizing a healthy lifestyle becomes as natural as breathing.
“One more rep, come on, you got this” is something you won’t hear if you exercise on your own. Staying motivated to work out at home or on your own can be challenging.
When you exercise in a group, the environment can offer a great deal of motivation that pushes you to reach your goals and find your physical limits. From your instructor to fellow classmates, there will be people all around you to motivate and inspire you, offering words of encouragement to keep you going.
On the flip side, your attendance and performance in a social exercise setting are likely to inspire and motivate others as well. This is a domino effect that benefits everyone involved.
Learn from MIRROR instructors with our community camera during live classes. Get feedback on your form so you can correct your technique and get the most out of your workouts.
Exercising in a group setting results in a much different experience than exercising alone. This type of cohesive group atmosphere allows you to meet new, like-minded people with similar interests, which can lead to new friendships, an improved social life, and being surrounded by people who genuinely care about you and your wellbeing.
For example, meeting someone in a group fitness class who also shares a love for hiking can lead to a new hiking buddy and an enriched social life.
Being part of a community makes people feel safe, secure, and like they’re part of something greater than themselves. Research suggests that individuals who feel a sense of security, belonging, and trust in their community have better health.
See friends and other MIRROR members working out at the same time as you with our community camera. These live group sessions can help deepen your sense of community and get real-time feedback from instructors.
When you exercise, you enter into an environment that’s well known for being supportive and uplifting. Not only will you feel more self-confident from physical activity, but you’ll also start to feel good about yourself from the praise and words of encouragement from your instructor and fellow classmates. The positive results achieved from exercising, whether it’s jogging longer than you ever have or seeing muscular definition in your arms can have a big effect on your self-confidence and self-esteem as well.
Exercising increases the body’s production of endorphins—also known as “happy hormones”—which improve your overall mood and even your mental health. Taking that a step further, when you exercise in a group setting, you’ll be surrounded by people who are encouraging and uplifting. This type of positive energy leads to an improved mood simply by osmosis. Being around others who exude positive energy has a positive impact on your mood and undoubtedly lifts your spirits.
Receive shout-outs from your instructors during MIRROR’s live classes and exchange motivational messages with classmates through the MIRROR app.
7. Increases empathy
Another social health benefit of group exercise is increased empathy—for others and yourself. When you have a positive experience with someone from outside your close circle, a learning effect in the brain is triggered, which increases empathy and compassion. And when you have an inevitable bad day at the gym, you’ll learn to be kinder to yourself and accept those bad days as part of the process. This can have a profoundly positive effect on your ability to deal with conflict, negative emotions, and challenges of day-to-day life.
8. Improves interpersonal and communication skills
Did anyone else nearly forget how to interact with other human beings after the pandemic lockdowns? Or has working from home drastically reduced your interactions with other people? Exercising, especially in a group setting, allows you to tap into those communication and social skills once again.
While striking up a conversation with a stranger can be daunting, group fitness classes are some of the easiest ways to practice your communication skills if you tend to be shy. If you regularly attend a class (whether online or in-person), you’ll start to see the same people, making it easier for you to break the ice. Practicing these skills can eventually translate into your daily life.
9. Creates balance in your life
Whether it’s work, family, or other responsibilities and obligations, certain things can take up more of our time than others, which can cause an imbalance in our lives. Making time to exercise socially helps you establish a well-balanced life with the added bonus of improved physical and mental benefits.
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Get the Social Benefits of Exercising Without Leaving Your Home
You don’t need to leave the comfort of your home to reap the social health benefits of group exercise. With MIRROR, you can attend live group fitness classes like dance classes, yoga classes, boxing classes, bootcamps, and more and join hundreds of people from all over the world while you improve your social and physical health at the same time. If you’ve ever felt alone while working out at home, MIRROR eliminates that issue. When you join a live class, you can see all the users that are online as well, and MIRROR’s camera feature allows instructors to see you while you work out, shout you out, and correct your form in real-time.
When you join MIRROR, you join a thriving community with like-minded individuals. You can send motivational messages to friends through the MIRROR app, compete in friendly competitions with other users, discuss your favorite classes, or celebrate victories on MIRROR’s Facebook group with over 10,000 other MIRROR members across North America.
Get fit while you build your social health from the comfort of your own home.