You enter the room. All eyes are on you. Everyone knows your name. Everyone is watching you. Everyone is waiting for you to start. Welcome to being a barre teacher – or any group class instructor, for that matter.
Today, I will be sharing my journey on how I gain confidence in leading a Barre Class!
For some people, this amount of attention may be a dream come true, but for the longest time, this kind of attention made me nervous! Public speaking isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. When everyone is looking to you to see where the class goes there’s a huge responsibility to lead them well, and I constantly worried about what I looked like, what I sounded like, and whether I was teaching well enough, and in short- whether I was good enough! I always worried about living up to people’s expectations. It’s no easy thing to memorize an hour-long routine set to fast-paced music, especially if you are new to dance, or choreography.
However, when I widened my scope of awareness, I realized teaching barre wasn’t really about me. Taking the focus off myself, I realized it was about my students – the people in front of me. It was about using our time together to give a wonderful movement experience. It didn’t matter if the choreography was perfect. It didn’t matter if I missed a beat, as long as I was reaching out and making a positive impact on the people in front of me. Knowing that I have the ability to shape people’s lives for the better made it easier to teach. The realization that I had the power to impact someone’s life for the better, whether through correcting their posture, improving their stamina, or cracking a joke to make them smile through that last set of super slow push-ups was so compelling.
In teaching, I found out:
In 20 minutes you put smiles on people’s faces
In 2 weeks you see them hit new personal bests
In 12 months you see them with better posture, coordination, and body awareness – letting you know that they’re stronger and able to walk longer without fatigue.
Seeing people transform in barre classes is incredible.
Knowing that I make a positive impact on someone’s health and life is enormously rewarding. In teaching – whether it’s through positive motivation, teaching how to pace yourself, encouraging others to listen to their body today or to cheer them on to new personal bests – you have an immediate impact. Simply having an entire room of adults listen to, and want to follow you is enormously empowering. This non-stop hour-long class has gifted me so much more confident interacting with strangers, speaking out loud in front of crowds, and generally made me feel less awkward every time I have to say anything within a group.
If you’re looking to conquer a fear of public speaking, or vanquish a smidge of social anxiety, come try this Barre Teacher Training. It will help spark confidence from leading a group of people and I promise you’ll find it more rewarding than you expected. I was lucky enough to meet some amazing people who are my students. Their smiles, reassurance, and infectious energy just really encouraged me to keep going and teaching and boost my confidence to no end.
In conclusion, the main takeaways are:
- Barre is hard but rewarding.
- Great students & connecting to people make it worth it.
- This will demolish any fear you have of public speaking, interacting with strangers, or moving in public – you’re great at what you do, and you will help encourage others.
Join Joanna in the upcoming Ballet Barre Instructor Training Program where you will learn teaching cues to help you to lead a Barre class with confidence! Click here to learn more.