Make Fitness Fun Again—Most Popular Group Fitness Programs

When it comes to running a successful personal training business, your top priority is ensuring that each client you work with gets proper attention, accurate information, and is working hard to meet the goals you both set out for them.

As a professional, you likely tend to stay away from fad-diets and trendy workouts that won’t help your client move in a positive direction, but with the rapid proliferation of fitness trends, especially with the help of social media, it might seem like you’re fighting an everyday battle against brand new, trendy workouts.

That’s not always a bad thing, though.

There’s something to be said for staying up-to-date on the latest and greatest fitness trends that rapidly sweep gym culture.

Staying in-the-know about what’s hot can help you keep your clients on track with meeting their goals and allow you to advise against fads that will slow them down.

But being knowledgeable about fitness trends can do more than that – it can also help you implement new, and fun ways, to keep your clients motivated and to make fitness fun again.

So, what is the next-big-thing in fitness trends for 2018?

Right now, group fitness is a hot topic, and there are tons of fun, new classes that could be a boom to your personal training business.

Here are a few of our favorite group classes that you should know about:

Orange Theory Fitness Group Classes

If you’re a personal trainer who hasn’t heard of the Orange Theory Fitness craze, you’re likely not keeping up with your personal training research well enough – all that to say, this is an insanely popular and fast-moving fitness trend that’s sweeping the nation.

Orange Theory Fitness has recently landed on the 500 list of fastest growing companies in America, and with about 700 plus locations worldwide it’s no wonder that it has.

But what is Orange Theory, exactly?

OTF is a group class built around the concept of excess post exercise oxygen consumption that focuses on heart rate monitoring.

The design is to maintain a target zone that stimulates your clients’ metabolism and energy, and it claims to burn about 500-1,000 calories in 60 minutes of workout, then continue burning calories at a higher percentage once that workout is over (for up to 36 hours post exercise).

This sort of class is typically designed with anywhere from 6-20 people in the group.

This is an exercise fad that’s sweeping the nation in a business format, and while it could be a profitable program to add to your personal training repertoire, there’s a catch.

You’d have to be certified by orange theory and work within an orange theory facility to teach this program.

If you run a flexible business from your home and wouldn’t mind adding in an orange theory group fitness class to your schedule, this might be the perfect addition for you!


HIIT Classes, or high intensity interval classes, are one of the newest group training classes to hit the fitness industry.

Wildly popular with folks who can’t stand the rigorous longevity of traditional cardio, HIIT is a training technique that gives an all-out, one hundred percent effort through quick, but intense, bursts of exercise followed by rest periods.

The neatest thing about HIIT Group classes?

They’re varied types of exercises, so, unlike many specialized workouts, HIIT workouts are easily manipulated and tweaked to be modified for all fitness levels.

That means that adding in HIIT to group exercise classes will offer modifications for everyone – you won’t have set aside separate class times for clients who are novice or more advanced.

Everyone can easily work together.

Additionally, these HIIT programs are highly customizable, so, once you’re licensed and knowledgeable, able to determine what kind of clientele you’re interested in working with and what their specific needs, you can custom build your own group class.

If you’re looking to offer a class that boosts aerobic and anaerobic fitness, can improve blood pressure and cardiovascular health, and can burn abdominal fats while maintaining muscle mass (which, few cardio programs can directly promise), then HIIT classes are likely a good addition to your personal training repertoire.

Look into getting certified, talk to your clients about their interest levels, and see if it fits in with your niche.


It seems that you can’t turn around in the fitness industry without hearing someone discuss the all-wonderful benefits of the barre class they attended last week – but what exactly is barre, and why should you care about it?

Let’s start with an explanation of what barre is, first.

Barre classes are fitness classes that are ballet-inspired.

These classes incorporate the ballet barre, some ballerina-esque moves, Pilates, dance, yoga, and functional training all choreographed to motivating and interesting music.

Barre is designed to use small movements to sculpt, slim, and stretch your body, and it’s been noted as a “kind to joints, hard on muscle” type of program.

People are going wild for barre group exercises because they can be a fun way to get a total body workout in, allow for modifications for all levels, and provide some relief from the exercising norm that some of your clients might find mundane.

If you’re looking for ways to offer your clients strength building, increased flexibility, rapid results, and better ranges of motion, getting certified as a barre instructor might be the next step for your personal training business.

Cardio Kickboxing

A tried and true group fitness class, cardio kickboxing remains a popular choice for trainers who are looking to add a little something extra to their group class offerings.

This class offers high-energy workout challenges for both beginners and elite athletes, allowing your clients the chance to build stamina, improve their coordination, gain flexibility, and bond with your other clients.

Kickboxing classes can be a great way to offer cardio in a non-traditional format to your clientele – couple that with some fun music, a few energetic clients, and your newly-licensed self and you’re likely to create a group fitness course that your current clients won’t be able to deny.

Who knows? Adding in a new, exciting group class like kickboxing could even draw in brand new clients that don’t necessarily fit the niche you’ve currently been developing.

Meet The Author:

Parker Franklin

Parker, IFG’s Brand Manager since 2022, began his wellness journey in 2020, leading to a significant personal transformation. He holds a journalism degree from Murray State University and started his career as an award-winning journalist in western Kentucky before transitioning into marketing and PR.

At IFG, Parker is responsible for writing content, managing The Fit newsletter, and overseeing promotions and collaborations with affiliate fitness organizations.

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