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27 Most Popular Group Fitness Classes & Where to Try Them

Most Popular Group Fitness Classes & Where to Try Them

Popular fitness classes are a great way to keep active and make connections with like-minded individuals, who will all share your passion for a specific workout style and/or routine. 

In this OriGym article, we’re going to break down 27 of the most popular group fitness classes in the UK. 

We’ll cover some general information relating to how the sessions typically operate, and how you can get involved in your local area.

If you’d like to personally teach these classes, your first step should be to enrol on our Personal Training diploma, where you’ll gain valuable skills and information required to lead both large groups and small one-to-one fitness sessions. 

Contents:

The 27 Most Popular Group Fitness Classes

#1 - Circuit Training 

#1 Popular fitness classes

When it comes to discussing the most popular group fitness classes, circuit training will naturally spring to the minds of many. 

For those unfamiliar with the practice, circuit training is a form of body conditioning that sees participants performing a series of exercises in succession. 

Note: Each section of this workout must be completed in either a set amount of time or a designated number of reps/sets. 

Circuit training is regarded to be one of the best gym classes, as it incorporates a variety of exercises into its teaching, rather than confining itself to one mode. 

For example, a typical class session could look something like this: 

  • Exercise 1 (30 seconds): Jogging on the spot - Endurance Training
  • Break (10 Seconds)
  • Exercise 2 (30 seconds): Squats with resistance band - Resistance Training
  • Break (10 Seconds)
  • Exercise 3 (15 seconds / 15 seconds): High knees & star jump alternates - HIIT
  • Break (10 Seconds)
  • Exercise 4 (30 seconds): Kettlebell bent over row - Weight Training 

#1.5 most popular group fitness classes

One of the benefits of circuit training is that you can incorporate virtually any form of exercise and equipment. 

This makes the practice entirely customisable to your own personal preference.

One reason why circuit training is one of the most popular group fitness classes is that it’s so versatile. 

Many prefer doing circuit training as they find it’s more exciting and engaging, when compared to the likes of using a treadmill for 30-minutes. 

Where Can I Try Circuit Training Classes? 

1.75 most popular fitness group classes

As one of the most popular group fitness classes in existence, many gyms, both chain and local/private, will offer this service to its clients. 

For example, the screenshot provided above clearly shows how the popular chain PureGym offers these classes across the entire UK. 

Alternatively, simply typing in ‘Circuit Training Classes Near Me’ into Google is guaranteed to pull up a list of localised results.

#2 - HIIT

#2 - Popular gym classes

High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is also considered to be one of the best types of exercise classes. 

Similar to the previous example, this popularity stems from the fact that participants can engage in a variety of exercises in a short frame of time.

HIIT workouts involve short bursts of intense exercise, which is then followed by periods of lower-intensity that allow the body to recover. 

This is regarded by many professionals to be one of the most efficient ways of training.

A HIIT workout is most beneficial when performed for anywhere between 10-30 minutes, a time which transfers well to a group learning environment.

#2.5 most popular gym classes

A typical HIIT workout typically lasts between 10-25 minutes which many find attractive. A workout involves interspersing short bursts of high-intensity exercise with short breaks in between. 

In order to feel the benefits of HIIT training, we strongly advise that you think about these intervals as sets. 

This will make the process seem less intimidating, as you will be able to break the workout down into manageable chunks.

For example, A typical HIIT workout could look like this:

  • HHigh knees for 20 seconds
  • 5-second break
  • Star jumps for 20 seconds
  • 5-second break
  • Squat jumps for 20 seconds
  • 5-second break
  • Heel flicks for 20 seconds
  • 5-second break

(Completing this HIIT sequence will be classified as 1 set, and will be repeated at various points throughout the popular gym class)

Whilst the intense demands of HIIT may seem off-putting at first, it's these factors that actually make it one of the best group exercises classes to attend. 

You can rally around friends or fellow gym-goers, boosting morale as you encourage each other to push your limits. 

Where Can I Try HIIT Classes?

#2.75 popular group fitness class HIIT

Similar to circuit training, HIIT can be performed anywhere, be it at the gym or from the comfort of your own home.

The latter can be achieved through signing up for online services, such as the one visible above from GymBox

Interested parties can stream HIIT videos to their electronic devices, forming their own fitness group classes with friends and family. 

Likewise, if you’re new to the practice and want to test the waters before committing to a purchase, there’s a wide range of fitness enthusiasts like Natacha Océane, who are making similar HIIT-based content on YouTube.

Finding somewhere to practice this popular group fitness class for yourself has never been easier - the real work comes in pushing yourself to the peak of intensity.

#3 - Indoor Cycling 

#3 Cycling popular gym class

If you wish to discover more of the best gym classes to attend with friends, we’d highly recommend getting involved with indoor cycling. 

This popular fitness class focuses on improving your endurance and strength, through the course of high-intensity intervals. 

Whilst this may sound intimidating, these classes will typically allow you to control the intensity settings of your stationary bike. 

However, in other sessions, the instructor may have more control and can dictate the level that the class performs by shouting instructions over accompanying music.

