Group inductions are a time-efficient way of inducting a group of newcomers into a gym facility and introducing them to the gym equipment.
Group inductions can be an extremely challenging for the Personal Trainer / Gym Instructor to complete and manage. The main disadvantage being that there is less personal client attention than working with clients on a 1-1 basis.
When inducting exercises to groups, it is imperative that the instructor manages the whole group effectively and maintains attention throughout by moving them into good viewing positions. This is so they can all view the demonstration and listen to the key teaching points.
Depending on time available and group size it may not be possible for every member to practise every exercise or machine demonstrated, but the inductor should make sure at least every member has participated at least once during some stage of the induction. One solution could be for different individuals to practise specific exercises and for the instructor to reinforce key teaching points and answer questions. At the end of the induction the instructor can offer group practise where they supervise everyone. The key is for the instructor to be happy the every member of the group knows how to use the equipment and perform the exercises safety and correctly.
Considerations to group inductions include:
– The purpose and structure of the induction should be made clear to the group from the outset.
– Safety and the surroundings should also be explained. The instructor should emphasise the importance of being aware of other people and the equipment they are using. Clients should also be encouraged to stay close to the group, and refrain from performing any exercises without the permission of the instructor.
– The spacing of equipment in the gym can affect demonstrations and teaching positions. It may be necessary to ask the group to move places in order to get a better view.
– Maintaining the attention of all individuals in the group needs to be considered. Asking questions is one way of maintaining awareness and attention.
– Observation and correction are easier if all clients are practising the same exercise at the same time, but there must be the equipment available.
– The number of equipment and number of clients will affect practise times available. Considerations need to be given to the other people within the gym as well.
– There will be less time and potentially fewer opportunities to offer personal activities, corrections and alternatives. A mini circuit could be planned at the end of the day to allow people to practise in which the instructor can give feedback.
Ultimately, don’t get stressed that these inductions aren’t 1-1! Give your clients the best possible opportunity to learn and feel comfortable in the gym environment, and remember to let them know you’re always there for questions and support!