As a new coach, leading a fitness club can be a daunting task. First there are the things you need to know, then there are people who have all their needs, questions, and personality, and then you have the facilities and equipment to look after. Among the requirements for him to be able to teach his management, answer questions, change injuries, and keep everyone in good shape and fun, sometimes the very foundation of teaching is lost.
Seeing new coaches, which I feel is missing is a goal. Recently after learning from a new teacher, I asked her what her goal was to teach a particular group. The answer was, those were programs, so that’s what he was teaching. This is what I think – you are not a teacher if you just show up and follow the list on paper. You are not a teacher if you just follow my directions, click the start button, or write my weight in the manila folder.
It doesn’t have to be right where you are teaching and you can’t answer the question why. Are you teaching because it is what you should teach or because there is a lesson within the practice? As a CrossFit trainer, are you just chasing people through holes and climbing, sometimes having fun? As a cycling instructor, are you simply introducing students to cardio opportunities? Is it the day to lift heavy weights in powerlifting? Or, is there something deeper – a lesson that students should come up with?
What Is the Purpose?
I think of purpose in teaching as I write stories. If I had written an article I would have had a descriptive word – something to tie my words together and be the main theme in every paragraph. Each paragraph can have a theme statement related to the doctrine and identify its purpose.
The goal is what I want to teach today – what I want you to get out of the classroom, here is the gym, once you learn. Paragraphs and classes of class – heat, walking, exercise, post-exercise. Each section of the class has a purpose related to the main purpose of the class. Statements and events that form the basis for all of this to happen.
Do it yourself:
- The goal is any movement
- The goal is for each component of the class
- The goal of the whole class
But I did not write fitness
Not writing software is not the reason for the lack of purpose. You may not have the same goal as the person who wrote the program, but you can still have a goal. It’s like the interpretation of a song. The notes are on the page and each teacher will have a different idea or emphasis, depending on what they see in the text. The pieces are the same; delivery is slightly different.
Is it easy to set a goal when you write the program? My answer is no. My answer is – it is easier to set a goal when the program is successful. At CrossFit LA coaches took turns writing three-week plans. Most of the time, I was teaching courses I had not written. The programs were so well thought out that it was not a problem to find a purpose in each other’s exercise.
What Does It Really Look Like?
So, what does this mean in practical terms? If I were given a class program, I would set these goals for myself before I went to class. For example, if I were given a gym class to teach handwriting ideas that I could think of, what might I do with a handkerchief? I can choose what I want to say with an empty space. I can put a printer on my shoulder so that I can have people to do well on the shoulders, mid-arms, and hip areas to understand and do what it means to be “empty.” I can say at the beginning of the class, “Today our focus will be on the absurd and where this is reflected in us in the various activities.” Because as a student, if you know what you have to learn, you would have the opportunity to learn, right? Think of this as a bold statement.
Another example would be a day of cycling sometimes. If I were given a program that announced that gymnastics would be four cycles of 1,000m, I would think that this day would be a day for me to learn to wrap my hips so that students can make proper hip flexion while riding. I can make a good program in the morning and heat up or do some exercise as a workout. We can practice the best form by sitting down. Or if I have a high school student, I can imagine that the day is ready for the race and we can talk about the start of the race, the running, the time to start running home, and so on.
What I can’t do in all of these situations is just use the technique, explain the exercises, and then say go.. The teacher is not punctual and happy. A competent student in any athletic competition will soon be able to exercise. They do not want anyone to start and stop. They need someone to take their education to a deeper level. They need someone to guide them who understand the process, the purpose of the exercise, and the purpose of the exercise. A teacher is someone who gives them this and at any time can answer why.