#3.5 popular group fitness classes gym

While each instructor will lead their session in their own style, an example of how they might lead the first 7-minutes could be as followed:

  • 2 minutes - Pedal at a low intensity to warm up the body and muscles
  • 2 minutes - 20-second intervals of high intensity and low intensity pedalling
  • 1 minute - Medium intensity pedalling as an active recovery
  • 2 minutes - 20-second intervals of stand-up pedalling and regular pedalling 

The motivation that these instructors can provide is unlike any other, but another factor that contributes to this fitness class's popularity is its health benefits. 

For example, by participating in just one hour of indoor cycling, you can expect to burn 600 calories.

Where Can I Try Indoor Cycling?

#3.75 popular group fitness classes

Similar to the previous entrants on this list, many gyms and fitness centers will offer their own variations of this class. 

However, if you’re interested in exploring the most popular variation of this fitness phenomenon you could look for a popular chain such as Les Mills’ RPM classes. 

These popular fitness classes offer a great group experience, in which instructors will take you on hill climbs, sprints, and flat riding sessions, pumping your ambition with exciting music and group chanting. 

To find a class close to you, simply check out the RPM page and input your location.

 

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#4 - Boot Camps

#4 - types of fitness classes

Now, when the words ‘bootcamp’ come to mind, you likely paint a picture of a group of people doing military-style training outdoors. 

While some bootcamps are like this (which may well be exactly what you’re looking for) others can be found in general fitness environments. 

Both indoor and outdoor boot camps use a combination of high-intensity aerobic and strength training. 

In most cases, bootcamp attendees will be doing bodyweight exercises that engage all aspects of the body.

#4.5 - fitness class types Boot camp

There will therefore be less reliance on the use of equipment than other entrants on this list.

As well as this, boot camps also accommodate various purposes, and you will often find that some have specific goals in mind. These include the likes of

  • Losing weight
  • Toning up muscles 
  • Practicing yoga or pilates 
  • Practicing yoga and pilates
  • Training intensively through practices such as HIIT

Ultimately, boot camps are regarded as one of the best fitness classes because they unite clientele with one goal. 

So, if you’d like to meet and engage with like-minded individuals, we’d highly recommend this process. 

Where Can I Try Boot Camps? 

#4.75 - fitness class types Bear Grylls

Indoor boot camps are typically conducted in gym studios, whilst outdoor boot camps are usually held in local parks or areas with obstacle courses. 

If you’re after outdoor boot camps, you could check out our list of the best boot camps and fitness retreats to try. 

Alternatively, you could look into programs such as Bear Grylls’ Be Military Fit program . 

These events are held all over the country, several times per week, allowing you to find a boot camp that suits your existing schedule. 

#5 - Yoga

#5 - exercise class types yoga

Everyone has heard of yoga, the ancient practice that has its roots in India. This is one of the most popular fitness classes in the entire world, and fuses together the body and mind through movements, poses and various breathing techniques.

This popular fitness class is an incredibly relaxing form of physical exercise that seeks to test endurance, strength and flexibility. 

A typical yoga session will have an instructor positioned at the front of the class, in order to allow for all the attending yogis to see and follow their movements. 

However, the sentence ‘typical yoga class’ is somewhat hard to define, as the practice has several different variations, each of which has its own teachings and asanas to follow.

For example, a typical yoga studio may offer classes in:

  • Vinyasa 
  • Hatha 
  • Hot 
  • Ashtanga 

#5.5 best gym classes

If you’re new to the practice and want to learn more about which class would be suitable for you, OriGym’s guide to 24 different types of yoga will provide you with lots of beneficial information. 

Some classes may rely heavily on group interaction, requiring those attendants to breathe or chant in unison. In contrast, other variations will focus on individuality and centering yourself.

This makes yoga the ideal group class for those looking to learn on their own, and as part of a wider collective. 

Where Are Yoga Sessions Held?

#5.75 - Best fitness classes for yoga

Most yoga sessions will be held in yoga studios specifically. In order to find a facility within your immediate area, we’d recommend using local Google search terms, like "yoga near me".

For example, if you’re looking to explore the practice of hot yoga simply search ‘Hot Yoga Studios near me’. 

Alternatively, if you’d like to practice at home with your friends and family, there are a plethora of online services that allow you to do so. 

For example, you could follow popular yoga YouTube channels, or subscribe to paid services such as DoYogaWithMe.

#6 - Pilates

#6 types of gym classes platies

Next up, we’re going to discuss Pilates, and one of the biggest misconceptions surrounding this practice is that it’s identical to yoga.

However, when discussing Pilates and yoga, both fitness classes are entirely unique, and can provide the body with unique benefits that are specific to each respective practice.

For example, Pilates is a form of exercise that focuses on strengthening the body with particular emphasis on core training. 

This is achieved through a combination of mat work exercises and using Pilates equipment where holding positions for prolonged periods can enhance strength, balance and flexibility. 

Instructors will also encourage you to have an awareness of your breathing while performing the exercises, which helps to focus your mind-body connection. 

#6 most popular fitness classes palates

This is where Pilates differs from yoga, as it relies heavily on the use of equipment and machinery to obtain these results. Some examples of Pilates equipment include:

The equipment and machinery add resistance to your Pilates workout, making the session somewhat more challenging. 

You can increase the resistance over time to gradually improve your flexibility as you become more confident using the equipment. 

For reference, Pilates machines are also colour-coded with different resistance levels so that users can easily establish what level they’re working with. They are the following: 

  • Yellow = Very Light
  • Blue = Light
  • Red = Regular
  • Green = Heavy

Where Can I Try Pilates Classes?

