The Power of Community

We explore sharing goals, ambitions and connection through fitness. Community is the cornerstone of fitness, and we explore just why it's so important.
November 21, 2022

As the dust settles on the brilliant London and New York marathons, the aftermath highlights just how important community is in fitness. Images of friends and family waiting for hours just to support a runner for that split second. It’s a wonderful thing seeing fitness bringing people together. With sports participation at an all-time high, now more than ever, you can forge lifelong friendships through fitness.

Whether it’s the familiar faces from your weekly 7am gym class, or the run club members who you share that weekend run with, the importance of community stands alone in the world of fitness.


Why is community important?


In all aspects of life, being part of a strong community is the lynchpin of happiness. Community drives connection, laughter, and likeminded perspective. For the most part, community drives us to be better, pushing us to achieve the best version of ourselves. We can learn from others, gain experience, and build real friendships. Fitness helps tie all this together.




Motivation, especially in fitness, often relies on others. That early morning strength class becomes a lot easier when your friend is joining you. Just as that after work run becomes less of a chore when you're part of a run club, and you know you’re going to have good conversations and laughter. The training itself becomes less of a burden and more of a fun activity to share among friends.

Having a training partner can also keep you accountable. It helps to have someone who is highly motivated, someone that will push you to help you achieve your goals.

Staying consistent through your training isn’t straightforward. It’s something that is so easy to fall out of, but having that friend, or group of friends makes staying on track far easier.



Shared Goals


When you’re training as a group, you often share the same goals as those around you. Even if it’s not a competitive goal like training for a marathon, a lot of the time we all want to get better, stronger and faster. This shared perspective helps push us further, make each other better and leads to healthy competition.

If the goal is competitive, like training for a marathon, it’s always great to have that balance between training alone, but also relying on other people with the same goal to help push you on those days you don’t want to train.

The great thing about a community is you can also learn from others. There isn't any competition, just groups of people helping each other to improve.



Social aspect


Of course, community is not just about motivation and reaching goals. In fact, we’d argue that the fitness community is built on the foundation of building relationships. The emergence and increasing popularity of running clubs has been a clear example of this.

When you join a running club, you’re entering into a new domain; one that challenges you physically, but stimulates you mentally. As humans we thrive off human connection, and building relationships with like-minded people helps boost serotonin, lower stress and allow you to reach a level of fulfilment.

Most run groups have runners of varying ability. Because of this, slotting in within the group becomes quite natural as you find your pace amongst the other runners. This makes integrating and socialising that much easier as you share something in common with those around you, speed.

The most significant part of social run clubs, or fitness clubs/classes in general are the friends you can make. Whether you’re new to an area, or new to training, they give you the opportunity to meet people you probably would never have met. You immediately have something in common, a shared passion for fitness and the intention of progression.


Words from the street


Torsa caught up with two runners from prominent run crews Snappy Runners and mrc Paris to get their thoughts on the importance of community in running, and their personal journey with running.

Harley Steward - Snappy Runners 


Hi Harley, why did you start running?

I started a couple of years ago now to help improve my fitness. I’d tried loads of other types of sport before but nothing had clicked long term


Why do you run now?

Each run has its own purpose for me now, sometimes it’s social and sometimes its functional. This last year I’ve been prioritising enjoyment above all, whether that’s a chatty plod with mates or a hard session at the track can change on the day.


What does a running community give you that running alone doesn’t?

It gives you a reason to show up. I’ve never once looked outside, saw the rain, and thought “not today” because I had that reason. It also opens you up to new perspectives, people showing you the city through their lens. I’ve explored Manchester more in the last 12 months than I have in the last 12 years.

It also helps surround you with people who have common goals/interests if that’s your thing.


What do you enjoy most about running as part of a crew?

I used to think of running as a chore, something I have to do not something I want to do. Running with other people changed that, now it’s something I genuinely look forward to as the run is only half the reason I leave the house. The other 50% is seeing friends/catching up.


What has running taught you about yourself?

It’s taught me that I need a goal or something positive to work towards. It doesn’t have to be a race, but could be a creative or community project, something I am passionate about as that is when I’m the best version of myself.


