Just a year ago, I was becoming an indoor cycling addict while preparing for the annual MS Ride. The indoor training made me stronger on the road, which helped me accomplish my first century on that ride. Doing so also motivated me to look into getting certified to teach. I was excited to find an upcoming Spinning instructor certification nearby, but after thinking about it a few days, I discovered the class had filled.
Because there was a September class listed, I put it in the back of my mind to check it out again after some of my summer activities ended. When I did get back to it, that class was full, too.
The other day I looked at the site again, and good news, there’s another April class offered in Tucson. But it’s the SAME WEEKEND as the MS Ride. What to do?
On one hand, I can raise money for a worthy cause, while doing something I enjoy with a dozen or so of my riding buddies. The scenery would be awesome, with a new location and route this year in the Cottonwood/Sedona area. I’ve already registered for this event, and I’d hate to miss it.
On the other hand, I could spend that Saturday indoors, pushing myself outside my comfort zone, learning a new skill, along with a bunch of strangers who are probably younger and in better shape than I am. For the privilege of doing this, I would pay $325, and have a potential new career.
Well, maybe “new career” is a stretch, since I’ve been told that fitness instructors really don’t make much money. However, I’m a regular at my local gym, so it makes sense to get paid for my time instead paying for a membership.
If I add some other specialties, such as senior fitness, I could expand to several recreation centers and teach more hours a week. The senior market represents a growing segment in the coming years, and being a lagging Baby Boomer myself, I would be just young enough to stay ahead of the curve, and keep working well into my own retirement years.
So, what to do? I wish it didn’t have to be either/or, but at this time the Spinning organization can’t tell me if there will be any other instructor certification classes in Arizona this year. I could go to one in California, or just hope they add a local class in the fall. I could complete an “indoor cycling” certification through another organization, but as far as I can tell, most require you to be a fitness instructor prior to certification, and they don’t carry the same reputation as the original capital S Spinning program with the Circle R after its name.
As I list the pros and cons, I seem to have convinced myself to go for it. Of course, if I do, that means taking the next step of applying for work in a field where I have no experience. The business major in me wants to know if the market is saturated with instructors, and whether I could earn enough money to make it worth my while. I don’t know if anyone has that answer, but I do know that without certification the number is zero. Without it, I maintain the status quo of being a mom who used to work in marketing and communications, volunteers for a dog rescue, rides a bike and frequents the gym.