Saturday, November 2, 2013

The Birth of a Fitness Instructor

When I first became a Zumba instructor, a little over 3 years ago, I was shocked at how unfriendly other instructors were at jam sessions, conventions, training classes and other events.  Women are definitely cliquey and catty by nature but Zumba seemed to bring out the worst in a lot of people.  Most of the large studios in my area had so much drama among the instructors and their "pet" members that it was often uncomfortable to work out there.  I used to take another instructor's class at least once a week but I stopped going because there was so much negative energy. 

A year after getting my Zumba license I became AFAA group exercise certified and then AEA aquatic fitness certified the following  year.  To maintain these certifications I attend a lot of non-Zumba events. The people at the non-Zumba events were so much friendlier and more open than I was expecting.  There are always a couple of divas in the room but nothing on the level of Zumba drama.  What is it that makes some Zumba people so catty?  Why do I find myself sitting in a corner by myself when I go to a Zumba event outside of my city but make 10 new friends every time its any other certification?

I have to admit part of it is definitely me.  As my confidence as an instructor has grown (which I definitely have to credit to Zumba) so has my willingness to network and reach out to people.  Maybe sometimes I was sitting in the corner by myself because I didn't appear friendly.  Why should someone reach out to me if I'm not going to reach out to anyone else?  

This Friday I am going to a master class with a local Zumba Jammer.  I have all but sworn off these events because of how un-fun they generally are.  But this Friday I'm going to walk in with a smile on my face and my expectations high.  I'm going to talk to people and dance my ass off.  I'm going to do my best to ignore the negative energy and focus on the positive.  I have to believe that people who teach such an awesome class that has totally changed my life aren't all bad.  

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