We have all had that dream. You know. You show up to teach your packed class and your music won’t play, your cycling shoes aren’t in your bag and you’re naked. In a previous post, Summer shared ways to survive those nightmares by always having your “instructor survival kit“, but what happens when even that fails you? Let’s talk about real horror stories and how to deal with them!
1. Your iPod, phone, or tablet died
You forgot your charger so now there is no music! Dig in your gym bag for that long lost CD you know you stored in there. Not there? Then it’s time to think outside of the box! Look for other areas to utilize like a basketball court, track, or even grassy knoll near the gym. Now, go back to the basics! Squats, lunges, planks and push-ups are all extremely versatile and can be done anywhere!
Remember, fitness can be fun! Use team or partner drills for your class. They will be laughing and communicating with each other that music won’t even be missed! Start off with something as simple as “Simon Says” or “Memory.”
2. Wait, what’s next? Did you completely forget the choreography?
People make mistakes! It happens all the time. Laugh, make a joke and move on with class! Still can’t remember? Go back to an “oldie but goodie” song or routine. The familiar moves will boost your confidence back up!
Teaching a pre-choreographed class and can’t remember what to do? Know the purpose of that track, and just keep them doing moves that are commonly done in that track. They won’t know the difference, and will be happy because they are working out!
3. You have a person in the front row of your class who marches to the beat of her/his own drummer
So much she/he isn’t even doing the same exercise you are teaching. It’s distracting and making you lose focus. Try just a few cues that encourage class unity like “everyone altogether now” or “let’s move as one unit” to see if you can bring your solo star back to your class plan.
Change lines! Tell the class that everyone will have a chance to be in the front row in today’s class. Rotate lines with each dance song, exercise, or drill. Cue for other participants to focus on themselves, close their eyes or race against themselves. Distract the class from this person by turning the focus from external to internal.
4. Your gym bag was not packed accordingly for today’s class
You’re missing your cycle shoes and sports bra! This is the perfect time to practice your coaching skills! Don’t view this as a problematic situation, but rather a learning experience where you can focus more on your cueing, visual and auditory.
When we are in the front of the room demonstrating the exercises, we sometimes miss those people in the back of the room. Now that you aren’t focusing on completing the exercises yourself, you can walk around the room and start connecting with the people you may not get to speak to often. Use this time to create a better connection with your participants.
Finally! The perfect day to work on those hard-to-perform moves! Yes, this is a great time to move around the room and help your participants with their form, especially on moves you have been scared to implement in your class because of the bad form you have witnessed. Now that you are focusing on your cueing and participant connection, you can walk around the room and help people to perfect their form!
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ACE: Certified Personal Trainer
AFAA: Certified Group Fitness Instructor