If you’ve been in the fitness world for long, odds are you’ve grown to love it. You look forward to working out each day and don’t have a problem eating right. However, not many people feel that way.
For most people, working out is something they feel obligated to do. Most likely, they’ve gained a few extra pounds over the years and can feel their health going downhill.
But that’s why people like you exist. People who struggle with fitness come to people like you to lead them back to health.
However, being a group fitness instructor is about more than enjoying workouts and knowing how to eat healthily. It’s about possessing or learning the skills necessary to lead and inspire others.
We want to help make you better. Keep reading for everything you need to know about how to become the best group fitness instructor possible.
1. Make Safety a Top Priority
As a group fitness instructor, it’s your responsibility to keep an eye on class members to make sure people are staying safe. Obviously, this includes things like avoiding accidental collisions during running drills, people hitting each other with workout equipment, etc.
However, keeping your clients safe also means making sure they’re exercising using proper form. Workout injuries aren’t uncommon. However, many of them are avoidable.
Paying special attention to group fitness safety is especially important when using free weights and other types of resistance exercises. Doing weighted squats with bad form, for example, can lead to back pain, neck pain, and knee pain. People won’t want to come back to your class if they keep getting hurt.
2. Keep Things Interesting
Next, remember to change things up every once in a while. There’s nothing wrong with consistency, but you don’t want your class members to get bored. If you fall back on the same workout routine, people will eventually lose interest in the class and memberships will wain.
We recommend looking into other group workout options if you’re struggling to come up with new ideas. If you have members who do three classes a week, for example, make each day something different, such as:
- Day one – cycling and bodyweight cardio
- Day two- weight training
- Day three – kickboxing
Design your workout program however you see fit. Just make sure you’re changing things up and keeping it interesting for your class members.
To make your members feel special, come up with unique fitness group names for each class. It can be based on the type of training that you do, the people in the class, the day of the week they train on, etc. Let the class be part of your decision-making process to instill comradery and unity.
3. Spend One-On-One Time With Each Class Member
Group fitness classes have a lot of benefits. When training with other people, there’s more energy in the room. It helps people push themselves and gives them a social aspect to look forward to during their workouts.
However, you also want people to feel important and recognized. As the group fitness instructor, it’s important that you walk around the room and spend a little time focusing on individuals during the workout. Correct form, dole out compliments, and motivate people with some one-on-one time.
While some people choose group fitness classes because they want less personal attention, everyone needs to know that their efforts are recognized.
4. Lead by Example
One of the most important aspects of being a group fitness instructor is understanding that people will be looking up to you. As such, you need to lead by example. Your attitude and energy will have a direct effect on your class.
For example, if you’ve had a bad day and don’t want to be there, your class members will feel it. They’ll find it harder to work out and will be less energized.
When you’re leading a class, you need to be 100% invested. Remember, these people are coming to you to lead them on their fitness journey because they can’t do it on their own. You need to reward their trust by being a rock for them, even if you have to fake it on some days.
5. Expand Your Education
There are two types of fitness experts out there. There are the self-proclaimed experts who have had success on their own fitness journey. Then, there are those who have put time and research into all aspects of health and fitness.
The second option is who you need to become to be the best group fitness instructor possible. Start by getting your group fitness certification. From there, expand your education through formal and informal learning.
You’re going to have members who struggle to lose weight, even when they seem to be doing everything right. It could come down to an underlying issue, like hyperthyroidism, or a slow metabolism caused by years of fad dieting. There will also be people who have physical, mental, and emotional hangups you’ll need to help them overcome.
6. Know Your Audience
One of the most important qualities that define a good group fitness instructor is knowing how to read people. You may have a specific style of coaching you like to fall back on. However, not everyone responds to the same type of strategy.
For example, some people like to be pushed hard. They’ll thrive on tough love.
On the other hand, some people need a gentler approach. Tough love will only make them quit or give up on themselves.
Know your audience. You can have a general tone towards the class as a whole, but learn how to communicate with people on an individual level.
7. Be Accessible After Class to Your Members
Finally, if you want to be the best group fitness instructor possible, you need to be there for people. Before your class starts, it’s unlikely that you’ll have time to talk to people as you’re trying to prepare. However, you should make an effort to make yourself available to class members after the session.
Give people a chance to tell you that they enjoyed the class. Let them ask questions about nutrition, exercise, motivation, etc.
Build a stronger connection with the members of your class. This will increase your credibility and work to ensure high membership numbers.
Want to Become a Better Group Fitness Instructor?
If you love fitness and think you have a lot to offer people, we want to help you make your group fitness instructor dream a reality. Consider franchising with our company to get started on the right track.
We want to help you start making a name for yourself in the fitness community. When people in your community look for “group fitness classes near me,” they’ll see your name.
And if you’re looking for more tips and advice about health and fitness, feel free to check out some of our other articles before you go.