I’m feeling a little nostalgic today since it’s the 24 year anniversary of the first full class that I taught. So I’m wondering, how did you decide to join the fitness industry, whether you do it for a hobby or as a career?
For me, I had been in gymnastics and drill team for years, including choreographing and teaching routines. When I got out of college, I bought a fancy membership at a women’s only gym and took a few classes. They weren’t fun. I found myself thinking of different things I would do if it were my class. Then I stopped going to classes, and no one had taught me how to use the weight machines. So, in order to keep healthy and to keep interested, I attended a several-week training that was being provided by a regional chain that was offering it to build up their instructor base. After our team teaching, I got a job at a club closer to home. That was in the day of leotards and tights, hi/lo, aerobic steps made out of wooden boxes, and cassette tapes that weren’t 32-beat mixed.
Here’s to another 24 years! What a ride it has been, and still is.
I started teaching 25 years ago–yikes! In college, I used to exercise (and I feel so old saying this) with Gilad’s Bodies in Motion show in my living room and really loved it. When I found out a local, privately owned fitness place was looking for instructors, I wanted to see if I could really do it as a part time job. I interviewed–and he required both a written and practical exam– and I did well on both and started teaching classes for IBM employees for many years.
Like you, I also started in the days of hi/lo, which I taught 6 days a week. Step was brand new, and we also had the wooden steps. I had a pre-choreographed program for 6 weeks straight, with the same music for that time (yuck!).
I continued teaching throughout grad school and then started a full time career in higher education administration. Eventually I had children and became a stay-at-home mom, which is when I added my personal training cert on top of teaching. Now, I have the best of both worlds by training/teaching and being with my family.
Love, love, love teaching, training, and coaching–and leading others to a healthy lifestyle.