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The Power of Training Partners

Why do people train with others? What makes a small group of two or three people when training more effective? Why do professional athletes train with a partner, or a one-on-one coach?

People want a more powerful workout.

The definition of power according to Webster’s is having an “ability to act or produce an effect.” (1) Without a doubt, when you workout with friends and family or a training partner, the training sessions will be more intense, and therefore more effective. Thus, workouts are more powerful when you train with others. When someone is there to encourage you to go one more rep or to add weight to the stack, or to hold that isometric ten seconds longer, you are likely to do it, even when that trainer is on a screen. When there is a virtual trainer and people with you in an infrared sauna, you can bank that you will get an intense workout.

I can’t tell you how many times either myself or one of my training partners has successfully pushed the other to do more while cycling in the sauna, or other infrared workouts that involve things like a wall sit! It happens every time I train with a partner. It’s just a fact that you train harder in the presence of another human, even if they aren’t your official training partner and they are just there training next to you. You perform at a higher level when you are in close proximity to people.

Why is this true? The first answer is accountability. A training partner (or just another human next to you) will up the accountability of your fitness game. Your partner will not want to let you down, and vice versa, when it comes to showing up for workouts and when it comes to workout performance of the reps and completion of the entire sessions. Humans naturally want to do their best when around others in a fitness session. The second answer is fun. It is more fun when you train with others. When a workout is fun then it will be less of a grind. Why not make trips to the gym more fun? The camaraderie is what makes it fun. The third answer is accomplishment. The sense of accomplishment is just better when shared as success with others and/or your training partner(s).

So, if your goal, and it should be your goal, is to perform your workouts at the highest level that you possibly can, then you should consider finding a training partner, or two. Training with one or two (any more is a crowd) partners will up the power of your game, guaranteed.

(1) https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/power?utm_campaign=sd&utm_medium=serp&utm_source=jsonld
Stephen P. Smith, MA
CEO and Creator of HOTWORX, Author, Former National Collegiate Bodybuilding Champion and Arena Football Player, Certified Professional Trainer