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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – If you’re looking to get into shape this new year, you may want to try working out in a group.

Elizabeth Kelly, a college student, said an exercise class not only help you stay in shape but can relieve stress as well.

“School and work and applications and whatever else is going on and be in the moment and let your body take over. For an hour – listen to what the instructor is telling you to do,” she said.

A new study from the New England College of Osteopathic Medicine found that working out in groups can have bigger benefits compared to exercising alone.

“Those who participated in group exercise had a 12-26% improvement in mental, physical, and emotional quality of life,” said lead researcher Dr. Dayna Yorks.

The study followed about 70 medical students for three months. Participants could choose to work out in a group, by themselves, or not at all. Researchers found only those exercising in a group reported emotional and physical improvements.

“The real power of group exercise is connection. It’s an opportunity for people to connect with each other, connect with their bodies in a positive way,” said Yorks.

Participants who exercised in groups spent 30 minutes at least once a week doing a core strengthening and functional fitness training program.

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