How I became a group fitness instructor at my campus gym, and why I love it.
Everybody is buzzing about group fitness classes these days—your friends are doing it, that fitness guru on Instagram is doing it, and even your mom is doing it. It’s a fitness frenzy that you can’t seem to escape, but is it really all that it’s talked up to be?
In my opinion, YES.
Group fitness classes have been popular for years, and for good reason. They’re fun, fast-paced classes that make working out feel like less of a chore and make exercise more enjoyable. Group fitness classes ensure that you stay safe and practice good form, which are essential practices to keep in mind to get a good workout. The upbeat class environment and an outgoing instructor encourage you to push yourself and stay motivated, even when you want to quit.
I’m a group fitness instructor at my gym, and it has completely changed the way I view fitness and healthy living.
Around this time last year, I decided that I wanted to take my passion for fitness to the next level. So what did I do? I started the process of becoming a group fitness instructor. If I became certified, I would teach spin classes for my university’s campus recreation center.
Here’s how the process went:
I first took a daylong workshop with a Master Instructor. This included two rides on top of lectures about class building, safety, bike setup, and how to encourage and motivate participants. The workshop concluded with an online test, on which I had to get a passing grade to become completely certified. Passing the test made me a SPINNING ® instructor with Mad Dogg Athletics.
The next step was to work with an experienced instructor at my school who would act as my mentor. I began to guest-teach parts of their classes and I got more comfortable being in the role of the instructor rather than the participant. I would teach different parts of each ride…anything from the safety speech, the warm-up, different drills, all the way to cool-down or stretching. I found that picking the music was the most fun part of it, and it was most challenging to get out of my comfort zone and get up in front of the class.
After about three months of practice and amazing advice and support from my mentors, I was ready to audition in front of the group fitness coordinator. My mentors were experienced spinners who gave me advice not only on how to teach a great class, but also on how to be authentic to myself in my pursuit of fitness. They taught some of the best classes I have ever taken-they were challenging and the way they taught made me dig deeper to get the most out of every workout; both mentally and physically. My audition was so nerve-wracking—I had to teach the entire class in front of a full class of regular spinners. Fortunately, my hard work paid off! My coordinator was so impressed with my class and I was hired as a group fitness instructor.
So now what?
I’m now teaching 4 classes a week and I absolutely love it. It makes me so happy to be the person who can encourage healthy lifestyles and show my participants how much they are able to accomplish if they put their minds to it. I crushed so many of my fitness goals through spinning, and I want to show anyone that comes to my class that they can do it too! I end every class with, “I don’t give easy rides, because I know how effective spinning can be if you work at it. You’re only going to get better and stronger from here, so keep trying, because you’re worth it.” I believe that if I can impact even one person’s life through fitness, then I’ve done my job right.
So if you’re ever in Binghamton, stop by for a spin class! I guarantee it’ll be a fun time and it’s the absolute best way to sweat.
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