#6.75 - the best gym classes

Due to the safety issues that arise with a reliance on equipment, it's often recommended that newcomers attend classes in person rather than doing so from your own home.

These sessions are also commonly taught in gyms too, with popular chains like Nuffield Health typically offering multiple Pilates fitness classes in any given city.

Should anything go wrong, an instructor will be able to immediately step in and offer help.

Much like with yoga classes you can look for Pilates studios using local Google searches. In doing so you will be able to find specialist locations within your immediate vicinity.

#7 - Zumba

#7 best gym classes zumba

Zumba is a fitness program that fuses Latin and international music with energetic dancing. A typical session will get everyone up and moving, making it one of the best gym classes for all ages.

When attending a Zumba class, you’ll be led by a Zumba dancer who will instruct you through various dance routines. 

The music will help to keep you moving in time to the beat, so you needn’t worry if you’re apprehensive about dancing! 

There are four main basic rhythms involved in any given Zumba class: 

  • Salsa
  • Reggaeton
  • Merengue 
  • Cumbia

Each style has its own core steps which your instructor will demonstrate for you to copy, so you never have to worry about these popular fitness classes becoming boring or repetitive.

Many enjoy Zumba as it steers away from what is conventionally viewed as ‘working out’ - e.g. running or lifting weights. 

Instead, these classes trick your mind into thinking you’re just dancing when you’re actually building up quite a sweat. 

Where Can I Find Zumba Classes?

#7 how to find the best fitness classes on zumba

Another great perk of Zumba is that no equipment is needed during a session, meaning that you can realistically do it from any location! 

However, since Zumba is a trademarked class, all official Zumba classes can be found on their website

As seen above, we used the city of Manchester as an example, which highlighted just how many gyms, fitness studios, and sports centres were offering classes. 

You may also notice that Zumba now offers online services, which may be an ideal set-up for those of you looking to exercise within a group of friends, but from a more private location. 

If you’d like to learn how to become a Zumba instructor yourself, click here.

#8 - Water Aerobics 

#8 water aerobics as one of the most popular group fitness class

When it comes to different types of gym classes, some prefer something aquatic-based. In this instance, we’d highly recommend getting involved with water aerobics. 

For those unfamiliar with the practice, water aerobics is fairly self-explanatory, in that it involves the performance of aerobic exercises within large bodies of water such as a pool. 

Please note, these workouts are typically done with participants standing vertically, with the water being waist deep.

This practice is a great way to build muscular strength through low-endurance impact. For example, did you know that this type of workout can have the following benefits: 

  • Core muscles: Lunges, straight-leg kicks, and jump & twist exercises
  • Arm muscles: Underwater bicep curls, underwater punches, and dumbbell lifts 
  • Leg muscles: Water running, squats, and lunges
  • Glutes: Lunges, high knee kicks, and underwater squats 
  • Back muscles: Water walking, running, and star jumps  

 

Where Can I Try Water Aerobics Classes?

#8 - best group fitness class swimming

Typically, if your local gym or fitness centre has a pool, they will offer these types of fitness classes. 

For example, the chain Village Gyms provides these popular workout classes across various branches in the UK.

These classes may also alter the delivery depending upon who its target demographic is. For example, Village Gyms offers water aerobics classes for:

  • Beginners 
  • Seniors
  • Pregnant individuals 

However, even if your gym has a pool, these classes aren’t always guaranteed. It is therefore always better to do your own research prior, and if you can’t find information on a website, don’t be afraid to ask staff.

Your inquiry alone could highlight to them that there is an interest and demand for water aerobic group fitness classes. 

 

#9 - Kickboxing 

#9 - most popular group fitness classes

Kickboxing is a combination of karate and boxing which consists of kicking and punching an opponent, in a safe form of sparing. 

To reiterate, kickboxing is a popular group gym class that is practiced in self-defense. 

Whilst competitive forms do exist, they are often reserved for professional leagues, so don’t worry - you won’t be squaring off with someone in your first class. 

During these types of gym classes, participants will either be working alone with a punching bag or with boxing pads in pairs. 

#9 types of fitness classes

An experienced instructor will then demonstrate a range of choreographed movements to fast-paced music, which must be mimicked by those in attendance. 

This music will help to maintain high levels of energy throughout the session, which can help to increase calorie burn. 

Typical kickboxing classes last between 30-minutes to 1-hour, with a 1-hour kickboxing workout burning between 350-450 calories. 

So, where can you attend a group kickboxing class? 

#9 fitness class types

Kickboxing sessions are bookable at some gyms, recreation centers, or private studios. However, we’d advise you to look for the latter, trying to hone your search on a location that will specifically teach and specialise in kickboxing. 

This is where local Google searches come in incredibly handy. Simply searching ‘Kickboxing classes near me’ highlighted TMAS Martial Arts Studio in Liverpool. 

This popular training studio could have gone unnoticed, had we relied solely on popular fitness classes that are solely taught in gyms. 

There could be a combat sports specialist on your doorstep, you just need to be proactive in your search for them.

#10 - CrossFit

#10 popular types of fitness classes

CrossFit is a branded fitness program that involves performing various functional movements at a high intensity. CrossFit is practised in over 13,000 affiliated gyms in 120 countries. 

