PiYo Instructor Training

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PiYo! - FitBetty.com #piyo #fitness

Woop woop, I’m officially certified to teach PiYo! I have been doing the DVD set for a couple weeks now, but I knew I would like it before I even got it so I signed up for an instructor training in Colorado. I am going to start teaching PiYo classes at my rec center probably starting in September after I get my routines memorized.

PiYo! - FitBetty.com #piyo #fitness

The PiYo live class was a bit different than I expected: it is strongly choreographed (much different than traditional yoga) and follows 32-count music. This will be a new journey for me since I am not very good at counting music! I am back to teaching Zumba once a week, and I have been teaching group fitness for 4 years now, but it has mostly been classes that don’t rely on counting beats (Zumba doesn’t do this so much – I follow the music and the beat, but I don’t count them much). This should be interesting! Practice makes BETTER, so I’m going to practice ๐Ÿ˜‰

PiYo! - FitBetty.com #piyo #fitness

My PiYo Live instructor certification was down in Lakewood, Colorado, on Sunday. I love Colorado, so there’s no need to twist my arm to go there, haha! I went with a friend so that made it was a nice trip, complete with a stop at the Under Armour outlet shop in Loveland and I got some good deals. Can’t miss that store!

PiYo! - FitBetty.com #piyo #fitness
Photo taken by Maksim Seredov, used with permission

I got the PiYo wokout program a couple weeks ago and fell in love, so when I found out about the training in Colorado I jumped on board! PiYo is great for me because it is a mind-body workout with elements of Pilates and yoga but without any spirituality involved. I am interested in yoga for strictly fitness, good strength and stretch, but I want to skip the spirituality.    

PiYo! - FitBetty.com #piyo #fitness

 

If you’re not familiar with PiYo, here are some things to know: PiYo…

  • is not a yoga class or a Pilates class – it’s a fusion class with those elements combined with strength training and some cardio, even a few barre style moves mixed in
  • is usually done barefoot on a mat (kind of a barefoot bootcamp!), but you can wear shoes if you don’t have a mat or a mat that is grippy enough
  • is good for everyone. If you are a beginner, you can modify most if not all of the moves to suit you
  • Get ready to sweat! This is a {mostly} low impact workout, but that doesn’t mean low intensity!
  • the Live class and the DVD program are different…and similar…all at the same time. There are a variety of moves and combinations, so the routines in the live class and DVD set are different, the routine and class structure are different as well.

 Here’s the mat I have been using for PiYo, too: it’s from Manduka and it’s SUPER grippy!! It’s a natural rubber, so my hands would smell funny after using it for a while, but I think that the rubber smell is going away the longer I use the mat.

PiYo! - FitBetty.com #piyo

It’s folds without creasing and it’s grippy on both sides so you won’t slide around. There is no cushion to it, though, so if you need cushion you can add another mat underneath.

PiYo! - FitBetty.com #piyo

I won the mat in a contest, along with a block and strap. You could use a block in PiYo, but we move through poses pretty quickly so you usually wouldn’t need a block. In the flow sections when we hold poses a bit longer, the block is nice for support in low lunge for my hips.

19 thoughts on “PiYo Instructor Training”

  1. May I ask whyou you mention the spirituality aspect of yoga? Is it because you practice a different religion and did you attend classes where the spirituality aspect was done? I have gone to yoga classes but they never even mentioned the spirituality aspect of it until very recently. That time, I was surprised by it, though I knew that there was a spiritual aspect to it. I was pretty uncomfortable, as someone who practices a different religion, and wondered if this is common in yoga classes here.

    Reply
    • Hi, thanks for the question! I am a Christian, so I don’t want to practice any of the religious aspects of yoga as a personal choice. There are a lot of yoga classes that don’t incorporate any spirituality in the class, which is how I currently teach my yoga classes. But in some of the classes I have heard of in my own town, they incorporate chanting, do meditations, light incense, etc. to bring people into a more spiritual place. I’m not personally comfortable with that, so I don’t attend those types of classes, and I teach my own yoga classes without spirituality blended in.

      I think it depends on the teacher and where you take the classes whether they have a lot of spirituality in them. If you take yoga studio classes, you’re more likely to see more of that, if you take classes at a public rec center or YMCA, for example, you may be less likely to see that. But that’s never cut and dry, and it all depends on the teacher.

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  2. Thanks for the info! I’m just working on getting my AFAA certification and one of the first workouts I want to get certified in is PiYo Live. I have been taking classes at my local Y and love it and figured this way I can get an advance look at some of the workouts that I love to do and possibly at some point teach them myself (I’m still a little terrified at the thought of leading people in a workout but I’m hoping confidence will come with time). One thing I’ve heard is the PiYo Live music on the DVD is different than what you use in class – though the classes I’ve taken have always been the same music. Coincidence because it’s all been at the Y or do they just recommend the songs to coordinate with each section of the Live workout?

    Reply
    • PiYo provides music and choreography to go together, and they are pretty strict about having instructors stick to the music and format provided. For example, if you use Flow from round 40, you must use the music that goes with Flow from Round 40. Classes can have mixes of rounds in each class (round 30 full body fusion, round 42 flow, round 35 strength and stretch, etc.), but each choreography section must stick with the music that came with it. Each round has new choreography and music so you can change the class choreography regularly, but PiYo determines which music goes with the choreography. If most of the PiYo classes you have attended use the same music, chances are they are using the same round/release. Each instructor in the PiYo VIP program gets the same new rounds each release so many people are using the same choreography and music as they are released.

