There’s Strength in Numbers

There's Strength in Numbers: Small-Group Training at East Bank Club

You might have noticed a relatively new phenomenon that is gaining in popularity and making an impact at East Bank Club: Small-Group Training. These classes often involve an EBC personal trainer leading a handful of dedicated participants through a progressive workout with “high fives” and “you can do its” abounding.

Small-Group Training is one of the most exciting fitness trends in recent years. It’s a hybrid workout that combines the best features of personal training and group exercise. Since class size is capped (often in the 6 to 12 participant range), personal instruction with attention to form, special needs (like injuries) and individual goals is possible within a setting that generates high energy and motivation. Classes run the gamut from HIIT (high intensity interval training) to Pilates, and from TRX training to yoga.

Gretchen Collins, Director of Fitness at East Bank Club, finds that Small-Group Training has a strong and loyal following. “Once our members try it, many find themselves hooked,” she explains. “The combination of personal attention, group support and phenomenal results is powerful, and people love it.”

Here are some of the key benefits of Small Group Training that make it so popular and effective:


The restricted class size of Small-Group Training makes personal attention truly possible. Trainers modify the workouts for individuals at different fitness levels, enabling all to join in and do the exercises at their peak performance level. Since trainers get to know participants’ weak points, they can develop strategies to work around these tenuous areas and keep everyone exercising in a safe manner.

Progressive Instruction

Small-Group Training classes are progressive and build on techniques taught in previous sessions. Consequently, increasing results are evident as the weeks go by. For example, a sedentary beginner can enroll in the eight-week Boot Camp program and expect to finish a 5k run by the end of the program. The progressive approach of Small-Group Training makes results more defined and attainable.


A group atmosphere creates accountability. Small class sizes generate unity among participants and encourage mutual support. If someone misses a few classes in a row, it’s not uncommon to hear, “Hey, where have you been?” Or if it’s your first time in a class, you might hear, “See you next time… you’re coming back, right?” at the end of the session. This good-natured support leads to one of the most appealing aspects of Small-Group Training – a strong adherence to the commitment of showing up. As we all know, showing up can be the most challenging and the most critical step in maintaining a fitness routine. Small-Group Training creates the foundation for excellent fitness habits.


Small-Group Training classes inspire a genuine feeling of camaraderie that includes participants rooting for each other to succeed. Light competition can be part of the equation as well, with a little smack-talking thrown in for good measure, but all in the spirit of fun andsupport. Because team members are aware of each others’ goals, milestones are championed and celebrated. Friendships build over time, and it’s not unusual to see classes end with participants heading to the Grill to grab a snack together.

Top-Notch Instruction

While all fitness professionals at East Bank Club have extensive fitness training and education, the Small-Group Training instructors are in a league of their own. All are certified by a nationally recognized personal training organization, and have earned a bachelor’s degree in kinesiology or a related field. On average, these trainers have between five to seven years of experience. In addition, these trainers have been selected to teach Small-Group Training classes because they have strong leadership skills and a dynamic presence that is motivating and inspirational to participants.

Access to New Tools

East Bank Club group exercise classes utilize a variety of equipment, but there are limits to what’s available in large numbers. Small-Group Training classes use equipment like football sleds, tires and TRX straps to challenge participants and enable them to try new things. Boredom and routine is never an option in a Small-Group Training class!


The average Small-Group Training class costs between $10 and $20 per class, making it an exceptional value that many find possible to do multiple times per week. Some members supplement a weekly personal training session with two to three additional Small-Group Training classes. The fitness staff at the Club can help you find the right balance to meet your goals and stay within your budget.

Classes are listed on the online calendar or available in a more comprehensive format here. Registration is taken at the Reservation Desk at (312) 527-5800, extension 222, or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). If you’re new to Small Group Training, stop by the Fitness office to determine your goals and schedule your first class.


East Bank Club | December 2016