Each class incorporates high-intensity interval training that aims to strengthen muscles and improve general fitness. 

The movements involved in these exercises are similar to actions that you would perform in day-to-day activities, such as:

  • Squats: This uses the quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, and abdominals to mimic everyday actions such as sitting on and raising from a chair, or picking up shopping bags from the floor. 
  • Lateral lunges: This tests your glute, quadriceps, and hip adductor muscles in a similar fashion to how we walk up and downstairs. 
  • Pushup: Works the pectorals, anterior deltoids, and triceps, each of which helps to build upper body strength to utilise in everyday life. 

#10 best types of gym classes

A typical CrossFit session will include performing these various exercises for a predetermined amount of time. In response, your muscular strength and endurance levels will significantly increase. 

Your CrossFit leader will instruct you on how many reps and sets you are to complete. This can vary from class to class, and is largely dependent on the instructor and the skill set of those in attendance.

For example, CrossFit classes that are designed for experts will naturally include more reps and sets when compared to general sessions for beginners. 

Where Can I Try CrossFit?

#10 best gym classes map

Since CrossFit is a branded fitness program, only those who have become qualified CrossFit instructors can lead classes. 

To find ones in your local area simply head over to the CrossFit website, and view over 15,000 hubs to choose from.

For example, the map above has been taken from the site itself, and clearly shows that there are over 600 CrossFit locations in the UK alone!

#11 - Kettlebell Classes

#11 group exercise classes

Next on the list of different exercise class types is Kettlebell, which again, is somewhat self-explanatory.

However, for those still in the dark these popular fitness classes centre around exercising with kettlebells, ensuring multiple body parts are covered in a rhythmic manner. 

A kettlebell instructor will typically stand at the front of a studio, guiding participants through various exercises including:

  • Kettlebell wings
  • Clean and press
  • Thrusters
  • Kettlebell windmill
  • Figure of eight

#11 kettlebell group gym classes

Your instructor will determine how many sets and reps you are to do, while you will get to select the weight of the kettlebells you work with. Over the course of your attendance, it’s encouraged that you increase the weight of the kettlebells gradually to enhance muscle strength and growth if this is your goal. 

For those wondering, why are these types of exercise classes so popular? Well, the benefits of kettlebell workouts include:

  • Increase core strength 
  • Improves balances and coordination 
  • Boosts mobility 
  • Contributes to the loss of body fat 

 

Where Can I Attend Kettlebell Classes?

#11 intro to group gym classes

Almost all gyms will host kettlebell classes that typically last anywhere between 30-45 minutes. 

However, David Lloyds gyms is a great example of a facility that goes above and beyond when it comes to Kettlebells. Not only do they host regular in-person classes, but they also provide videos online, allowing clients to workout from the comfort of their own homes.

If you’d like to take time to study this practice in your own time, OriGym’s Kettlebell CPD course would be a great way to learn valuable practical and theoretical skills.

#12 - Step Aerobics

#12 best group fitness classes

Another example of the best fitness classes to try with friends, family members, and regular gym goers is step aerobics. 

This practice requires you to repeatedly step on and off a raised platform, keeping rhythm with the entire class as well as the beat of music. 

During step aerobics classes you can often adjust the height of the platform depending on how hard you wish to work.

For example, 4-inches tall would be regarded as a fairly easy feat, whereas 12-inches would be reserved for experts.

#12 the most popular group fitness classes

These popular fitness classes are a fun and energetic way to work out, acting as a nice change from monstrous treadmill runs.

But don’t worry, you won’t be going into this process blind, as a qualified aerobics instructor will be on hand to guide you through this process. 

If you’d like to lead these classes for yourself, you can click here to learn how to become an aerobics instructor.

#12 best group gym classes

Now, if you’re wanting to explore different types of gym classes that work a whole range of muscle groups, you’re in the right place! 

Step aerobics promises to exercise all of the following muscle groups:

  • Core muscles: To keep the body stable with each step
  • Leg muscles: To step up and down from the platform
  • Arm muscles: Will swing alternately to leg movements to keep the body balanced
  • Back: To keep your posture tall and strong
  • Glutes: Are worked hard to support the increased flexion at the hip

Your step aerobics instructor may also give you the chance to use light dumbbells in your workout to enhance calorie burn. 

This will make your workout that bit more challenging and help to improve fitness and endurance gradually. 

Where Are Step Aerobics Fitness Classes Held?

#12 popular fitness classes

Most of these classes are located in gym studios, school halls, and sports centres. As discussed throughout the article, you can either approach gym staff or use local Google searches to find a class near you.

For example, a location that offers this class close to OriGym’s head office is PureGym, as seen in the screenshot above.

Alternatively, feel free to use YouTube creators like CDornerFitness, who regularly post step aerobic workouts suitable for a variety of skill levels.



#13 - Group Running

#13 the most popular group fitness classes

If you’re on the hunt for popular fitness classes and want to enjoy the great outdoors, why not keep it simple and look for running groups.

These groups typically meet multiple times per week to run in a publicly accessible location. This makes for an ideal fitness group as you can work it around your existing schedule. 

Once you have made your initial contact with the club, they will provide you with information relating to where you’re meeting. 

Following a quick warm-up, the session will begin and you can start running as a collective group.

