Becoming an instructor – part 3: Johanna

Published on October 18, 2018

As you may know, Friskis is run entirely by volunteers. But what you may not know is the drive and dedication that motivates our volunteers!

That is never more true than with our instructors. before they get to wear their white instructor t-shirts they must undergo a long and selective training process that lasts several months and includes training at our headquarters in Sweden.

Four of our newest instructors, Magda, Claudia, Johanna and Daniela just recently graduated and they kindly agreed to share their experiences.

See also:


Chapter 3: Johanna’s First Session

So here it is, tonight I’m giving my first official Friskis Jympa Medium session as an instructor! Packing my bag in the morning… indoor shoes – check, bottle of water – check, music – check, my instructor outfit – CHECK! Leave work on time, ask at the VUB reception which hall we have… just to be sure. I’m a bit too early to make sure I can check it all out, help my great host Thomas set up the music equipment, ask the previous hall users to leave as our time has come. And all the while I’m rather nervous, scenarios running through my head of my mind going blank and forgetting the moves. If only I get this bit right, if I only I don’t mess up that bit… I must improve this and that as mentioned after my licensing session… I hope I’m going to be smiley and energetic enough, so that people will like my session…

After many years as a Friskis host, I’m now speaking at the start (that’s new), rather than at the end of the session… I welcome the participants, only a small group today but everyone joins in very actively. And we’re off! I forgot one move, I messed up something else, but before I even realise it, the session is over! I’m exhausted, but so very happy. Don’t think anyone noticed the little mistakes.

Next Monday, 7pm back in the VUB, ready for my second session. More people than last week, I recognise a lot of the regulars, more pressure… they know what to expect so I better do a good job, but somehow I’m less nervous this week. We start, and again before I know it the 55 minutes are over. I didn’t make the same mistakes as last time. Positive and encouraging feedback from the participants and my host. Felt much more relaxed and confident, caught myself singing along with some of the songs, and smiling more than last week, generally buzzing!

Third session… replacing Nolwenn on Wednesday evening. I’m keen to practise as much as possible so I get more confident in my session, so I was very happy to take the opportunity to replace one of the other instructors. A bigger group of participants again, eager to join the Jympa session. Still a little bit nervous, because I’m replacing someone else and I’m still fairly new to all this. But it felt great! The first beats start, I start the moves, everyone follows, and I’m enjoying it so much!

Every session I am enjoying it more and more, growing in confidence, energy and just feeling more ‘natural’ in my instructor role! Looking back now, 6 weeks after our licensing session, I’m so glad I signed up to become a Friskis Jympa instructor and started this journey nearly one year ago!
Yes, it was a lot of work. Yes, I was doubting myself at times. Yes, I tested my limits and had some moments where I thought maybe it was too much (getting married and having an amazing honeymoon in between the training sessions in Sweden seemed like a good idea at the time, but then an unexpected appendix operation kept me from doing sports and which left me with no possibility of preparing/practising my session until only a few weeks before the licensing session).

But I’ve had so much fun, learned so many new things about Friskis and Jympa, and also sports physiology, leadership, music and myself. Such a great support team, starting from the other instructors and volunteers who encouraged me to sign up; the great support from Lene (our education coordinator) during the selection process, training period, licensing preparation and follow-up; Emma and Nick, our coaches in Sweden; Sophie, one of our experienced instructors, helping me prepare my session and licensing; Magda, Daniela, Claudia, my fellow new instructors who I shared this journey with. And of course my host, Thomas, and all the participants who every week, give me positive energy and smiles at my session.

Thank you to all of you for making this such an incredibly great experience. And for anyone thinking about signing up in the future… don’t doubt yourself, you can do it, you will love it and you will be amazing 🙂


You can find Johanna’s first Jympa playlist here:


    To leave a comment, click here

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    • Not a member yet? Subscribe to our newsletter

    • Newsletter

    • Follow us on Facebook

      facebook twitter

      Send this to friend