      The music on the DVD’s we get from PiYo is different then the music we are supposed to use in classes, but they are all 8-count songs so your counts will be the same. I usually memorized the choreography first, then practiced with the music for class and had no issues. The music sounds different and the BPMs change a bit depending on which section you are using, but the 8-count remains the same and it’s easy to get if put together once you have a feel for it. My very first experience teaching group fitness was teaching Zumba, so I wasn’t used to using 8-count music, but practicing with PiYo helped me learn to teach with 8-count music (although I’m still not perfect! but better than I was before)

      Your confidence will build over time with teaching group fitness, it just takes practice. I am an introvert so it was challenging for me to get up and lead a class, but practice makes better! Take the time to practice and see if you can find a mentor in your facility that can help walk you through teaching group fitness and that can let you teach a few sections in the classes to get your feet wet. When I started teaching group fitness I had a good friend that helped me start teaching and since then I have helped several other instructors get started as well. Most people are happy to help ๐Ÿ™‚ You can also teach a group of friends or family a mini class to get a feel for leading, and get some constructive feedback at the same time. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed to think about all the things to remember, but with PiYo you can start out with a shorter class (memorize maybe 4 or 5 sections to start) then filling out the rest of your class as you memorize more until you have all the sections memorized. Once you have the basic idea figured out, then replace a song or 2 here and there so you son’t have to memorize a entirely new round right away. PiYo live classes also follow a bit of a pattern, so once you figure out the pattern of moves and choreography, memorizing new choreography becomes easier ๐Ÿ™‚

      Reply
  3. I am contemplating a PiYo certification. I bought the DVD set and have been practicing the moves. I love it! I just wonder what the format of the class is? Obviously you start out with a warm up and in most fitness classes you follow a bell curve where you ease into the workout get intense in the middle and gradually bring it down at the end. On the DVD they have separate components to the work out. How do they come together to form the class?

    Reply
    • Hi Dee! The structure of the PiYo Live class is a bit of a bell curve, with the warm-up and cool-down (seated stretches) at the end. But the intensity is pretty consistent in the middle of the class. The sections are: Warm-Up, Heat Building, Lower Body, Full-Body Fusion, Power (cardio), Flow right, Flow Left, Core and More, Strength and Stretch, and finally Cool Down. A lot of the elements of the DVD set are combined into the live class, but it has a different structure and set-up. Initially it takes quite a bit of time to memorize the choreography to teach the PiYo classes, but once you get it down, it starts to become easier. If you sign up with PiYo VIP (optional), they will send you choreography and music every other month if you pay a monthly fee similar to the Zumba ZIN program.

      I have been teaching PiYo for about 1-1/2 years, and I am now working on getting yoga certified so I can transition my classes to a yoga format and have a bit more freedom to format my classes the way I want. If you teach a PiYo class you must use PiYo music, choreography, format, etc per licensing from Beach Body. You can make some minor modifications to fit your class, but it needs to be identifiably PiYo if that is the class name. PiYo was a great place for me to start into teaching yoga, and I’m now moving away from it to more yoga (I want to design my own power yoga classes). If you love doing it, then you’ll love teaching it! It is a fun class to teach ๐Ÿ™‚

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  4. Great article! I want to get my certification too, but felt like I would have to master the DVD’s before going to the class. Sounds like sooner may be better so I can practice at home before I teach.

    Reply
    • The Live program is a bit different than the DVDs. It is helpful to get familiar with the moves from the DVDs, but I would get certified sooner rather than later so you have time to practice. It took me a month of practice to memorize {almost} a full class with counts, cueing, etc. It’s a great format, though, and well worth the time!

      Reply
  5. I’m signed up to do this in Lakewood too in a couple weeks. I’m super nervous because I’m just getting familiar with the DVDs. Did you feel like you needed to know a lot about the program for the certification? I haven’t taught any classes before either. Any words of encouragement or advice?!

    Reply
    • Hi Sarah! You don’t have to know tons about the program before going, they will fill you in on the details. I had never taken a live PiYo class before doing this training, I had just done the DVDs. It does help to read the manual a bit before going to get an idea of the poses they use. I think a little yoga experience helps (but isn’t necessary) just to understand some basic alignment in the poses. I have done a little bit of yoga, mostly through DVD’s and online videos, but it helped me understand alignment cues and modifications. Group fitness teaching experience is helpful, but again not necessary – you will learn this through the class. The live class is a bit different than the DVDs and it’s still a lot of fun! Be prepared to move off and on throughout the day, so bring water, a sweater, and snacks. We got about a 1/2 hour for lunch, so we found a restaurant that was pretty close by, but you can always pack your lunch if you like. After your certification, give yourself plenty of time to get comfortable with the material before teaching it since there is a lot of choreography and cueing to learn. I teach Zumba, so I’m not used to talking a lot in class, so this will be something I have to get used to! I am memorizing my material part by part: memorizing my warm-up routine first, then the heat building, then the legs, etc. This makes it not quite so overwhelming, and I plan on practicing my cueing, too, since it’s so important and I don’t want to miss that when I’m teaching class. Good luck and have fun! If you need anything else, let me know ๐Ÿ™‚

      Reply
    • It’s a lot of fun! It is a good workout for me especially since I need to strengthen my hips and glutes because I’m battling runner’s knee. This is helping!

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    • I’m in a challenge group with my friends, and I’m practicing my routines for class, so I will be doing PiYo a lot! You should see if you can bring a PiYo certification to your area! ๐Ÿ™‚

      Reply

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