#13 types of group fitness classes

Here, you can digress what your skill level currently is and you will then be sorted into a group of individuals who perform at a similar level. 

Following this, a leader will guide you through the trail, and depending on what level the group is, you may stop for rest periods throughout.

Group running is a fantastic way to meet up with friends and family to exercise together, to have a catch-up while exercising. 

Alternatively, group running also provides a great opportunity for solo runners to meet new like-minded people.

Where Can I Try Group Running?

#13 different fitness group types

There are a few ways that you can be a part of these existing fitness classes:

You could use databases like Run Together, a website that details group runs in your local area. Alternatively, you could query whether your gym host group runs and if so, they’ll be happy to inform you of how to get started. 

Alternatively, you can personally conduct a social media search for groups within your area. For example, we found DockSide Runners simply by searching ‘Running Groups in Liverpool’. 

#14 - Group Hiking

#14 best fitness group classes

If the previous example caught your eye, why not also give group hiking a go? 

These types of group exercise classes tend to be organised by hiking enthusiasts who want to show others the beauty that so many mountain ranges have to offer.

In a similar vein to the previous point on running, group hiking trips will include meeting up with your fellow hikers at the starting point of your walk. 

You will then follow a leader up towards a predetermined endpoint, which could be the peak, or a point along the way.

Group hiking sessions are ideal for those who have a little more time on their hands and would prefer a more scenic daily workout. 

Now, please be aware that not every hike will be climbing Snowdonia, some may involve simply walking through rural villages. 

So, how do you get involved in group hiking?

#14 different types of fitness classes

First, for those looking for a virtual solution check out the MeetUp app/website. 

Here you will gain access to thousands of local groups and organised events to join - simply search for appropriate hiking groups, it’s that easy! 

Alternatively, hiking equipment shops will have information on how you can join a hiking group within the local or surrounding areas. 

Many will even have bulletin boards that detail upcoming events, designed specifically to attract newcomers! 

If you’re enjoying our list of the most popular group fitness classes, we think you’ll be interested in reading these other OriGym articles:

 

#15 - Group TRX Training

#15 group fitness classes

TRX training (Total Resistance Exercise) is a suspension-based workout program designed by the U.S. Navy SEAL, Randy Hetrick.

When using TRX equipment, individuals have to rely on their body weight to develop and improve their:

  • Strength
  • Balance
  • Flexibility
  • Core Stability

Said equipment consists of long bands that are attached to the ceiling or a secure bar. When users grip the band and lean back, the body is forced to balance, thus working a range of muscles. 

A typical TRX training session will consist of performing different exercises to workout various parts of the body. Here are two examples of exercises that your TRX instructor may teach you: 

TRX fitness group classes

  • Squat & Fly - Grab the TRX bands, one in each hand, and squat down, letting the TRX take your weight. Hold the position for 3 seconds before driving through the legs back to standing, spreading your arms as you push to target the shoulders. 

TRX fitness group classes 2

  • Clock Press - Grab the TRX bands, one in each hand, and slowly lean forwards until a 90-degree angle is formed between the forearm and bicep. While holding the left arm in place, extend the right arm fully, hold for 2-seconds and return to the chest. Repeat with the opposite side.

For further guidance on this matter, check out our article detailing the 17 Best TRX exercises.

Where Can I Try TRX Training?

#15 TRX popular fitness class

If you haven’t done a group TRX training class before, it’s strongly encouraged to do so before trying these exercises by yourself. 

TRX instructors will be able to provide demonstrations of how to use the equipment safely and appropriately. 

You can try this popular gym class with the TRX developers directly. By using this site you will be able to connect with trainers and groups across the country to find a location suitable for you.

Alternatively, check out the gym chain Nuffield Health who offer these classes as part of their membership subscription across the UK.

#16 - Pole Dancing

#16 popular fitness class

If someone were to say to you, “give some examples of popular gym classes”, it’s likely that you’ll think of an indoor cycling class, yoga, or pilates. 

However, a new and upcoming type of exercise class that has increased in popularity in recent years is pole dancing.

These types of gym classes consist of a combination of dance and gymnastics, performed on a vertical pole that has been secured to the ground and/or ceiling.

It tests one’s strength, agility, and cardiovascular fitness. For this reason, pole dancing is considered to be one of the fastest ways to tone up, especially in ‘stubborn’ areas such as the inner thighs, arms, and abs. 

#16 of the best fitness classes

Group pole dancing sessions tend to last for around 45-minutes. Participants will come together into a room with several poles to each have a turn at testing their strength and agility. 

Sessions will also be led by a professional pole dancer who will guide you on how to perform different moves. 

This is especially beneficial if you are new to the world of pole dancing as instructors can provide tips and tricks to enhance your skills.

 

Where Can I Try Pole Dancing?

#16 examples of the best gym classes

Most pole dancing classes are held at dance studios and some gyms such as Snap Fitness and Nuffield Health

Alternatively, if you’re looking to find a group that is a little more personable, you can use social media to find classes within your local area. 

For example, after doing a simple search on Instagram we found AL Pole Fitness here in Liverpool. 

In summary, pole dancing is most certainly among the cohort of most popular fitness classes in the UK, especially in recent years. 

Why not give it a go with family and friends to see what all the rage is about? 

