For Instructors

Leave out the "Good Job" statements

At WSSC, I attended a lecture with Spinning Instructor and Sport Psychologist, Dr. Haley Perlus and she had some advice for instructors. Listed are the highlights of her lecture for how to avoid saying phrases like "Good Job." In her view, phrases like that are useless and have no meaning in a coaching situation because they get repeated way too often. 1. Give constructive feedback in three to five words ie: "Push your toes forward; Release your shoulder downward; Slow your exhalation." Restrict the story telling, especially if it is about your life. 2. Never ask someone to do something you wouldn't do yourself. If you coach mostly on the floor while teaching, then let the members see you take classes. 3. Discover similarities with your students based on physical activity and health, as opposed to being parents or the discussion of other non-activity based hobbies to bring about trust and affinity. 4. Focus on positive attributes your students have. She called this the "purple cow." It is what makes anyone stand out from the crowd. What makes you stand out from the crowd? 5. Listen; ask questions; paraphrase 6. Give every class a performance goal that can be achieved during the class. It could be one section of the ride. For example, review the form for jumps and then ask everyone to count how many perfect jumps they can do in one minute. Then after some recovery have them do it again and try to beat their original number, but the jumps must be perfect form. I enjoyed Dr. Perlus' lecture and I know I will be implementing her advice as I take on two new classes for the summer months. Written by master instructor Sabrina Fairchild for on 06/09/2011



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