What Is It?

Conformity by definition from SimplyPsychology  is “a type of social influence involving a change in belief or behavior in order to fit in with a group.” Coser also mentions conformity as “two dimensional, on one hand conformity is imbedded in human nature, it is internal and individual: Man has instinct capacity to internalize the values of the society, group and community to which he belongs, so as to create a sense of belongingness and self-identity.” All and all conformity is a driving force in the human psyche to want to belong and be accepted by their surrounding peers, either it be positive influence or negative. A famous study by Solomon Asch conducted an experiment to show this innate need of acceptance into the light with his conformity line test. According to SimplyPsychology in 1951 Asch used a laboratory to study conformity using fifty male students from Swarthmore College to participate in a “vision test” Asch put one naive person not aware to the situation as a set up to a group of individuals that we in on the experiment. Everyone then had to say aloud which line in a set of three matched the line on another card. SimplyPsychology mentions after 18 trials with 12 of them the group giving the correct answer the results stated that on average one third or 32% of the participants conformed at least 25% of the time, and over the twelve critical questions about 75% conformed at least once and 25% did not conform to the group at all.

How Can It Affect Me?

A study conducted by Shea, C.H., Wulf, G., and Whitacre, C.A. in 1999 showed that both efficiency and effectiveness of training was enhanced through the use of dyad training. In the experiment, there were two groups; a dyad group (meaning two or more participants trained at the same time) and an individual group. The experiment conducted had each group practice a skill and noticed that the dyad group performed the task better and faster in the retention test. The study’s results show that having a partner or a group of people performing the same task enhances learning a skill and also is more motivating. Being motivated can have a large impact on whether or not a person continues to do a skill, like exercising.

Conformity is a great way to get active and become social. Yoga about five years ago was an extremely rare form of exercise. Not many people use to participate in yoga but one day it became a thing. A group of individuals started to rave about how great yoga is for the body and got others to join in on the fun (sort of like a domino effect). It became the new and more socially acceptable form of exercise. Now, everyone is wearing yoga pants and is aware of the fun benefits behind yoga. Yoga allows an individual to get active while giving you a chance to become more social. Conformity can be used in many different ways. It can lead a group to rule the world or as simple as getting people active. It takes one individual to start a movement!

How Can I Apply It To

My Life?

One way to apply the idea of group exercise to your everyday life is to find friends or family that share the same goals you do, whether it be for a specific race or event, to lose weight, or to simply improve your overall quality of life. There are many websites such as RunnerSpace , where you can find different races or running events all over the country, or Groupon ,where you can find different discounts on things such as yoga classes, dance classes, and other fun activities. Other businesses such as Z-spot are very convenient because they offer a variety of different classes where you can drop in and sign up rather than pay monthly rates, and classes within gyms are always nice because they follow specific and usually consistent schedules. In any situation however, finding someone who has the same goals that you do is usually the best motivation.

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