 

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Enrol today and begin your OriGym Personal Training Diploma 

#17 - Tai Chi

#17 types of fitness classes

Tai chi is an ancient Chinese tradition that is practised as a graceful form of exercise. Attendees of this popular fitness class will perform a series of movements that are performed in a slow and focussed way, with accompanied deep breathing.

For this reason, Tai Chi can be seen as a fusion of yoga and martial arts. It is an incredibly calming form of exercise that is known to enhance concentration, balance, and flexibility all the while being a great stress reliever.

When it comes to these types of exercise classes, groups will come together in a quiet space. 

A lot of the time (when weather permits) this will be held in outdoor areas such as parks. The main bulk of a Tai Chi class will be led by an instructor who will stand at the front of the class so it is visible to all. 

They will transition into various poses very slowly for participants to mimic, and ensure that the session flows smoothly.

So, where can you find a Tai Chi class? 

#17 Ta Chi popular gym class

Many Tai Chi communities are waiting for you to join. Much like yoga studios, these will typically be independent, but may occasionally be held in gyms or local fitness centres. 

For example, a local Google search pulled up the following results for the Liverpool area, with a few convenient city centre locations.

Alternatively, these classes are also accessible online through companies such as the Thai Chi Foundation

The best part, sign up is completely free and will grant you access to hundreds of hours worth of material. 

#18 - Peloton Sessions

#18 different types of gym class virtual

Throughout this discussion of the best gym classes, we have attempted to provide some virtual alternatives to in-person classes. However, this next entry on our list is entirely online!

Following the continual cycles of lockdown, the fitness company Peloton took off in popularity by offering their customers a way to connect to clients and instructors worldwide.  

These state-of-the-art exercise bikes and treadmills connect to online classes that are streamed into your home. 

Those with Peloton equipment have the option to subscribe to Peloton’s membership service where they can gain access to live workouts, on-demand exercise videos, and their Peloton Sessions feature which was released in the winter of 2020. 

 

How Can I Get Involved With Peloton Sessions?

#18 peleton types of fitness class

These workouts are for a minimum of 20 minutes and can go on for however long you’d like. Whilst you can personally invite friends, there are options for solo runners and riders every 30-minutes to join other members across the world.

Each option also provides you with a leaderboard where your times and distances get marked and synced with all Peloton members. This adds an element of friendly competition to your workouts to enhance motivation. 

The only downside to Peloton’s sessions is that you have to own one of their bikes or treadmills and be a member. 

  • Peloton Bikes Range from: £1,550 - £2,300
  • Peloton Treadmills Range from: £2,545 - £3,085

This can be a hefty investment, plus access to the sessions app will cost you £13 per month.

So, if discovering some of the best popular gym classes was your aim when starting this article, you now know that there are also some great virtual workout options for you to get involved with. 

#19 - Legs, Bums & Tums

#19 popular gym classes

Legs, Bums & Tums, or LBT for short, is a popular gym class that focuses on toning (you guessed it) your legs, bum and stomach!  

LBT classes are considered to be full-body aerobic workouts that last anywhere between 30-40 minutes. They typically included exercises such as:

  • Squats 
  • Lunges
  • Jogging on the spot
  • Weighted exercises.

But, don’t worry, you will have full control over the weights you use, meaning that you can opt for light plates if you’re a fitness newbie and increase this over time as you gain confidence. 

#19 gym class types

Each workout will also be led by an LBT instructor who will guide you through each exercise, teaching you the correct forms and techniques to get the most out of your session.

Additionally, instructors will also accompany the workout with loud, engaging music to enhance motivation and keep you moving to the beat! 

As well as toning up, LBT classes are great for weight loss too, as with each session you can burn up to 300 calories!

Where Can I Join Legs, Bums and Tums? 

#19 gym class types LBT

Does all of this sound attractive to you? If so, you can join LBT classes in many of the UK’s leading gyms including:

However, keep in mind that these classes are very popular, as such they may be too crowded for walk-ins. Therefore, we’d recommend booking a place online in one of your local gyms.

#20 - Boxercise 

#20 types of gym classes

Next up on the list of popular fitness classes is Boxercise! This differs from the competitive sport, as these sessions are often strictly non-contact. 

Boxercise is a full-body workout class that puts your strength, endurance, and cardiovascular fitness to the test. Following your attendance, you can expect to see improved speed, agility, and power!

These popular fitness classes begin with a series of warm-up exercises such as:

#20 popular fitness classes

The actual ‘boxing’ itself will involve being partnered up with another attendee. One person will wear boxing pads and other gloves - you’ll have the opportunity to swap halfway through the session. 

Your Boxercise instructor will then lead the group through a series of movements that you and your partner are to mimic. 

These will include punches and kicks to put your strength and muscular endurance to the test. 

You’ll also be taught about how to master boxing footwork which can take some time but when cracked, can seriously enhance your boxing performance. 

Where Can I Try Boxercise? 

#20 types of fitness classes boxercise

Similar to Zumba, Boxercise is a trademarked exercise class that makes it easy for exercisers to locate where their nearest session is held. 

Head on over to Boxercise’s official website to find out more!

#21 - Muay Thai

#21 best fitness class

If you’re interested in similar types of gym classes, then we’d also recommend Muay Thai, the national sport of Thailand.

