Tuesday, September 13, 2011

How To Teach a Group Fitness Class - Counting Music

Team - I love teaching group classes and I love explaining how I teach a class!  To build off of "How to teach a group fitness, part 1," here is "How to teach a Group Fitness, part 2."

Today's post will focus on the music instructor's use in class, the upbeat, downbeat and the 32 count phrase.  There are several ways to count the beat and/or the 32 count in group fitness music.  Find out what method works for you and stick to it!  All in all, the combination has to total 32 counts.  Whether it's 4's, 8's, 2's or 16's; the total has to be 32 counts.

Here are a few tips, tricks and a video example of instructing a group fitness class:

1. Find Your Music:  Prepare! Some mixes make it hard to hear the beat and phrase. If this is the case, avoid this music for your class.  Find a CD that you like and stick with it for 2-4 weeks.  Once you feel comfortable with this music, add another CD to the mix.

2. Count on the Upbeat:  There is an upbeat and a downbeat.  We instruct on the upbeat.  The downbeat is off beat. The downbeat will feel very unnatural as if you're swimming against the current.  Some patrons will naturally understand the beat and some will not know a beat if it hit them in the face.  That is why we're, instructors, there to lead the class.

3.  The 32 Count: Musical phrasing consists of a 32 count.  Phrasing is made up of a group of 8 counts.  Four 8 counts make up a 32 count phrase.  This is why it is very natural for me to count 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8.  Four sets give me a 32 count combination.  My video below details my method.

Listen to my method of finding the upbeat and a 32 count phrase. 

Now grab your music and try it at home.  Let me know if you have any questions.

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