Doing exercise with a friend or acquaintance is a common recommendation that is given to older adults to make sure they don’t skip out on exercise such as their daily walk. When you exercise with someone daily, it is harder to skip the exercise when there is someone waiting on you.
While exercising with a buddy motivates people, it can also increase the amount of physical activity that is done as well as the intensity of the exercise. One study found that participating in aerobic exercise with a friend motivated people to exercise harder and longer, compared to those exercising alone. This showed that it improved overall fitness results for older adults.
An ideal fitness partner would be someone who may be in slightly better shape than you are. Research shows that a partner’s fitness habits can rub off on us, and inspire us to increase the amount that we exercise.
Researchers found that exercising with a partner who is more fit than you could increase your workout time and intensity by as much as 200%.
Having a daily exercise partner can also provide support for the regular emotional and social contact that is critical to one’s health.
Source: American Association of Retired Persons (AARP)