Also referred to as “Thai boxing”, Muay Thai is a martial art and combat sport that includes standing up and striking your opponent by using various fist, elbow, knee, and shin movements such as :

  • Jabs
  • Hooks
  • Crosses
  • Uppercuts
  • Clinching
  • Sweeps
  • Throws 

If you’re already familiar with these punching variations from practicing Western boxing, you may find it easy to adapt your existing knowledge towards Muay Thai.

Conversely, if you’re a total newbie to combat sports and martial arts, Muay Thai is a great place to begin. 

There are many fitness groups and classes that welcome anyone of any level, providing a great opportunity to get started. 

Where Can I Try Muay Thai?

#21 popular group fitness classes

Muay Thai is typically practiced at boxing clubs, so it may be worth implementing some of your own research to see who offers it within your local area. 

We conducted some basic research and found that the following institutes are considered to be some of the best Muay Thai providers in the UK:

Consider booking a session at one of these gyms to see what all the rage is about with Muay Thai. 

#22 - Combat Class

#22 fighting types of gym classes

Why not encompass the benefits of all the popular fitness classes that focus on combat sports and martial arts into one class? 

That way, you get a taste of different types of gym classes such as:

  • Boxing
  • Muay Thai
  • Tai Chi 
  • and many more.

By doing so, you can improve your general strength, as well as your muscular endurance and cardiovascular fitness. 

This is also a popular fitness class among those who are looking to lose weight and tone their physique. 

This is largely because a combat class is a non-stop, high-intensity form of training. You’re working your full-body throughout the whole session, and as a result, in a 60-minute session, you can burn up to 700 calories

But, where can you join a combat class?

#22 types of fitness classes combat

As with many of the other combat-based entries on this list, we’d strongly recommend doing research into martial arts schools in your local area.

By attending these group fitness classes in a specialist environment, you will essentially ensure that you’re getting a professional education, from leaders who know how to practice contact and non-contact combat safely.

In summary, a combat class is a great way to experience a combination of all major combat sports and martial arts. 

If you’re interested in attending regularly, investing in quality equipment such as the best focus mitts will be absolutely essential.

 

#23 - Jazzercise

#23 popular fitness classes for dance

Next up on the list of popular fitness classes is Jazzercise - a super fun, engaging and highly motivating workout that is suitable for a diverse range of clients. 

It’s most similar to Zumba in that Jazzercise is a branded fitness franchise that hosts sessions all over the world. 

There are approximately 32,000 classes per week across 25 countries. The popular group fitness classes blend dance with practices such as:

  • Pilates 
  • Yoga
  • Kickboxing
  • Strength training 

All wrapped up into a 55-minute session designed to burn calories and tone physique - For reference, one class has the potential to burn over 800 calories. 

#23 best gym classes

These routines are hosted by Jazzercise instructors who have choreographed workouts to major hit songs that will keep you energised and motivated to keep on moving. 

There are various types of Jazzercise sessions for you to choose from you. Whilst the average class runs from 55-minutes and targets the whole body, you could also opt for HIIT jazzercise workouts or core-centric sessions.  

 

Where Can I Try Jazzercise? 

#23 the best fitness classes

Thankfully, the jazzercise website has plenty of useful information that will help you track down a class within your local area. 

Simply head over to their company site and input your location - You can then filter your results by how far you’re willing to travel for the class. 

#24 - BODYPUMP

#24 BODYPUMP fitness classes

If you’re interested in attending fast-paced and intense group fitness classes, then you should check out the Les Mills’ trademarked BODYPUMP sessions. 

One of the factors which contribute to the popularity of this group fitness class is that it’s accessible for all ages. 

When you’re in attendance, your BODYPUMP instructor will guide you through the best form and techniques for your fitness goals.

A BODYPUMP session will make use of The Rep Effect - lifting light weights for high repetitions as opposed to heavy weights with fewer reps. This has a range of benefits including: 

  • Lowers the risk of injury
  • Less strain on joints
  • Decreased muscular compensation
  • Increases muscular endurance

By choosing your own weight, you will get to work at your own pace and comfort, instead of being pushed too hard. 

Where Can I Try BODYPUMP?

#24 BODYPUMP popular fitness classes

Similar to the Les Mills RPM section, we’d advise using the websites ‘find a class’ feature to track studios that provide this service within your local area.

Remember, due to this being trademarked teaching only instructors who have gone through the Les Mills system can lead a class.

If you’re interested in doing so yourself, check out our blog discussing how to become a Les Mills instructor.

#25 - Absolute Abs Class 

#25 best gym classes for abs

Absolute Abs is a quick 20-30 minute group exercise class that is perfect for conditioning the core muscles when you don’t have a lot of spare time. 

Whether your goal is to get a six-pack or a flat stomach, Absolute Abs will help you along your journey. 

As one of the best fitness classes, Absolute Abs will consist of weighted and bodyweight core training. You can expect the following exercises to crop up:

  • Crunches
  • Sit-ups
  • Planks
  • Russian twists
  • Leg raises
  • Mountain climbers… and so many more!

However, please note, these body goals are more attainable when regular exercise is combined with a healthy diet. If you’d improve in this area, we think you’d be interested in reading these 27 healthy eating tips

Where Can I Attend an Absolute Abs Class?

#25 best fitness classes

You’ll be able to book yourself into an Absolute Abs class at your local gym, for example as seen in the screenshot above, PureGym offers these sessions within their facilities.

