UK fitness events for Dance Fitness Instructors
If you’re a dance fitness instructor or have your level 2 ETM, you’re probably thinking about which events you should attend this year.
There are many exhibitions for fitness professionals in the UK, but not all are appropriate for the dance fitness community. But find the right one and they’re a great way to learn new things, meet great contacts and experience some of the newest brands around.
So which one is for you? In this blog, we look at the pros and cons of 3 major fitness shows we attended in 2017. They’re by no means the only ones, but we can’t review them all in one blog!
1. International Fitness Showcase (IFS), Blackpool (chrysalispromotions.com)
3 days of jam packed sessions celebrating everything relating to dance, dance fitness and exercise to music.
- We felt it was the most intimate of the 3 events as it is in the smallest venue (Blackpool Winter Gardens).
- Easy access to the faces behind the dance fitness brands so you can find out if they’re the right “fit” for you as an instructor.
- Unlike the other events, the classes take place in individual halls and rooms. This can mean a better vibe and connection with the instructors teaching. The timetable is jam packed for the full three days and includes sessions with international dance teachers and performers as well as dance fitness brands.
- It is as much a social event as it is for business. This one probably had the greatest number of class customers as well as instructors and brands. As a result, it’s a good opportunity for a weekend away with some of your customers to cement the relationships and promote the brand(s) you teach, whether it’s Fuse-Fit, Clubbercise, Sosa or Pound.
- Even though the event itself is sociable and there’s a gala dinner on the Saturday night, there’s not much else to do in Blackpool if you are looking to go out on the town for a night.
- As it’s not in a large arena, there aren’t many tasty or healthy food options either within the event or outside.
- The event has become an institution on the dance fitness scene and it can be intimidating for a newcomer when everyone else seems to know each other. As a result, there was more of a competitive edge to this one and less networking opportunities for those that don’t feel comfortable pushing themselves into already well-established networks.
2. MOVEFIT, London Excel (moveitdance.co.uk/whatson)
MOVEFIT was launched in 2017 as a sub-section of MOVEIT – the UK’s biggest dance and performing arts event.
- Really accessible if you live in London.
- The classes take place on an open stage so you can easily hop from one to another with sessions only lasting 20 minutes (giving you the opportunity to sample loads – either by participating or simply spectating).
- If you’re from a dance background, it’s a great event to get you buzzing as there’s so much going on.
- When you want a rest, you can see some amazing dance shows in the MOVEIT section!
- It can feel a little impersonal at times – the venue is enormous!
- It’s not one for the faint hearted as the open stage can make it a bit intimidating to take part in the classes as you have an audience.
- The open stage also means the sound can be diluted, which can sometimes mean it doesn’t feel like it has the same vibe as some of the other events.
3. Body Power Fitness – formerly Leisure Industry Week (LIW) (bodypower.com/expo/bp)
In 2017, Leisure Industry Week became Body Power Fitness and as a result, became a completely different animal. This fitness trade show is focused on business to business, but don’t let that put you off.
- There’s a network lounge and group talks, so some great opportunities to do some networking.
- If you’re a personal trainer or nutritionist as well as an instructor, there are some really top class speakers at this one. Good for education and upping your game!
- There’s a demo area for group exercise and it’s located in an inflatable tent providing a bit of privacy.
- Great contacts if you put yourself out there – gym owners, local authorities, trusts, industry magazines, online educators.
- As might be expected, there are quite a lot of players in the strength and bodybuilding industry attending due to the “Body Power” branding – that can sometimes make it feel like quite a male focused environment.
- We felt the Group X demos tended to have relatively poor attendance.
- Not many dance fitness brands attended in 2017 due to the new structure. However, Head of Education Mark Laws is pushing for more group exercise and female focus in the show for 2018.
TOP TIPS WHEREVER YOU’RE GOING
And if there’s one thing that’s just as – if not more – important than the event(s) you choose to attend, it’s the preparation you do beforehand! If you want to make the most of the experience remember to:-
- Research the timetables and exhibitors online so you can plan each day in advance to get the most from a show.
- Be brave and talk to everyone and anyone – you don’t know where it may lead! Head of Group Exercise for David Lloyd anyone?
- Go with a friend to help push you out of your comfort zone and try new things.
- If there’s a brand you’re interested in, contact them beforehand and arrange in advance to meet at the show for a chat.
- If you’re already teaching, make it a jolly and get some clients to go too!