Yorkshire Times
A Voice of the Free Press
1:00 AM 10th February 2024

Is Exercising With Your Partner Beneficial?

Exercise doesn't have to be solitary. Sharing the experience with a partner can turn an ordinary workout into a fun couple’s activity, making it more enjoyable. And, if you’re reluctant to work out or often put it off, doing it together can turn exercise into something to look forward to.

What’s more, working out as a pair can strengthen your bond and improve your relationship. Not only does it add an element of camaraderie, but it comes with a bunch of physical benefits too. Here share their insight.

What are the fitness benefits of working out together?

Having a workout buddy can significantly increase your motivation and knowing that someone is counting on you to show up can be a powerful incentive to stick to your fitness routine. Partnerships thrive on accountability, so when you commit to working out together, you're more likely to stay consistent and achieve your fitness goals. It's harder to hit the snooze button when your partner is waiting for you at the gym or park.

Are you a competitive couple? It’s a good idea to embrace this if you are, as a little friendly competition between you both can push you to work even harder. Whether it's a running race or a weightlifting challenge, having a partner to compete with can make your workouts more engaging.

But fitness isn’t just about pushing your body to the limit — you also need to do it properly in order to get the most out of it, as well as to prevent burnout and pain that could delay your fitness journey. Fortunately, another perk of having a workout buddy is built-in form checks. Your partner can provide feedback and make sure you're performing exercises correctly, reducing the risk of injury and ensuring maximum effectiveness.

Example exercises for couples

There are plenty of exercises you can do as a couple, from doing your regular workout routines side-by-side to choosing activities that involve another person. Below are a few ideas to get you started on your couple’s fitness journey.

Partner squats: Stand facing each other and perform squats simultaneously. It's a great lower-body workout, and you can use each other for balance.
Medicine ball pass: Sit facing each other, engaging your core. Pass a medicine ball back and forth, adding resistance to your ab workout.
Partner push-ups: Get into a plank position facing each other. As one person does a push-up, the other extends a hand for a high-five. This adds a fun element to a classic exercise.
Tandem cycling: Cycling is not only a great cardio exercise but also an excellent way to explore your surroundings together. Tandem bikes make it a shared adventure.
Running/ jogging: Lace up your trainers and hit the pavement together. Running side by side allows for conversation and mutual encouragement.
Dance workouts: Join a dance class or follow dance workout videos together. It's a fantastic way to improve cardiovascular health while having a blast.
Yoga for two: Explore partner yoga poses that involve cooperation and balance. It not only enhances flexibility and strength, but also builds trust between partners.
Couples' circuit training: Design a circuit workout with different stations. Alternate between exercises and challenge each other to complete the circuit efficiently.

Is working out together good for your relationship?

To find out whether working out together is good for your relationship as well as for hitting your fitness goals, we hear from professional relationship coach Gemma Nice.

Can working out as a couple strengthen your bond?

Yes, working out as a couple can really strengthen your bond because you are moving your body. This releases endorphins and serotonin, the calming and happy hormones, which in turn can make you feel closer to each other. It allows you to form bonds which may have been lost due to miscommunication or tension, and this will lead to increased happiness within the relationship. It creates nonverbal matching which means you are more in tune with each other.

When you’re motivating each other to stay on track, it allows you to feel closer and have more intimacy within the relationship. You may also have more fun together which, if you are struggling with this element within the relationship, can restore it. If one or both of you suffer with your mental health, exercise is a great way to overcome these thoughts and feelings.

Encourage each other to try new things and to switch it up every few weeks. Your body will plateau, and you will then need to switch up the exercises you do. Keep each other accountable for your actions within the gym. Be supportive of each other and listen.

How does exercise compare to other couples’ activities?

A couples’ workout compares to other activities differently because you both are emotionally invested in each other, and when you work out together, that bond becomes stronger. You can be competitive and push each other to your limits. This forms a better trust bond and allows each of you to feel fully connected within the relationship.

You have more motivation, get up and drive within you both and you both want to see each other succeed. Your best interests are within each other. You help each other to push through your current fitness levels and goals to reach a high point, and you also push yourself harder than you would in any other activity.

My husband and I used to do this all this time. We’d compete against each other dead lifting and have fun. You spend a different kind of quality time with each other as you are helping to move your bodies more.

How do you solve conflicts that might crop up when working out as a couple? E.g., if one partner has lower fitness levels, or one partner wants to work out much more than the other one?

Yes, this comes up quite a bit with my clients. One who is slightly fitter wants to push the other through and past their comfort zone, which is great, but the other has resistance against that because they might feel they can’t do it. This can cause arguments between the two.

Communication is key here and each person should be open and honest and say how they feel. If one partner wants to work out more than the other, again communication is key because you need to let each other have your own space and time away from the relationship. It might be that one person wants to do yoga and the other wants to have a gym session. This is good, as you are setting boundaries with each other and allowing each other to do your own thing. It gives you other things to talk about within the relationship.

Compromising is also important. Stay on the same path you set out and agreed on but have boundaries and compromise with each other. Allow each other to talk and be respectful of each other’s decisions. Discussing where you both are within your fitness journey allows you to get to the root of any problems and will stop conflict coming up.

Being open to listening to each other is another huge one which needs to be addressed, especially within the gym environment. Yes, you can push each other to your boundaries but also if your partner wants to stop, listen to that, and don’t push further. Come to agreement on where you are right now in your exercise journey and allow each other to talk.

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