BodyStep: Best Step Aerobics on Earth!


I remember the days when I thought I would never be able to make it through BodyStep without falling off the step, without stopping for a 5-minute break to catch my breath, without secretly cursing the instructor in my head. In only took about a year, but eventually I got to the point I felt competent as a class participant and could even take high options more than half the time. One of the great accomplishments of my life!

A few weeks ago, it looked like I might have an opportunity to go through BodyStep training – that is, become an instructor. It’s so completely insane I’m shaking my head at myself even as I write this. On the one hand, why not? I love the program. It’s so much fun. I love the energy. And on the days I do BodyStep, I burn so many calories I get to eat whatever I want. Quite thrilling! Also, I think I’d be a pretty good BodyStep instructor once I got the hang of it!

On the other hand, am I completely crazy? I’ve never taught cardio before. I often have to remind myself to breathe in the middle of BodyStep just because I’m working so hard. And I want to teach it? That does mean talking while you’re doing BodyStep, you know.

My Step instructor friends tell me it gets easier. And I’ve had a lot of people say they think it must be hard to teach BodyFlow and talk at the same time, but it’s not. You get used to it. So I suppose you get used to talking while teaching aerobics, too.

In any case, the BodyStep training isn’t going to happen anytime soon. It did motivate me enough to get a step bench to work with at home. I found a certification tape someone had put up on YouTube (illegally, but I’m not the Les Mills police!) and did that at home. Then I pulled a couple of old Reebox videos and other old step aerobics videos off YouTube.

I hated them! They were either too repetitive or not repetitive enough. I told myself it was just the old style of doing step aerobics, and surely freestyle step has evolved since then. So I got some videos off NetFlix, and I hated them, too.

I just don’t get freestyle step aerobics. There is so much sashaying, v-step to a-step to sashay to diamond step to over the bench…. It’s so hard to follow. It’s very dance-y. (Interestingly, I’ve witnessed a few complaints on the BodyStep forums that BodyStep isn’t good step aerobics because “freestyle step is supposed to be dancey”; now I see what they are comparing it to!) I don’t get my heart rate up because these workouts hardly get you on the bench at all, except for the occasional basic march.

BodyStep has you working on the bench – usually – from the warm-up and doesn’t let you off of it until the party track. You’re always reflecting the instructor so you don’t have to think about what to do – you just have to keep moving and work it, baby. There are the occasional moves that work around the bench, but the instructor always previews it and there are only a few such combos, so you don’t lose the heart-rate-boosting intensity.

Until I did this little experimental foray into the world of step aerobics, I really didn’t know how much better BodyStep was than your traditional step class. I shouldn’t have been surprised. It’s Les Mills, after all – It is head and shoulders above. It totally kicks butt.That’s not even to mention the music – which is always the best, really energetic and motivating.

And maybe…. I will have the courage to be a BodyStep instructor someday!

2 responses »

  1. I cannot agree with you more. Please keep moving forward with your plans to train and ultimately teach BodyStep. You have the passion for and the understanding of the program needed to keep you moving forward. My husband and I are both certified BS instructors and know that the experience of training, getting certified, and teaching together several times a week truly is one of the best things we could have ever done for ourselves. Good luck to you from 2 crazy BSers (!)
    in Iowa. When they say this program makes you feel liberated and alive, they sure ain’t lyin’!!!

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