Author ORCID Identifier
International Journal of Human-Computer Studies
Exercising in a group context effectively motivates physical activity participation. However, gyms and health clubs closed in-person services due to the COVID-19 global pandemic. Online group exercise classes became an emerging service that attracted many participants. Exercisers are predicted to continue participation even after the restriction is lifted. However, it is unclear how such transition influenced exercisers’ and fitness instructors’ experiences. In this study, we conducted interviews with 13 exercisers and 11 fitness instructors who participated in synchronous online group exercise classes. We identified the opportunities and challenges that the participants faced in different types of social interactions, as well as how technology limited or facilitated participants’ experiences. We reported an increase in responsibilities that the instructors need to take on. The online context also expanded the stakeholders in the social interactions by including other household members. We contributed to the HCI and CSCW community by presenting how social interactions occur in the online group exercise context, reporting the challenges and opportunities in transitioning social interactions from in-person to the online context, as well as proposing design implications to alleviate these challenges and realize the opportunities of the online context.
Fanlu Gui, Chun-Hua Tsai, Alexis Vajda, John M. Carroll, Workout connections: Investigating social interactions in online group exercise classes. International Journal of Human-Computer Studies, 166, 2022, 102870, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhcs.2022.102870.
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