These popular gym classes quickly fill out, so be sure to book a place early to ensure you’re not disappointed on the day. 

#26 - Trampolining Classes

#26 most popular fitness classes

Trampoline fitness class, also known as a ‘rebound’ class, is a great way to burn a lot of calories in a fun and engaging way.

What you can expect upon arriving at your first trampolining class is a studio containing several one-person trampolines. 

Your instructor will then break the session down, discussing possible safety issues that may arise during this process.

One of the most common concerns among new attendees is balance, but have no fear as many of these trampolines come with handlebars you can hold.

#26 popular types of gym classes

The instructor will then guide the class through a series of exercises while using the trampoline. These can include:

  • Star jumps
  • Twists 
  • High knees

A key benefit of group trampoline fitness classes is that performing each of these exercises is kinder to your joints than other classes such as HIIT. 

Therefore, if you’re someone who suffers from frequent or recurring joint pain, the padded cushion of the trampoline could allow you to exercise without fear of aggravating this discomfort. 

 

Where Can I Try Trampoline Classes? 

#26 types of fitness classes

Trampoline sessions are often held in gymnastic and dance studios, but we’d also recommend doing some research into specialist studios within your local area.

For example, BOUNCE studios in Essex promise to provide exceptional fitness-based trampolining classes for a variety of skill levels. This is an exceptionally popular fitness class that holds sessions in the following locations:

  • Canada
  • America 
  • Dubai 
  • New Zealand 
  • Australia 

Some gyms offer this service too, but due to the somewhat niche nature, it isn’t always guaranteed. 

#27 - Functional Fitness Classes

#27 popular gym classes

Functional fitness refers to the performing of exercises that train the body for everyday activities. 

Whilst somewhat similar to CrossFit, the two practices differ in the sense that no equipment is needed for functional fitness classes. 

Similarly, functional training incorporates a wide range of muscle groups, with the main intent of the popular fitness class being to train the entire body. 

An additional purpose of these classes is to improve the overall balance of clients.

#27 fitness gym class

This is achieved through a dedicated focus on your own body weight - when attending these popular fitness classes you’ll start to question what muscle is best for a specific exercise. 

One of the best examples of functional fitness is squatting, which we do at various points throughout our everyday life. 

Therefore, by strengthening the muscles related to these activities, functional fitness essentially reduces the risk of injuring oneself during everyday activities. 

 

Where Can I Try Functional Fitness Classes?

#27 final popular gym class

Working in a large group can be somewhat challenging within functional fitness classes, as certain individuals may need to strengthen different muscle groups in order to perform everyday tasks they struggle with.

For this reason, we’d recommend connecting with a group of friends who may suffer from a similar infliction, or alternately share a similar fitness goal.

This will also allow you to work with a group personal trainer, who can in turn conduct a tailored fitness program to help improve your functional fitness.

 

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What is the Most Popular Group Fitness Class in the UK? 

what is the most popular fitness class

Now that we’ve run through various some of the best gym classes and how you can get involved, you may be questioning what is considered to be the most popular example in the UK.

Yoga is thought to be the most popular group fitness class, not just in the UK, but the entire world too, with an estimated market of over £74 billion.

If you’d like to capitalise on this popularity and enter the industry for yourself, then why not enrol on OriGym’s Level 3 Yoga Instructor course.

Here, you can earn essential skills and acquire key knowledge, all of which is required for forming a successful career within the group fitness industry. 

How Much Do Popular Fitness Classes Cost? 

how much do popular fitness classes cost

The price of a fitness class is dependent on a variety of factors, for this reason it’s hard for us to truly give a definitive answer.

If you’re a member of a gym or leisure centre, you may find that fitness classes are included in the price of your subscription. 

Alternatively, there could be a small fee of anywhere between £2-7 added on top of your existing membership

If you’re attending a privately organised fitness class, the price will also vary on how long the session is or if specialised equipment is used for the event.

thinking about popular fitness classes

In this instance, we’d advise you to do your own research on the appropriate sites or social media pages, both of which should provide you with this information. 

Alternatively, some classes such as running groups may be free to join, but may ask for donations to contribute towards trips and excursions. 

So, while we’re unable to provide a definitive average cost of a fitness class, there are most certainly options available to you that will suit any budget.

Before You Go!

Hopefully, this list of the most popular group fitness classes has provided you with some insight and inspiration! 

Remember, each of the classes featured within this list offers unique and exciting benefits that could improve the life of any fitness enthusiast. 

Don’t be afraid to try a number of different practices, in order to find one that works best for you. 

Remember, if you’d like to personally lead these classes you’ll need to first acquire a Personal Training diploma

At OriGym the quality of our Ofqual-regulated training comes with full CIMSPA accreditation. This ensures that you have key theoretical and practical knowledge in areas such as Anatomy and Physiology, which will help when formulating your classes. 

Written by Emily Evans

Content Writer & Fitness Enthusiast

Emily studied English Language and Literature at the University of Sheffield, graduating in 2021 with a 2:1 BA honours degree. Alongside her degree, she also gained experience in student publication as Forge Press’ Lifestyle Editor and Deputy Editor for Post-Production. This is where her love for content writing stemmed from, which also led her to OriGym. Outside of her work, Emily will either be found on a long hike, at the gym or making a mess trying new healthy recipes in her kitchen!

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