Weight Loss

10 Ideas to Help You Create a Group Fitness Challenge

fitness challenge

80% of American adults don’t get the recommended amount of weekly exercise. This is because our busy lifestyles don’t prioritize time for activity. 

It is important for schools and corporations to implement changes that enable students and employees more time in their day to be active. This can be school athletics, walking meetings, or office step challenges.

These fitness challenge ideas are an excellent way to encourage an active lifestyle. Read below for ten ideas to help you create an effective group fitness challenge.

1. Create Teams

Everything is more fun with a little competition. Creating teams is one of the best ways to initiate small group training. In a corporate setting, building teams for an office fitness challenge forces employees to get to know one another.

This promotes camaraderie on and off the playing field. Be strategic about how you create the teams—pair marketing versus finance versus operations. 

Or place employees who barely know each other together, this gives them the chance to connect and bond. 

Teams are also useful for families, collegiate athletes, students, and more. The sportsmanship of athletics requires people to communicate and work together. 

2. Set a Goal

Mindlessly partaking in a fitness challenge makes it hard to work together. The definition of a team is “people who come together towards a common goal.”

Goals need to be measurable. So a fitness group goal shouldn’t be vague like “have fun” or “get fit” although those are things you’ll want to do.

Measurable fitness challenge goal examples include improving collective pace by one mile per hour or losing twenty pounds in two months as an office. 

3. Add Rewards

Not everyone is intrinsically motivated to partake in a fitness challenge. That’s where reward incentives come into play!

Rewards are an easy way to motivate people during fitness training. Rewards can be monetary or not and set at any budget. They can also be distributed to individuals or teams. 

We have some awesome reward ideas below. Do whatever matches your budget and appeals to your group fitness members: 

  • Extra paid time off
  • Monetary prize or gift card
  • Paid vacation
  • Group dinner or coffee for the winning team
  • Relaxing spa day 
  • Free company swag, products, or services
  • Dress casual for the workweek
  • Gym membership

The rewards limit ends with your creativity. 

4. Try an Obstacle Course

Creating an obstacle course is a smart way to make fitness feel less like a workout and more like a playground. Not everyone is a fan of strength training and cardio. If you present your fitness group with a team obstacle course, they’ll be more intrigued and excited to participate. 

You can DIY an obstacle course or use your local boutique gym. Ideas to include are weight lifting, rope races, rowing sprints, relay runs, pull-ups, tire rolls, and climbing. 

5. Train for a Group Race

We’ve talked about the importance of setting a goal when it comes to group fitness. A team race is the ultimate end goal.

It’s becoming trendy for millennial offices to compete in major athletic events together. Register your team for a 5K, marathon or if you’re feeling very ambitious a triathlon. 

An organized event is a fun fitness challenge that makes fitness training easier. With a final race date in mind, everyone can work together towards the same thing and lift each other up.

Something like a marathon requires professional guidance and an organized training plan scheduled months in advance to build and taper towards race day. 

6. Pair Accountability Partners

Accountability partners are especially helpful for long-term fitness challenges. Each person is assigned a partner and they’re responsible for keeping each other in check.

For example, for a 30-day walking challenge accountability partners can track each other’s steps, text each other progress, or even just meet up for their daily walks. 

Having a dedicated partner within a larger group makes things concrete.

7. Battle of the Sexes

It’s an antiquated but effective strategy. Men versus women ignite the competitive fire inside us.

This could be a fun fitness strategy for gender-balanced offices or families.

8. Track Performance

In a popular cycling studio, Flywheel, participant points are displayed on a large dashboard during the class. This strategy applied by Flywheel allows every cycling student to gauge their performance with the rest of the class.

As the hour goes on, the rankings and scores are constantly changing. The psychology of this dashboard motivates participants to push harder in an effort to “win” the number one spot on the dashboard.

Participants are more likely to push themselves to perform during the class and feel more satisfied with their efforts at the end. This same dashboard strategy is useful when applied to group fitness classes.

A “leaderboard” creates a sense of notoriety that appeals to human beings’ biological desire to be the best! While everyone won’t make it on a leaderboard, the aspiration motivates people to hit their own personal records and provides a baseline for their performance.

9. Apply Technology

In this strategy, you will combine recommendations eight and nine. Tracking performance is important, but if no one has access to the data it’s pretty useless. 

Today there are so many applications that allow you to create fitness dashboards. Whatever your group fitness challenges are, they can be measured, tracked, displayed, and shared with an application.

Look for a fitness tracking app that suits your needs. You’ll be able to share data with friends, family, or colleagues on the app. Track metrics like daily step count, pace, calories burned, or weight lifting records. 

10. Make It an Annual Event

Whatever fitness challenge you decide to implement, don’t just make it a one-time thing. Make it a daily or annual event. This will motivate participants to stay fit all year long in anticipation of your recurring event.

Start Planning Your Fitness Challenge Today!

Whether you’re riding solo or working with a group, a fitness challenge is a fun way to challenge your limits and improve your physical and mental health. Fitness teaches important gains beyond the gym that will help your teams lead a well-rounded life.

Join our gym today and get your team started with a fitness challenge!