Xtend Barre Instructor Training
My fitness instructor training courses are complete!!!
Last weekend I capped off my intense 4-week fitness instructor training schedule with my favorite training course, Xtend Barre.
Xtend Instructor Training
The Xtend Barre Training is one of the most well structured programs on the market. The 18 hour training course is comprehensive, providing trainers with information not only on the exercises themselves, but “how to effectively teach them.” In addition, trainers are given information on how to modify exercises for beginners and special populations and how to progress exercises for the advanced clients. (www.xtendbarreworkout.com)
The Xtend Barre training was truly the best training program I’ve been through. All of the trainings I’ve done (Piloxing, Pilates, Yoga & Xtend Barre) taught us how to do the exercises properly and how to modify or advance the exercises. Pilates and Xtend Barre taught us how to be better teachers and improve our instructing skills. But Xtend Barre took it a step further taught us how to make a class flow and how to teach with music. Skills that seasoned instructors have learned over time but the Xtend Barre training includes music studying and review.
To see a sample Xtend Barre workout, check out the demo video of Xtend Barre.
Here’s what we did over the 3 days and 18 hours of training:
Xtend Barre Class
Each day we started the training with a full Xtend Barre class. Photos courtesy of Courtney Miller, our fabulous instructor trainer.
Exercise Breakdown & Teaching Practice
After the morning class we broke down sections of the workout and focussed on about 6-8 exercises at a time. We practiced and perfected our own form, learned modifications and challenging variations, and then took turns teaching the exercises to each other.
The first time teaching was so nerve-racking! It’s funny because I’ve been teaching classes for a while and have confidence in what I teach, but teaching something new in front of strangers made me fumble my words. Thankfully, everyone was super nice and didn’t judge each other’s performances.
Principles of Xtend Barre
In addition to deep diving into each exercise, we reviewed the history of Xtend Barre, the foundations and principles, how to teach to different populations, class formatting and planning, and musicality.
The largest learning curve for me and many instructors is learning how to teach with and to the music. Not only is music a great motivator, keeps the pace and provides a tempo, it helps the instructor count the reps without counting. The music we use in class has a consistent 4-4 beat so if you start an exercise on the right beat you can hear and feel when you reach 4, 8, 12, or 16 reps. Pretty cool, right? Tough part is starting on the right beat and smoothly transitioning to another exercise and finding the beat again.
We did a lot of music studying by listening for the phrases, strong beats, clapping with the tempo, and talking to the beat of the music. This was the most helpful part of the training course. By the end of the weekend, almost everyone was able to find the beat and transition on the beat.
The final project of the training course was to teach a section of the workout for 5-7 minutes. Thankfully we were each given our section assignments at the end of day 2 so we were able to create a lesson plan ahead of time. Me and another student were given the warm-up section to teach and we had to teach different exercises. Since I already do a 2nd position plie warm-up in Piloxing, I decided to push my comfort zone and do a warm-up with the ball. Overall it went okay and had some great critiques from Courtney to help me improve.
In order to be certified to teach Xtend Barre, I have to video tape myself teaching a full Xtend Barre class and send it in for approval. They say it generally takes instructors about 60 days of practicing before submitting the DVD. My friend, Carey who is a yoga instructor at the Xtend Barre studio, also took the XB training course and I’m very happy to have someone to practice with.
The Xtend Barre instructor training was incredible and I loved every minute of it. It definitely wasn’t an easy course though! At the end of each day I was physically and mentally exhausted that fell asleep at 9:30 each night. Even though I was physically exhausted, I wasn’t terribly sore and I think that was because I’ve been taking XB classes for about 5 months and my muscles were used to it. But, during the morning class on the 3rd day, my muscles were so tired that I struggled to stay low in my plies and had crazy shaky legs in the chair/ski slope section.
Overall, I would highly recommend the Xtend Barre instructor training. It’s a pricey course, but well worth your money. I can’t wait to teach this awesome workout!