The rise of the couple workout
To many, fitness is a solo pursuit. Something we do for ourselves. By ourselves. And while there is advantage in independence, there is also a case for ‘strength in numbers’ when it comes to working out. According to experts, this is particularly the case if we work out with our partner or spouse. It’s no wonder, then, that couple fitness is a growing health trend, with celebrity advocates including Louise Thompson and Ryan Libbey spearheading the ‘sweat together, stay together’ formula.
Those who have already caught on can apparently expect more happiness, and more satisfaction within their couple relationship*. Part of the mechanism is that coordinating exercises leads to ‘nonverbal matching’ (aka. mimicry) which experts say helps partners become more emotionally attuned***. From a performance stance, social psychology indicates that just the benefit of some company alone is often enough to increase exercise ability**. Then of course there’s the advantage of having an alternative set of abilities/preferences to accommodate, which in turn ensures a varied and interesting workout. One partner might lean towards squats, and the other stretching, for example, but by joining forces, the limits of these familiar comfort zones are repeatedly challenged... with all-round beneficial effects!
*Aron, Norman, Aron, & Heyman, 2000). **Zajonc, 1965 ***Stel & Vonk, 2010 Read more