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Kristoph Thompson: “Should you take a virtual gym class?”

2 MIN READ • 7th August 2016

Our PT keeps us up to date with the latest fitness news and advice

The virtual class is one of the fastest growing trends within the fitness industry and is showing no signs of slowing down. And now a recent report has shed new light on the reasons behind this popularity and what motivates people to attend these kinds of sessions.

While it’s no surprise that women make up the largest proportion of participants, virtual classes seem to be more appealing to men than the live alternatives. The concept is proving most popular among those aged between 20 and 40 with more than two thirds of participants falling into the age bracket.

Cardio HIIT classes are the most well-used types of virtual classes with 56 percent of those questioned choosing them. Cycling was one of the least popular with only 20 percent taking part. The research also revealed that 30 to 45 minutes is the optimum duration for a virtual class.

The overriding reason for taking a virtual class was convenience, with 72 percent recognising the benefit of being able to take a class when it suits them. This immediately solved the problem cited by 60 percent of respondents about the difficulty of finding a live class to match their schedule. Being able to work at your own pace as well as having the opportunity to choose from a variety of classes were also common reasons for selecting virtual.

If you’re worried about decline of your favourite live classes, don’t be. With 37 percent of members preferring to combine live with virtual sessions the report paves the way for more choice in the group exercise offering. Virtual fitness company Wexer who conducted the study says virtual is a tool for experienced fitness users to vary and complement their training routine.
Source: Wexer Virtual Global Consumer Survey

Bite counting

The results from a recent study have suggested that counting the number of bites during a meal can be effective at countering the effect of the ‘mindless margin’ – the amount we eat without really thinking about it. Try counting the number of bites you take while eating lunch at home, paying particular attention to when you feel full. Then in those situations where you have no control over portion sizes, such as eating out a restaurant, aim for the same amount of bites. In these situations, factors such as the background environment and the size of the plate the food is served on can all result in you consuming more than you think.
Source: Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

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