I think most classes are inherently “multi-level”; think about it, within a group of beginners, there is a range of experience, right? Of course this pattern goes up the chain to the self-described advanced exerciser.
My most common strategy is to have a focus for the class and communicate it to the participants at the outset, i.e., anaerobic training, heavy weight lifting, improving balance, etc. This way, they already have some idea of the demands that will be placed on them (with these I always offer safety cues and reminders to please “work at a level that’s appropriate for you”. I like to say that there’s a sweet spot between comfort and challenge that clients must find).
I always begin with a base move that everybody can do and that done mindfully and properly provides a good workout, as is. Of course, I’ll add progression and regression options throughout so people can literally exercise their autonomy and work at a level on which they feel confidently challenged.
I like to mingle in the group during the class; do the exercise beside them, maybe offer a helpful cue for improvement or words of encouragement or praise, when appropriate.
All classes have to be mulitlevel in order to survive. Everyone has a starting and pushing point.
Our bootcamp is ongoing so the great thing is the “regulars” can really see how far they’ve come when “new” bootcampers join.We are constantly reminding our bootcampers to “remember when” they started. As trainers and instructors we need to “be on it” at all times. We need to read people fast and be able to quickly make a modification or push a bit harder for that next level.
We can’t become robotic in our teaching we must always pay attention and be clear and precise when it comes to amping things up for some and slowing things down for others.
We want our participants to be successful at any level.
I have an additional point to all those already made: I remind people that an exercise class – whatever the format may be – is not a competition sport. It matters little what the person next to them is doing. It is sometimes even helpful to praise people for using the easier option to reinforce the message that this is just as praiseworthy as the person who has perfected the routine