Hey guys! I’m taking a day off from my Monday inspo boards (hope you don’t mind!) because I have more exciting things to talk about…specifically: I made it through Les Mill BodyFlow training!!
And I even passed—3/3, woohoo!
Check out this shot of our awesome group:
Notice anything weird?
…Yeah. We’re all wearing wings. Glittery ones. Haha.
The release we were trained on had a bird theme to it—lots of songs with references to birds in the lyrics and lots of bird-related poses (like the ones you see us doing in the pic). So our instructor (who was AMAZING) actually went out and bought us all wings to take home. (And yes, she said “you’ve earned your wings!”)
There were also a few other trinkets, like this Kia Kaha – Stay Strong bracelet:
(Kia Kaha is from the New Zealand-based tribe that the entire Les Mills culture is founded in—when you join Les Mills, you hear tons of references to the language and the philosophies of the “tribe.”)
We were also given those pink ribbons on the first day of class. Our instructor called them Brazilian Wish Bracelets. The idea was that we tied three knots in them and repeated a wish for each knot, and when the bracelets wore out and fell off, it meant the wishes had come true.
Well, I cut mine off after two days, so I’m not sure what that means… (actually, she said we should, and my wish was related to the training, so its coming-true time was up anyway.)
So as you can see, we were totally steeped in Les Mills culture throughout the weekend. There’s even a special handshake that involves pressing your forehead and nose to the other person’s forehead and nose (pretty awkward, as you can imagine). I could see this element of the program scaring some people off—similar to the way some people see yoga as a bunch of weird voodoo—but I think it adds color and personality to the experience.
As for the training itself: if you’ve ever heard anything about a Les Mills training, you know that they’re known for being INTENSE. BodyFlow is no different. I was more exhausted after Day 1 of this training than I was after labor and delivery—ha!
We were in class from 11 AM to 8 PM Saturday and 8-4 Sunday. And we were physically moving for a majority of that time. Let’s just say my body isn’t too happy with me today (whatever happened to listening to your body, right??).
Here’s a little rundown of the schedule:
1. Welcome/intros. This is where we dove into the Les Mills culture stuff I mentioned above, talked about the history of BodyFlow and what it meant to be an instructor, etc.
2. Master class (a run through of the specific release we’re learning, taught by the instructor).
3. An hour or so of lecture, talking about how to learn and deliver choreography.
4. Time to practice our assigned tracks, one of which we’d be presenting to the class later that day.
5. The Technique Clinic, where we broke down all of the movements one by one. This was SUPER helpful (turns out I’ve been slacking on my Warrior II form for a loooong time) but also SO exhausting, since we were on our feet working the poses the entire time, and the whole process took about two hours!
6. Day 1 presentations. We were all super nervous, but everyone rocked it. My notes from the instructor were pretty minimal, and she even said “I wish I could think of more to say!”—but I picked up on LOTS of other ways I needed to improve throughout the course of the training.
Oh, and presentations didn’t just mean we got to present and be done—we had to participate in the entire workout, too, while everyone else presented.
By the end of the day, I was cross-eyed tired. I had absolutely nothing left to give, and I was horrified by the fact that I had homework for the next day, in addition to eating/showering/taking care of Josh/face-planting into bed by a decent hour—all of which started when I got home at 9 PM.
Oh, and I had to be up by 6 AM the next day…
1. Day 2 presentations – round 1. We dove right into presenting this day, which was hard for me because my track for the day was super high energy, and I just didn’t have it yet. My presentation still went ok, but it was nowhere near what I’d hoped it would be. We were also videotaped this time (yiiikes), and then we watched the videos and shared feedback together as a class.
2. A very short lecture about how to create “fitness magic” in class, followed by the most awkward moment of the entire weekend…the instructor had us all stand up and close our eyes, and then she played the first minute or so of each song in the class and had us “let our bodies do whatever felt right.” So, imagine a group of people dancing (or doing who knows what) around a room with their eyes closed…I didn’t peek, but I heard a lot of nylon swishing sounds, haha.
3. The BodyFlow Challenge. We had no idea what this was going to be and were all super nervous about it—especially given how tapped our bodies already were from the morning and previous day, combined with the fact that we still had another presentation to do after the challenge.
It ended up being almost an hour and a half long workout, where we held each pose for several minutes each while the instructor fine-tuned our form.
Seriously—deadly. I had to tap out altogether during the ab work—my core was just destroyed, and my lower back was starting to ache like crazy. (And guess which track I was going to be presenting later? Abs!)
4. Day 2 presentations – round 2. We repeated the presentations from the morning, this time without stopping the music between tracks, so we could practice team teaching and transitioning. We had two people on stage at a time, with the person about to teach hovering right behind the current teacher, ready for a quick swap.
I did better with my track this time, surprisingly, and I had fun yelling things like “this is the LAST TIME we have to do this move ALL WEEKEND, guys!”
There were lots of other little exercises sprinkled throughout the weekend, too, like getting into pairs and practicing coaching each other into Warrior II, and writing/delivering our class intros. (“Hi, I’m Kim and this is BodyFlow. During the next 60 minutes…”)
I was lucky that the instructor was incredibly understanding about my need to pump every few hours. I was able to squeeze in two sessions on Saturday and one on Sunday, all while hiding out in this dark studio…
(Also lucky: two of the class participants were already instructors at that particular gym, and had keys to dark studios.)
I was so grateful that Brent’s mom was able to visit for the weekend to help him with the kids, so I didn’t have to worry too much about how things were going at home. Thank goodness for grandmas! (And dads!)
I can’t even express to you how excited I was to get home to my boys Sunday afternoon. I felt like I’d run three marathons in a row, but I’m glad I did it!
Now comes to even harder part: finishing my certification (we have to send in a video of us teaching a complete live class at a gym) and, you know, actually starting to teach this stuff. Just as soon as I can move my legs again…
Is there anything else you’d like to know about BodyFlow training?
I know some people find these posts because they’re considering certification—feel free to leave any questions in the comments, or shoot me a message via my Contact page!
Fellow Les Mills instructors, does this sound pretty similar to your training experience?
I’m curious to hear what other program’s challenges are like! I know they’re all brutal!
Tips for team teaching/certification recording??
I’m coordinating with an instructor at the gym, and she said I’m welcome to start team teaching with her whenever I’m ready. YIKES.
Hope you all had a wonderful weekend!