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Exercise Classes Versus Personal Training, What's the Verdict?

Firstly seeing as it's my first post of the year, Happy New Year and welcome to 2020! I hope you all had a lovely relaxing Christmas and New Year and break. I can't believe it's 2020, 2000 feels like only just yesterday when Sydney

Having a personal training session or booking into a group exercise class can be a great way to get your motivation back and keep you accountable when you are just starting out training or after a prolonged period or not training.

So when it comes to exercise, are Personal one-on-one sessions or group exercise classes better?

Below i take a look at the pros and cons of both and weigh in with what i think.

Group Exercise Classes


1. Cost effective - Group classes can be substantially cheaper than doing one-on-one sessions with a Personal Trainer with group classes averaging out at ardour $25 - $35 whereas a PT could be between $100 - $150 per hour.

2. Variety - As opposed to a Personal Trainer who might be specialised in a certain area, doing group fitness classes allow you to experience a whole variety of training styles and workouts. You could try swimming one day, boxing the next, yoga or pilates the following so it really allows you to mix up your training style and see what type of training you like.

3. Accountability - Organising to meet one of your friends at an exercise class adds that extra bit of accountability so that when you wake up in the morning and don't feel like going, you know you are meeting one of your friends there so you wouldn't want to let them down and cancel on them.

4. Push yourself harder - Workout in a group can also provide that bit of an extra push that you might not get if you went to the gym by yourself. Seeing other people working hard and pushing themselves is likely going to give you that motivation want to keep pushing and going when you are feeling fatigued.

5. No excuse for the weather - As most group classes are conducted inside, be it hot, cold, windy, rainy, the weather doesn't have a bearing on it so will be pleasant conditions no matter what it is like outside.


1. No individual attention - If you are new to a particular exercise style or class, going to a group class you are unable to get individual attention as the instructor has to be looking at everyone in the class so it's harder to ask questions if you have any.

2. Increased risk of Injury - With the aforementioned above, not being able to have that individual attention leads to greater risk of injury if you are unsure of how to correctly do an exercise or particular move. I all too often see this in group classes, one or a few people struggling with a move and the instructor not being able to get around to everyone before having to move on.

3. Self conscious - Going to a class that you've never been too before and feeling like you don't know what you're doing can definitely make you feel self conscious. If you look around and everyone else looks like they are pros at it and knows what they are doing can be one of the biggest turn offs from going back to that class again. or still from trying other fitness classes as you don't want to feel like that.

Personal Training


1. Individualised attention - You are paying a personal trainer to do just that. Create a personalised program tailored to your goals and needs and give you Personal advice and guidance throughout your session. They should be completely focused on you the whole time and be competent and able to inform you of correct technique and adjust your positioning correctly when required.

2. Get a personalised program tailored to your goals - Working with a personal trainer you are more likely to reach your health, fitness and strength goals as they can specifically tailor something to what you are wanting to achieve. Someone wanting to put on muscle needs a different program and type of training than someone wanting to lose body fat or someone wanting to just tone. Having that program designed specifically for you is going to ensure that you reach your goals.

3. Build a good relationship with your instructor- Having a good relationship with your Personal Trainer is very important. Especially for females, our bodies go through so much each month and change dramatically day to day, so you have to be able to be honest with your trainer and say I'm not feeling the best today, I want to train but just not as hard and they should be able to adapt and adjust the session accordingly.

4. Accountability - most Personal Trainers will have cancellation policies that inhibit you from cancelling usually less than 12 or 24 hours prior unless under extreme circumstances. Having to forego the cost of the Personal Training session should you just decide to not go, is going to be a good motivator and accountability tool to making sure that you turn up.

5. Understanding the gym - the gym especially the weights room, can be quite daunting when you step in there for the first time. Having a qualified Personal Trainer to show you around and design an exercise program for you is going to be one of the best ways to ensure that you are maximising your time efficiently and effectively while you are there.


1. Cost - Compared to a group training session, Personal Training can cost double or triple the price. However with that cost you are paying for that trainer's extra expertise as it requires more study and practice to become a personal trainer compared to a group fitness instructor. As highlighted above, you are also paying for them to create a program individualised to your goals and needs and to ensure that you reach those goals.

2. It's not for everyone - Personal Training can seem daunting for some people, not knowing what to expect and thinking that it's going to be harder than it is. Some people just like to go to group fitness classes and just blend in and not have someone's whole attention focused on them and pushing them for an hour.

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