Monday, March 7, 2011

I'm Certifiable!

In the last two weeks I've taken a Spinning Instructor Certification and a Water Fitness Instructor Certification!  Does that mean I'm certifiable?

I spent last Saturday at Brunswick Community College getting my United States Water Fitness Instructor Certification!  Last fall after I finished a swim workout at BCC the Water Fitness Instructor who had just finished her class told me about the certification.  There was a class last September that I really wanted to take but it was on the same day as the Wilmington YMCA Triathlon.  So when I saw the information for this month's class I signed up immediately!

There are certain populations  of people who can't, for medical or physical reasons, get a good aerobic workout on land.  It may be arthritis or other physical challenges that keep them sedentary.  And with our ever increasing life spans there needs to be an alternative workout for those who can't exercise any other way. Working out in the water, either in shallow (chest deep) or deep water with a flotation belt provides an extremely low impact way of exercising, and  it's really a lot of fun. The most important things that the USWFA stresses in their classes is that they need to be fun and safe. 

There are so many different classes you can teach or take, some of the more recently popular classes include Aqua Tai Chi, Water Pilates, Water Yoga and Aqua Zumba.  I'm thinking that I would really like to teach Aqua Zumba and Water Kickboxing!  In Dallas I did a lot of Aerobic Kickboxing and even had a bunch of Billy Blanks Tae Bo videos. Do any of you rememeber Tae Bo?  I think I could easily adapt a lot of the moves to be used in the water, and even did use some or my Water Test on Saturday in a punch series.

"Aquatic Personal Training" is the fastest growing segment of water fitness,  more and more people are hiring private Aquatic Personal Trainers for private, semi-private or small group sessions.  This also sounds like something I might enjoy.

We were sent a big three ring notebook with the USWFA Instructor Certification material.  It was the most studying that I've done since college.  I was really anxious and stressed about the testing.  We met at 9:00 am with our Instructor Trainer, Sandra Huth.  She was the same person who had approached me last fall about taking the class and becoming an instructor!  I'd also seen her last week when she came into the Bath & Body Works store where I work - the world is small.  We went over a little bit of the material and after a short break came back to the classroom for the written test.  A passing score of 80% is required to be certified. 

After a short break for lunch it was back to the classroom for a short time to discuss our Water Test.  Then we changed and met in the Therapy Pool.  We started with Sandy leading us in some of the teaching techniques that she uses including Aqua Pilates.  Then it was time for our testing.  We each were given a theme for our class, they all differed.  Mine was to teach a "Fun Class for Seniors".  We had already turned in our lesson plan for our choreographed workout with our pre-course materials.  We each led our brief 8 minute workout leading the others in the class as our students.  Everyone was quite nervous, I opted to go first.  As usual, I was way too worried about it.  I did just fine and found out afterwards that I scored a 99 on the water test and a 98 on the written test!

I hope to teach some classes at the community college and also try to develop classes this summer for some of the local pools in the different subdivisions.  How convenient would it be for residents to be able to ride their bikes or walk to the pool and get some great exercise while staying cool and not having to drive anywhere?

Sandy, the instructor invited me to come to any of her workouts and teach a little of her class for some experience.  She liked my enthusiasm and said we need people in her classes to keep the energy and liveliness up!   Really????  Me????  Lively????