Learning about profile design, coaching and Energy Zones is very important to every Spinning® instructor. What about issues that rarely get attention, such as how to organize and store music, profiles and ideas for your rides? Each of us has our own style and if you are a new instructor, maybe you are looking for a method that works for you.
I started as an instructor in 2007. When I went through training, I don’t remember getting any information on profile organization but our manuals did give some suggestions of music genres to use in class. I was completely overwhelmed because I didn’t know anything about any other kind of music and went straight for the Top 40 and Pop music that I knew was played in other classes. Can anyone relate?
I immediately went home and downloaded every song I could think of from iTunes and other music ripping sites that are now defunct. Dollars racked up quickly but I didn’t know any other way to grow my library. I’ll never forget the night before my first solo class. I sat upstairs in a guest room with my index cards and music lists, writing moves to every chorus and verse of every song! I had 10 note cards for ONE class! Many hours of listening to songs and doing time checks against the movements I chose. It was more than tedious and I felt very unsure of how everything would turn out. After this was done, I would burn a CD for “Spin #1”. Each successive CD was given a number and was stuck in a big folder in my filing cabinet along with multiple note cards for that ride. It is pretty obvious now that this method was horrendous! Too time consuming, tedious, and left no option for variation of the profile in future rides. My rides were not based on Energy Zones and the profiles were all over the map. I pity those who took my first few classes!! It was that bad!
As years passed, technology changed and I went from burning CD’s to transferring playlists to a ZUNE. Note cards turned into printed sheets of paper with color codes. Each ride required a new playlist since these playlists were still unable to be altered. After one year, I had over 50 rides and cd/zune mixes.
Fast forward to present day. All of us have our own way to organize and store media and profiles. Talking with a few of my Spinning friends, I learned they each have their own method. I find this quite exciting, as there always has to be a better way and I love to share ideas with each other. We can only get better that way! Some people number their rides, some use creative names. One friend in particular groups songs in iTunes folders by Energy Zone. With even better technology today, there are ample sites to find music, not to mention ways to store and share it, like Soundcloud or Dropbox.
My goal is to keep learning and reworking the ways I use my music and profiles together. How can we make the process simpler without reusing the exact playlist each time? Keep talking to fellow instructors and those you may meet in conferences, because even the tiniest tidbits can be picked up and turned into gems!