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Our staff is amazing! I was horrible when I started teaching


Hello warriors,

Sometimes being an instructor can be a challenge. I look at the staff we have and how young they are, not much younger than I was when I actually inherited a studio at 17 years old. And I am impressed that they're dedication, and asking me after they run a class on how they could do it better.

I feel successful not just in a studio but I'm creating the next generation of leaders to inherit who could very well be their destiny.


But if you heard my story, you would never know I wanted to be a teacher or how I ended up as a teacher. Here's my story on how I ended up as a full-time instructor barely out of high school and with no practical teaching experience.


It was 1994, and I used to work the front desk at a studio that we reopened after hurricane Andrew. It's where the Don's bait and tackle is right now. The head instructor was a very good instructor and could manage large classes and was able to come up with great class ideas on the fly.


He was flawed, I won't get into his flaws or his personal issues but they were there. One day as I came into the studio as I always did set up everything 3:00 p.m. rolls around and I don't see my instructor. I wait 20 minutes go by, he's still not there. It is now 3:45 p.m. and the students are coming in for a 4:00 class.


At this time I really didn't do anything more than a cyst on the floor when I was needed and mostly handled any front desk questions or issues. But these kids were here, and expecting a class. I decided it was better to try and teach a class, and hopes maybe he was running late and he would be there soon. I ended up teaching the first class, then the second, the third and basically every class that day, a total of six.


..... I was horrible. I couldn't handle the kids, I started a class yelling and finished the class screaming. I felt like a failure.


Next day rolls around and again the instructor doesn't show up no call, and the kids are coming in again. I had to do it again, I still was not that good at it.


Feeling dejected, I sat and said what am I doing wrong. I looked at it from a fresh pair of eyes and decided that I wasn't organized enough. Because, the school was designed to service the head instructor but not another instructor stepping in. I invented a system did you prepared and ready for every class so far. I organized my day, I knew which kids were coming in, and I had backup lesson plans just in case. After that, classes went great.


I started running the school, and my instructor basically needed time off. He was burned out. To save the school I took over the role as head instructor, and had to sign up officer at the same time. And ran every class and had free reign on how to teach. I learned I could train people to be better than me at instruction, and to hope they never have that experience I had again. Almost 30 years later here we are, and I think I've succeeded at that.


I am proud of the students but more importantly, I am very proud of our staff.

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