What does the future hold for Snappy Runners?

Hopefully we continue to keep growing! We’ve got an ace group of people, so really excited to build on those foundations. There’re a few things in the pipeline - holidays, races and the big one-year anniversary celebration… stay tuned!


Favourite post run pastry?

100% got to be anything involving cinnamon 


Follow Snappy Runners on Instagram



Anthony M - mrc Paris


Hi Anthony, why did you start running?

I have always been very sporty, but I wasn't sure what sport I wanted to commit to at first. I was lucky enough to have a very sporty father who always knew how to get me interested and motivated to move, whether it was skiing, biking, and of course running. That's how I started: by following him on official races or during his training sessions on steep paths. He lives on the Côte d'Azur; there are plenty of beautiful trails, which helps a lot!

Why do you run now?

We all have our reasons for running, and they're all valid. I know that when I run, I feel like I can conquer the world—and it's because of the way it changes my mindset. I became a father recently and had the tendency to leave the sport aside, but today I run to get back in shape and try to continue living a good life. The second reason is that I have never found anything more efficient to change my mind. I can go for a one hour run and everything is better: I tend to have clearer ideas and my sleep also improves.

What does a running community give you that running alone doesn't?

I have been a part of the mrc running club for about 8 years now. In that time, I have learned a lot about myself and about running in general. While I have always been an active person, I never really thought of myself as a "runner". Running was just something I did during my lunch break or on the weekends to stay healthy. But when I joined this running club, it changed everything. For me, joining the club has brought me a lot of benefits. It has helped me improve by letting myself be guided by people who are much more experienced and gifted than I am. It has allowed me to travel to Berlin, Bergamo, and Cape Town with the club to meet other athletes or attend iconic races. And most importantly, it gave me the opportunity to meet a lot of people; people with whom I became close friends; people with whom I had work; in short, people I might not have had the chance to meet elsewhere.

What has running taught you about yourself?

I've come to understand that fun and perseverance must coexist in the things I do in life. Only in this way can I be proud of what I do. Running has been a great help to me. It has helped me understand that it's not about being the best, but about persevering until the end. That's what makes you feel proud of yourself.

Favourite place or route you have run?

I love to run late at night. It's wonderful to get out and enjoy the city, but also to be able to do it in a way that doesn't disturb anyone else. In particular, I love to run through a course that passes by the Louvre and finishes with a zigzag between the small lanes of the Marais.

How did mrc start?

Our club started with my friends, who I shared a big flat in the Marais with. We were going out a lot at the time, and it became clear that we needed to find a balance. So we started to run regularly together once or twice a week. At that point, we all had an aesthetic appreciation for this sport, so it brought us closer and we wanted to go to the next step: organizing sessions for small groups (about 20 people), looking for sponsorships, and then finding places that could welcome us. The craze was quick! Today—and since 2014—the recipe still works: The club continues to meet every week, and we have an incredible HQ where we finish all our runs around drinks. It's an amazing place where we now host conferences as well:

What does the future hold for MRC?

We are very excited to see what the future of the running club has in store. We're already so lucky to have such an amazing community, and we're looking forward to continuing to build on that with new members and new ideas. We're also really excited about working with brands in the future. Who knows what might happen? There could be a lot of surprises

Favourite post run pastry?

I love to eat all kinds of food, but my favorite is Kanelbullar, Swedish buns with cinnamon and cardamom. I eat them so much that sometimes I feel like they're taking over my life! But they're just so good. The next time you come to Paris, let's try this toghether.
mrc paris


Follow mrc Paris on Instagram 


Join a community


Of course, community does't just have to come from just running clubs. Although, if you are a runner, we recommend Strava as a great app to find run clubs, track your progress and enter challenges. Torsa has just joined as a new club. Click on this link to join us as we share some exciting challenges, events and things in the future.

For us, training can come in many forms. Whether it's a local OLY gym, cycling club or surf group, these places thrive off connection and community. Fitness has a special way of bringing people together; whether it's sharing stories, laughter or goals.