I was joking with another instructor yesterday that we need to clone ourselves in order to cover all the water fitness classes we are requested to teach. The truth is good water instructors are not easy to find and most of us work the "prime" hours -mornings that facilities are looking for. Many people ask how to become an instructor and I made a cartoon about it, but the truth is that it takes more than just music and jumping jacks to teach water fitness.
Here are the skill you need the most:
Have More Positive Attitude than you planned on having - Some of your clients will not be happy or joyful....and it takes just a few to bring your class down. You need to have enough positive energy for your self and them.
Have quick cute answers for occasional complaint.
Have an agenda- Most people tell me they like my class because I seem to have a workout planned for them. Take a moment to plan your classes and give the class a direction with a dash of variety thrown in.
Have the ability to educate and inform - My clients/patients/participants/members (I work at 6 pools!) love to know what muscles or part of the body we are working. It gives them something to focus on and I noticed they love feeling muscle action (well.... who doesn't). You don't have to get too technical - arms, legs, shoulders will do fine to start. If you have a more advanced group - then add muscle names.
The other question I get is how much does it cost, time commitment etc to become an instructor. This can vary greatly depending upon your educational background and work history. But in general you will need:
CPR/AED for the Professional- All exercise instructors are required to have a valid CPR/AED card. Check online for prices - they are usually around $100 or more.
Aqua Fitness Certifications - For all certification you will need a manual ($60+), study guides (optional $75+), and then pay a certification fee ($199+)
AEA (Aquatic Fitness Association) is $300 total which includes certification fee, the manual and 1 year membership - great deal!
How much time? If you do not have a background in fitness,exercise science or medicine you will need more time to study the sciences needed to pass the exam. Plan on 6-8 months at the very least.
I will update this page as I get more questions.......