How does the online teacher training course work?
Upon registering for the training, you'll create a unique user ID and login for our online classroom. Then, you'll have access to the entire training so you can go at your own pace. The program is designed to be completed within 8 weeks, with an additional four weeks factored in to complete and submit your video practicum. But because we love you, we've given you access to the online course for 6 months from the time you register. How quickly you obtain your certification is entirely up to you. We've had students breeze through it in just four weeks, while others go past the 3-month mark. If you find yourself in the latter group, just know that you'll have the option to extend your course access after the 6-month period has passed. You can keep the online course for a monthly fee of just $6 or upgrade to licensed status for only $10 per month (after becoming certified/ passing your video practicum). Cancel at any time. Our main training manual is 120 pages of written content, but this will be broken up into bite-size pieces that give you plenty of time to digest and study the material. You'll also be supported with video lessons, and you'll receive downloadable student class handouts, research, studies and marketing materials. You'll be in the same virtual experience with other hoopers and we'll convene via a private Facebook group too. We'll be there to answer any questions that surface and to support you throughout the entire teacher training process.
How much time do I have to complete the program?
The online course is designed to be completed within 8 weeks of registering, with an additional four weeks factored in for the video submission (12 weeks total). But we've doubled the time expected to complete the program so you can go at your own pace. But don't wait until the last minute. With online courses, it's best to block specific days and times for your course work. Systematic, steady progress is the way to go, to keep you on track. Study and ask questions before taking your practicum. Upon registering for the course, you'll be able to download the entire training manual too. So, if you prefer to have all of the content in hard copy form, we've got you covered. The online lesson plans are designed for you to learn at a steady pace, and our trainers are ready and able to support you every step of the way.
Practicums? You mean I have to take tests?
Yes. As continuing education providers of the American Council on Exercise, we are required to have our trainees submit both written and movement practicums. By the end of the 12 weeks, you'll need to successfully complete these steps before your certification is awarded. It's how we measure progress, and it's what helps us ensure that every Hoola-Fit teacher has a sound understanding of the content. The written practicums are short, multiple choice tests at the end of each section, and the movement practicum is a video submission. But don't let this scare you. It's up to us to make sure that you're well prepared and equipped for the assessments. Throughout your training experience, you'll develop the skills and knowledge to rock them! You should also know that every Hoola-Fit Trainer is ACE-Certified. So, we have to take practicums too. We need to earn continuing education credits to keep our fitness certifications valid. In other words, professional development is a vital part of staying current in our industry (and as the global hooping community evolves). We take it seriously, and we practice what we preach.
What if I don't pass the tests?
If you don't pass the practicums, then you'll have two weeks to try again. During that time, we're going to hone in on the specific areas of learning that need to be improved upon. Please know that we're here to set you up for success, and it's not our intention to fail you. But in the rare case that it should happen, we're going to work with you to accomplish your goal of becoming Hoola-Fit Certified. If a passing score isn't achieved by the second go-around, then we'll address next steps on a case-by-case basis.
Do I need a certification to teach hoop dance?
Does a first-time driver need Driver's Ed before getting behind the wheel? While it's physically possible to drive a car without the course, it's not advised. We believe the same is true for teaching any form of group fitness. It's also best if you are certified in your specialty area. Having a basic understanding of injury prevention, safety precautions, different student learning styles, and structuring efficient class formats are fundamental components of being a responsible instructor. It's also worth mentioning that the majority of well-known exercise regimens offer teacher trainings. And maybe you've already been though one - in which case, you're likely more equipped to teach hooping than someone who's never been trained to teach group fitness. After successful completion of another program (like a 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training or AFAA personal training certification, for example), you should have a general understanding of how to lead safe and effective group fitness classes. Is there still more to learn, in terms of hooping-specific instruction? Yes - a ton, actually, and this is one of the main reasons why we train hoop dance teachers. Think of it this way: Would you prefer to sign up for hooping classes from someone who's been through a credible teacher training program led by veteran, established leaders in the hoop community or from someone who's never been trained to teach? We believe that teaching is just as much of an art as hooping itself. There's a flow to it, and there's A LOT to learn. Plus, why re-invent the wheel and go through years of growing pains (like we did)? As hooping grows and evolves, training programs like Hoola-Fit help to further legitimize our art form in the fitness industry, too.
Why is it important to be ACE-Approved?
