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3-day IMT: The verdict

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Initial Module Training (IMT) underwent a radical overhaul in Asia Pacific in January this year with the previous 2-day modules being replaced with 3-day modules.

If you trained as an Instructor eons ago, you will recall that we used to conduct 3-day IMTs. The current version is slightly different – with day-3 being Certification day. No more members standing in front of the camera when you are trying to film your Certification class. No battery running out. No Certifications getting lost in the dreaded mail. Instead, on day-3 (which is approximately 8-weeks post the first 2-days) you will present on 3-occassions and receive instant feedback from your Trainer. Successfully pass day-3 and you walk away a Certified Les Mills Instructor.

In the past week the first 3-day IMTs were completed and we spoke to Andy from the ACT, Channy from VIC (who have both previously completed 2-day IMT) and Kate from QLD (first time instructor) about their experiences with the new format.

Andy was the perfect candidate to pick his brains about the new format, as he has trained in a staggering 12 programs, with BODYCOMBAT being one of the last programs to conquer (for those playing at home he just needs to get his act together in RPM and LES MILLS BARRE). Apart from being one extra day, we ask Andy what the main difference in his experience between the old 2-day IMT and the current 3-day IMT: “the transformations after day 3 was huge! Where you might get a bit lax after day 2 and take your time in certifying with the old system, the 8-weeks leading up to day 3 keeps you on track and consistently practicing – it’s so great to just be certified after the third day!”

“I’m an impatient person – so the 8-weeks was a challenge!” says Channy, who has her fair share of experience in 2-day IMTs. What she says she lacked in patience though, she acknowledges that the 8-week period made evident the efforts and improvements of trainees from day-1 to day-3 “they [the Trainer] know where we were at at day-1 and [can] see if there has actually been any efforts placed to improve by day-3. Evidence of progress and effort to improve… I think makes better instructors overall”.

The 8-weeks leading up to day-3 are spent working through a Roadmap (workbook) which guides you through exercises, tasks and reflections week-to-week with an end game to get you to day-3 with the tools and practice to pass Certification. Kate a first time Instructor successfully passed her Certification on day-3 just last week (yay!) and says she felt well supported through the process from following the Roadmap, the Instructor Specialist team and her 3-mentors who she is forever grateful for!

The “massive inspiration” (and a little bit of pressure!) that made Kate bite the bullet and sign up for her first module, was her BODYCOMBAT Instructor who is “always positive and so passionate and looked like she was having so much fun!” The pressure came in the form of a looming cut-off date for the next BODYCOMBAT module: “it was now or never”.

“To be honest the module was the making of me – it really opened my eyes to what I could achieve”. Kate was meticulous in her preparation in the lead up to day-3. Following the Roadmap, team-teaching, taking on the feedback from her mentors and doing her own practice. She admits self-doubt plagued her all the way, but her determination and love of the program pushed her from week-to-week. A shining moment for Kate was during the 8-weeks a member accosted her and said she only came to the class because she knew she was teaching.

What would you say to those participants hesitant to take the leap to become an instructor? “Don’t think the fact you have done nothing like this before as a barrier – because they want you to pass. The support is there. Make a plan and keep yourself open to receive feedback. As long as you are prepared to put in the work and commit – you can do it!”

NB. Kate is teaching her first BODYCOMBAT classes over the Easter long-weekend :)