3 Steps To Create a Killer Workout Playlist
I started teaching dance in 2011. Since then, with the help of our master trainers, we have choreographed dance routines to over 250 songs! I’d love to take credit for all of them…LOL. As you can imagine, that is a lot of routines to try to remember. While 80 percent of the routines have been filmed, the remaining 20 percent still rest somewhere in my brain in fragments. When I teach, students are always requesting songs, but every now and then the routine doesn’t always make it to the top of my memory. If you are a dance fitness instructor, you may relate! Or maybe you’ve been the student requesting a song from the teacher. Either way, there is a lot to remember when teaching dance fitness. Here are some tips for staying organized and having a stellar playlist.
How to Stay Organized
Keep a running playlist on your phone. If you’re old school, buy a writing tablet, but honestly at this point you should have a smartphone! There are many different apps that you can use to purchase songs and store them. Click HERE to see a list of free music apps! I personally like to use Spotify or iTunes. They both allow you to share your playlist, which is a perfect way to stay connected with your students. You should have at least three playlists at all times. At the beginning of each year, I will create a playlist call PlyoJam 2019 Master. By the end of the year this list may sometimes have over 50 songs. Then I create a second list call PlyoJam 2019 Old, again by the end of the year this will have over 50 songs on the playlist. Thankfully, with the apps I recommended, it’s very easy to move songs from one playlist to another. I then create a third playlist called PlyoJam 2019 Current. This is the playlist I review before each class to determine what I will be playing in class. The three playlists evolve throughout the year. If I have a special event or a demo to teach, that will always get its own playlist and labeled accordingly.
How Often Should a Song Be Played
How often you play a song in your class is important to consider. The more you perform the routine the more it will become ingrained in your head. The moves and transitions will become muscle memory. Another thing to consider is how much is too much? You do not want to over play a song in your class. You will become that teacher who appears lazy and lacking creativity. If you are a student reading this, you know exactly what I’m talking about. Big no no!
Depending on how many dance fitness classes you teach on a weekly basis, a song should only be on your current playlist for four to six weeks. That is plenty of time for the students to master the routines. Any longer, and your students will get bored and tired of hearing the songs. After four to six weeks, that song should be moved to your old playlist. Be sure to keep your old playlist in the order you add the songs. That will make it easy to reference them later. Now here is the trick! Let’s use Ariana Grande’s “7 Rings” as an example. You debuted the song in your class on January 1. You moved it off your current playlist and onto your old playlist mid-February. You put the song back onto your current playlist in 8 weeks, mid-April. At this point “7 Rings” can be sporadically played through the year, maybe once or twice a month. By this point, your students are no longer sick of the “7 Rings” and feel like badasses because they remembers the routine. By keeping your old playlist in order, you will have a better gage as to the time of year the song was put on the playlist. If you want to be even more precise, you can create an OLD playlist for each month.
Taking video will depend on how you get your choreography. If you are a PlyoJam teacher, the videos are provided and archived in the teacher’s dashboard. If you are someone who isn’t part of a brand, then taking video is highly recommended. Have a friend or a colleague film you on their smart phone. Set up an account on Vimeo. The basic package is free. This site will not block or mute your videos. Vimeo allows you categorize and search for your video. They also have an app that you can download. I recommend getting this on your phone. You will want to be able to access the video easily when you’re building your current playlist. I often find myself in my car watching video to refresh my memory of the routine that I have completely forgotten.
Here’s is an example of what our Master PlyoJam Playlist looks like on Spotify!
Click HERE to listen!
I hope these tricks help!