As your trainer, my job is to help you to be the best that you can be physically. This doesn’t mean that once you have succeeded at achieving your goals, that the work stops. For instance, if you manage to lose 10 pounds you don’t cut up your gym membership card and stop exercising because the weight will most likely return.

This week, we began a new session of line dance and though we were all happy to be back, there was some resistance to learning new dances. The consensus in the room seemed to be, “why do we need to learn new dances when we’re doing so well at the old ones?”

Part of the reason is to keep you learning because it keeps us young.

It’s easy to sit back and feel accomplished but harder to continually strive to be better. Taking yourself out of your comfort zone results in calorie expenditure because of the effort and concentration involved in learning a new skill, and it keeps our listening skills sharp. Don’t worry, we will go back to the old dances but I want you to challenge yourself to master the new material.

In this group of 32 dancers, I have approximately 6 students who are new to my class and they are also relatively new to dance in general. Whenever I have mixed groups like this, I chose to put everyone in the same boat (if you will) by offering fresh material. This way the beginner students will not feel as lost because all of us are struggling together. If suddenly we all start dancing like experts to the old songs, new students can feel inferior and decide to never return. I have seen this happen time and time again. My eye is always on the big picture. I want my new students to feel comfortable, so that they will want to keep dancing and I do this by putting us on a level playing field, or dance floor.

I also need to challenge myself to keep learning new material, that I then have to teach to others. It is one thing to be able to perform my choreography, and quite another to be able to communicate it effectively. If there is nothing new to teach, I can get rusty on the actual teaching part of my job. I do not wish to simply be a leader but a teacher. There is a difference.

So there you have it, my three reasons for continually adding new material. I look forward to our December party when you will have mastered all of the new dances and I’ll get to sit back and share in your success. This is the best present for any teacher!

See you Monday!