Large group classes compared to small group training

This article is a comparison of large group fitness classes and small group training sessions to help you understand the difference and decide which format suits you best.

the general differences between large group fitness and small group training?

The main difference between large group fitness classes and small group personal training is the level of individual attention and customization.

In large group classes, the workout is typically designed to accommodate a broad range of fitness levels, and there may be limited opportunity for personalized instruction or modification.

With small group personal training, the trainer can tailor the workout to the specific needs and goals of each participant, providing more individual attention and guidance.

Additionally, small group training tends to be more intimate and supportive, with participants working closely together to achieve their fitness goals.

what a trainer says about large group vs. small group training

The description above definitely highlights the basic differences between large group fitness and small group training. These differences are important but I’m going to attempt to go a little deeper into the differences I’ve found having participated and taught both formats myself.

Are you there for the experience or the results?

If you’re like me, you said “both“. However, there’s always a trade off.

Large group fitness is a volume model while small group training is a quality model.

This means that large group fitness tries to attract as many people to their classes as possible. The more people the more revenue they can bring in while still keeping their prices affordable.

Small group training usually caps attendance at 5-6 clients per trainer. This keeps the quality of training high but also forces the price per session to be more expensive than large group.

In order to attract a lot of customers, large group fitness puts a heavy emphasis on the experience everyone gets when attending a class. Things like attractive and energetic instructors mixed with cool lights and thumping music make for an overall concert like experience. There’s nothing wrong with this btw. All of these things add to a great experience that keeps people coming back and bringing their friends.

The trade off of focusing so much on the member experience is that it can take away from the members results. Entertainment can add fun to a workout but it can also be a distraction.

a small group of women exercising with their personal trainer

On the other hand, small group training prioritizes quality. It is a results driven business model that adds a little fun and energy to the experience.

This way the members are getting a lot of what they need and a little of what they want. Results can be measured and adjustments can be made to an individuals program if necessary.

The tradeoff here is that not everyone wants to focus so heavily on their workouts. A lot of people prefer to make it as simple as possible.

So which is better?

Well… it depends.

It depends most on what you want to get out of the time you dedicate to your fitness and what your goals are.

Large group fitness will typically provide a fun and energetic experience along with a great workout.

Small group personal training is going to help you accomplish specific fitness goals in a fun and motivated environment.

In my opinion, most people would benefit from doing a majority of their training in a small group setting while adding a large group fitness class in every week or so.

This way you are spending more time working on your specific needs and adding in some fun workouts that also align with your goals.

Want to know what the best type of training is for your fitness goals?

Schedule a complimentary consultation where we can talk about your goals, your specific road blocks, and workout a roadmap of how to accomplish your goals as efficiently as possible.

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