The old saying “You only get one chance to make a first impression,” is completely true in group exercise. When you’re standing in front of a packed class, full of regulars and newbies alike, you only get one shot to make a first impression and set the tone for a kick booty class! What you say and how you say it will either excite your students and put them at ease, or make them question the sanity of their decision to attend your class.
You want to be friendly, informative, to the point, and reassuring in 2 minutes or less. So what exactly are you supposed to say to accomplish all of that quickly and without boring your regulars? Let’s break it down one letter at a time!
Create a great class I.N.T.R.O.
Here are five tips for creating a stand-out class intro that will have participants excited and ready for the workout experience.
I << Introduce yourself, greet the class, and make announcements.
This is your chance to hook your class. Show them your great personality and let them know they are going to receive a fun energetic workout. You are your best marketing tool, so let them know about any upcoming programs or events at the facility.
“Hello everyone, my name is Lauren, and I am so excited you chose to come workout with me today! Get ready to party! Don’t forget about our upcoming barre workshop next Saturday. ”
N << Name the class.
Make sure your participants know what class they are attending. This is especially important if you teach at a facility with multiple studios. You want to make sure everyone is there for the correct class.
“Welcome to PulsePointe barre.”
T << Tell them what to expect.
Participants, especially newcomers, like to know what they are about to do. If you want them to give you their all, don’t leave them guessing about what’s to come. You don’t have to break down every minute of the class, but provide them with a brief summary.
“PulsePointe barre is a 55 minute cardio barre class. We will begin with a warm-up, and then move on to arm work. Next, we will head to the barre, followed by core work and a flexibility segment on the mat.”
R << Reassure newcomers and first-time exercisers.
Coming to a new class can be scary sometimes. It is our job to make sure ALL of our students feel comfortable and confident about the class ahead.
“I want to send a special welcome out to all of my newcomers. We have 3 brand new songs today so everyone will be learning something new. I will give lots of options all throughout class today to help you customize your workout. Remember, the most important thing is to have fun and keep moving.”
O << Organize the group and equipment.
Safety is every instructors #1 priority. Make sure all participants have the space they need for a safe and effective workout. Check that everyone has the equipment they need and it is set up properly.
“You will need one light set of dumbbells, a Pilates ball, and a mat for this workout. Please place your Pilates ball and dumbbells at the barre. We will get out your mats towards the end of class. Alright, let’s party! ”
Remember, you want to keep your intro short, sweet, and energetic. To avoid giving a 10 minute monologue at the beginning of class, take a few minutes to write out an intro that works for your class. After a few classes, it will flow naturally. Cheers to starting each class with a bang!
P.S. from Summer
I love this article and topic so much that I just had to pop my head in and say I agree with Lauren 100%. It is imperative for the success of your class that you tell them who you are, what they’re there for, and what to expect. It will ease all the uncertainties that often come with walking into a new class.
My general class intro is:
“Hey guys, I’m Summer for those of you who I haven’t had the opportunity to hang out with before. With me and all my classes, feel free to change things up today based on how you are feeling and what’s going on in your body. You know your body much better than I do, so make sure you are drinking water and taking breaks as you need. I don’t always tell you when to do those things, so stay in touch with your body throughout. Today’s cycle class is 3 great mountain climbs with 2 short acceleration bursts down the hill. Sound fun?!”
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MS: Recreation and Leisure Studies
BS: Sport Management
AFAA: Certified Group Fitness Instructor
ACE: Certified Personal Trainer
Balanced Body Pilates Apparatus & Reformer Level 1, 2 & 3
YogaFit Level 1 & 3