First things first… What is PiYo?
From the PiYo website: “PiYo combines the muscle-sculpting, core-firming benefits of Pilates with the strength and flexibility advantages of yoga. And, we crank up the speed to deliver a true fat-burning, low-impact workout that leaves your body looking long, lean, and incredibly defined.”
And now… Why PiYo?
I first had the chance to take PiYo with Chalene Johnson, the incredibly charismatic creator of the workout, at the IDEA World Fitness Convention back in August.
I was really excited to try the class during the conference because Katy spoke so highly of the workout. After one class, I walked away raving about the workout. I absolutely LOVED it. During my quick review of the workout on my blog, mentioned that I thought it would be a fun workout to teach one day. Well, I am planning to do just that as soon as my new gym has an opening in their group exercise schedule (likely in December). An added bonus? This certification counts toward my CEUs for my AFAA group exercise certification, so that’s a big plus!
Now let’s get to the recap, shall we? Below you will find a recap of my experience through a Q&A format featuring many of your questions…
- Do you need to be a certified personal trainer or certified group exercise instructor to teach PiYo?
No. But many gyms do want their instructors to have at least a general group exercise certification. I have my personal training certification through NASM and my group exercise certification through AFAA and highly recommend both. You also do not need any prior yoga or Pilates experience to obtain your PiYo certification, though I personally found it very helpful to have an understanding of basic yoga poses.
- How long is the certification process?
The certification process takes place during a one-day training that lasts for eight hours. My training went from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- How much does the certification cost?
- What should I wear?
Workout clothes! During the certification, you will take one master class with a PiYo LIVE master trainer. It’s super sweaty, so I was happy I packed a new shirt and sports bra to change into once we were done. I would also highly recommend packing a sweatshirt or pullover to keep yourself warm when you’re not working out.
(Photo credit: PiYo LIVE Master Trainer Amanda Henderson)
- What should I bring with me?
I packed the following: A mat, water bottle, towel, cleansing wipes, lots of snacks, my lunch and a pen and paper to take notes.
- What about lunch?
You’re given a 35-45 minute break for lunch. Most people packed a lunch (myself included), but a few walked to nearby restaurants to quickly grab something to eat.
- What can I expect to learn during the training?
During the training, you will not only take a PiYo class with a master trainer, but you will go through lots of practicals that involve group work.
During this time, groups of four to five review different tracks and practice cuing, identifying beats in music, choreography, modifications and more. Your master trainer will spend lots of time discussing how and when to cue and will also demonstrate proper modifications for various exercises. After you’ve had time to practice, each group must come to the front of the class and demo everything, but the entire class is incredibly supportive and encouraging, so there’s nothing to be worried about!
Time is also spent on discussing ways to make your PiYo class yours. I did not realize PiYo LIVE instructors have the ability to make their class 30 or 45 minutes if desired. You may also change the counts of the exercises within a song, but you may not change the songs or the order of the tracks.
- Do you feel prepared to teach right away when you’re done?
No. There is a lot of choreography to learn and there’s no way you could leave the training and teach the next day. You’re given a pre-designed workout DVD to use to help you learn all of the choreography with choreography notes, but mastering everything will take time and a lot of practice.
Our master trainer recommended giving yourself a month or two to really learn it before diving in and teaching unless you’re great with choreography and have a lot of time to dedicate to learning the exercises and practicing.
- How long does your certification last?
Two years. But our master trainer said this may change in the future and that we may be one of the last groups to have our certification last a full two years. It sounds like they may be changing it to a one-year certification soon.
- Do you have to follow the choreography you receive?
Yes. You can make small changes here and there related to the counts and how long you want to hold certain exercises, but you must follow the exercises and poses demonstrated on the DVDs and you must use the provided music and do the tracks in the order they’re demoed on the DVD.
- How often are you given new choreography to learn? Do you have to pay for new lessons?
A new lesson comes out every two months and you must buy these lessons. Only your first lesson is included in the cost of your PiYo certification.
And that’s it!! I tried my best to cover everything, but if I missed something you’re curious about, please let me know in the comments section of this post and I’ll definitely get back to you. And to anyone out there who may be interested in obtaining their PiYo LIVE certification, GOOD LUCK!!!
Questions of the Day
- Have you ever taken a PiYo LIVE class? What did you think?
- Have you ever tried the PiYo DVDs?