Being approved by the American Council on Exercise is the secret weapon that helps our instructors get into gyms and fitness centers throughout the United States. With the approval, we're also able to provide continuing education credits to ACE-Certified fitness pros. The American Council on Exercise is considered the "authority on fitness." This is also the organization that helped to legitimize hoop dance in the fitness world, after releasing their 2011 ACE-Sponsored Study titled, "Hooping - Effective Workout or Child's Play?" The study's findings (which included research by doctors and university professors) indicated that "exercisers can expect similar results from hooping as they’d get from boot-camp classes, step aerobics and cardio kickboxing" and "hooping is an excellent form of exercise." Because of this research, we spent more than a year working on our curriculum, in an effort to meet ACE's high standards. As a result, we didn't release Hoola-Fit until January of 2012, after we earned the stamp of approval from ACE for our live trainings. It's also important to note that the ACE approval process is different for online curriculums than live trainings. Our online programming is currently being evaluated, and this is the main reason why we aren't releasing our distance training programs until 2019. So, as you can tell, being ACE-Approved is wildly important to us, to the fitness community, and to our certified instructors.
How is the online training different than the live training?
This is our hardest question to answer, and we're going to be totally honest with you: Distance learning is not as personal, nor is it as hands-on. In all honesty, we're not entirely sure how to replicate the magic that happens in our live trainings, but that won't stop us from trying. This is the reason why it took us approximately 7 years to finally offer courses online. Being face-to-face with our trainees is so very special because it gives us a chance to bond with our Hoola-Fit teachers (and for them to bond with eachother). This, in turn, creates a true sense of community. During the live trainings, we have the real-time ability to troubleshoot and answer questions as they arise. The certification is also a lot faster in person (it's a 2-day process live vs. 8-12 weeks online). And when we part ways after our live training weekends, with a new group of empowered instructors who are jazzed up and ready to rock their classes, it's quite beautiful. We want Hoola-Fit teachers to really take that energy in. Our hope is that they'll then replicate the community-building vibe with their own students, after returning to their respective cities. So, going online was a tough decision for us - but ultimately, this is what we determined: our reach is limited without offering distance learning. And if we really go back to our WHY (the reason we created Hoola-Fit in the first place), it's because we want this powerful, transformational art form to reach more people, in more places, so we can impact more lives in a positive way. Therefore, we need online trainings to help make that happen. Of course, there are pros to pursuing the certification online also! Learning in the comfort of your own home might be reason enough to go the online route. Some may choose distance learning to avoid added travel expenses and/or time off work. Still another reason might be the convenience of going at your own pace vs. having all of the content crammed into a 2-day training. So, please take a moment to really think about which training experience will best support you. If you feel as though you'd learn best by being in-person with us, then please consider joining us at our next live event. You can also request a host packet by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org - if you'd like for Hoola-Fit to come to your city.
How is the Hoola-Fit Kids different than your flagship course?
While some of the core foundational moves are the same, the way we teach them to children is totally different. It's also important to note that kids don't have the same motivations for exercising as adults. Therefore, we need to meet their specific needs with a core focus on FUN. Simply put, our children's programming includes tons of games and team-building activities to get kids engaged and moving. It also includes class rituals to keep children inspired and coming back. We offer age-appropriate lesson plans for the little ones and even teach you how to empower older kids with class leadership roles. It's our mission to instill healthy habits in children of all ages, to set them up for a lifetime of fitness. Our Hoola-Fit Kids program creator (Abby) is an ACE-Certified Youth Fitness Specialist whose spent years honing her craft. Fun Fact: Her kids programming makes up more than half of her income as a play professional. In our Hoola-Fit Kids Teacher Training, you're going to learn all of her business building secrets and how to book kids hooping gigs. There's a huge opportunity to create abundance in this realm! So, if working with children is where your true passion lies, then this is the training for you.
How will I be supported after I complete the course?
You'll have access to Hoola-Fit Forward, an innovative community of hoop dance teachers who've been through our training program. There, you'll receive mentorship and ongoing support. So, if you run into any challenges after you start teaching, we're there to assist. Any time we make updates to the curriculum, you'll have access to that as well. You can also log into your student account anytime you need a refresher. You'll have downloadable marketing materials available, to help you get the word out, generate excitement, and gauge interest for your classes. Last but not least, as a licensed instructor, you'll have permission to use the Hoola-Fit logo and reap the benefits of our brand recognition. Included with your training is a complimentary year 1 license. You will then be charged an annual fee of $99, to remain a licensed instructor with Hoola-Fit.