I am new to small group class training, and am looking for tips on how to perform the warm up portion before the resistance circuits. Also, how do you typically design your classes /choose what parts of the body to work? Do you use more total body exercises to allow for shorter workouts in order to attract more clients that feel as if they’re getting a full body workout in a short period of time?
If the class is outdoors I usually have my groups do a 5-10 minute run at the beginning of the class. If it’s indoors I give them a few bodyweight exercises to do for about 5-10 minutes at their own pace and then they start their training. Keep in mind that it all depends on the fitness level of the participants and the type of workout you will be having them do. As far as how to design a class, it’s totally up to you. You need to take in consideration the fitness level of the participants, the number of participants in your class, the type of equipment you have available and the ultimate goal or format of the class (is it circuit training, running, kettlebell or any other specialty class, etc.). You can do only bodyweight exercises or mix it up different pieces of equipment. The length of the class is up to you, as is the type of class you are offering. It can be anywhere from 30 minutes up to 90 minutes depending on what the class is all about.
I’m sure you will get different answers to this question here and you will have to decide what the next step will be in your class design.
I hope this helps.
In one of our Free Motion Circuit Classes. They will walk the track for 10 minutes then we begin our circuit training. In our other circuit class I will have them do large arm circles, lunge from side to side, toe touches..you can add whatever you like it’s up to you. Each circuit should last from 1min and half maybe 2 min. tops. It does depend on what type of class you are conducting. You can use anything from free weights to bodybar, buso ball etc.. hope some of these ideas helped.
The warm up phase of a class is dependent upon your participants fitness levels and abilities.
Generally it’s advisable to move in a dynamic, generous manner in order to increase blood flow and oxygen levels.
Stretching is not a way to warm up, in fact there are many articles about the whys of stretching in IDEAs library of articles.
Stretching is becoming a minor part of fitness
For a warm-up, it depends on what I’m going to have the class doing. If its a higher intensity class with lots of cardio bursts, then I use a longer lap run. If its more strength, then we do shorter range of motion strength moves using no weights that mimic the exercises we’ll be performing later. For example, mini squats with over head arm extension, arm circles, leg extensions, mini squats with chest press, etc.
As for strength exercises, it depends on the class. I change the exercises each class. Some days we focus more on lower body, some times upper body, sometimes core, some days we do all functional fitness bodyweight exercises. It just depends. I try to change it up while keeping everyone engaged. A little bit of something for everyone. I usually will give a hint as to what the next class will be like to maintain interest in the next class too.
We typically begin with a jog outside or in place, jumping jacks, jump rope, side shuffles, shadow boxing, and various other dynamic movements. I don’t encourage static stretching until the end of the class.
My class design is similar to the way I design PT sessions. Begin with warm up, work major muscles first and progress to smaller muscle groups. I alternate upper and lower body, and push pull exercises. Usually finishing with some core/ab work and stretches. I also like to do this in circuit fashion so that we keep moving and the heart rate stays relatively elevated.