Personal Training or Group Fitness: Two Sides of the Same Coin

fitness gym

Personal Training or Group Fitness: Two Sides of the Same Coin

by | Dec 29, 2018

How Total Row combines both modes of training to create the perfect exercise experience.

Need a Fitness Plan. Where to Begin?

Sometimes it feels like deciding on a workout plan is akin to scouring an oversized menu to find the simple dish you’ve been craving – the options seem endless and overwhelming, yet you can’t find what you really want.

The bad news is that the number of fitness choices is only going to grow. Not only do you need to decide the type of training you want (personal training or group training), but you also need to decide the style your prefer (circuit, HIIT, rowing, running, yoga, weight lifting, barre, etc).

The good news is that the best ones have been there the whole time (hint: it involves rowing).

So, the question we will try to answer today: With all of these options, how should I get started with the most effective training plan for me?

From the Top: Personal Training vs. Group Training

So rather than diving headfirst into the endless menu of fitness options, let’s start at the highest level – Personal Training vs. Group Training.

In personal training, your workout is a 1-1 with a (hopefully) “qualified” fitness expert. A session could be at a local gym, at your house, in a local park, or nearly anywhere else. The frequency and length of training sessions will depend on your goals and budget.

  • Advantages: Tailored to your needs. Meets as frequently as required. Usually includes a nutrition aspect. Workout should vary from class to class.
  • Disadvantages: Much more expensive. Success depends greatly on your trainer’s skill.

In group fitness, your workout will be led by an instructor (sometimes two), and will be conducted in a class format with other participants. Most traditionally, these classes are giving at different times throughout the day at a specific gym specializing in their style of fitness. Prominent examples here are Crossfit, Orange Theory, and of course, Total Row!

  • Advantages: Group classes can be more fun and inspirational. Community support. Usually more affordable per class. Access to excellent instructors and equipment.
  • Disadvantages: Classes can be too big. Classes aren’t tailored to your exact needs, and can feel generic. Class time and locations may not be ideal. 

OK, So How do I Choose Which is Right for Me?

Well, this is the tricky part. Both have their positives. Both have their negatives. To make things a little easier, you can make the decision based on a few criteria:

  • Money: In reality, this is the big difference. In some cases, a single personal training session can cost the same as a monthly membership to a group fitness facility – ouch! If you are stretched for cash and not sure how committed you will be, maybe start with group fitness.
  • Comfort level: Some people just don’t like group fitness. They can feel lost in the crowd or intimidated by more seasoned vets. If this is you, small group fitness (2-5 people) and personal training are both good options.
  • Goals: Do you have a very specific goal, like finish a marathon, squat a certain amount, or target a specific weakness? In these cases, the personal aspect of a personal trainer can be really helpful. If your goals are more general, like losing weight or your cardiovascular fitness, then group classes are an excellent option.
  • Availability: Does your schedule and availability change all the time? In these circumstances, a personal trainer can fit into your schedule as needed. Group fitness classes are at specific times, which may not fit your availability.
  • Accountability: Does a group working out together motivate you, or do you want a coach-like interaction? Do you thrive on the competitiveness of a team environment? This comes down to personal preference and what motivates you.

As you can see, each has its perks. The obvious problem remains: which is better? In actuality neither is “better,” and this is where Total Row comes in…

Total Row Proposes a Better Way: The Best of Both Worlds

At Total Row, we are always trying to create plans that are (1) accessible, (2) affordable, (3) effective, and (4) fun. That led us to the seemingly obvious answer: what if we just combined the two in a way that maximizes the advantages while minimizing the disadvantages?

To accomplish this, we created the Total Row Ultimate Package. This all-inclusive, affordable package contains:

(1) Individual Program planning

(2) Unlimited Membership to all group fitness classes

(3) 2 Personal Training sessions a month

(4) Nutrition Tracking

So how does this fit in with what we’ve discussed so far? Let’s take a look at each component:

  • Individual Program Planning: This serves as your master plan. We sit down with you 1-1 and ascertain your goals, expectations, schedule, and any other pertinent information. Regular check-ins will make sure you remain on track as we help monitor your progress. This is a huge advantage that is lacking at nearly all group fitness facilities.
  • Unlimited Membership: This will likely be the foundation of your training plan. With an unlimited number of classes available, we can build a strong base to build from. The plan will likely take advantage of our full class suite: rowing, lifting, and yoga. Here is a key volume of group fitness: volume.
  • 2 Personal Training Sessions: This is where we can start to get really specific. While the Unlimited membership will give you the volume of sessions required to really improve your fitness, personal training will let us spend time working on your specific plan. More PT sessions can also be added at a deep discount.
  • Nutrition Tracking: Another advantage of personal tracking is help with your nutrition. We will help you track what you eat and when. This is the icing on the cake for any training plan!

To learn more about Total Row’s Ultimate Package Personal Training plan, visit the page here!


Final Thoughts on Personal Training + Group Fitness

Personal Training and Group Fitness classes both have their advantages, as well as disadvantages. What’s important, is that you find the proper plan, or mix of plans, for yourself.

With the Total Row Ultimate Package, we try and combine the best of both worlds. If you aren’t sure about which option is right for you, our a-la-cart option lets you test the waters (or add to your current plan at a deeply discounted rate). If you want to learn more, or sign up, follow the link below!