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Reuters/Toby Melville

The psychological and social benefits of online workouts

Sarah Todd
Member exclusive by Sarah Todd for The home fitness boom

Exercise is good for us. But group exercise may be even better. Feeling accountable to our running buddies or fellow yogis keeps us motivated and committed to our routines in ways that solo sessions often don’t. Research also suggests that working out with others has a more calming effect, and a greater impact on stress and well-being than exercising alone.

In the era of social distancing and mandatory lockdowns, crowding into gyms and studios for communal cardio isn’t possible. It may, however, be possible to capture some elements of the group experience via online exercise classes from Peloton, Mirror, Daily Burn, and more. But when it comes to the mental and emotional aspects of group classes, how do these home-fitness options stack up against the IRL kind?

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