Forgetting to bring important teaching tools to work happens to the best instructors, even seasoned teachers with decades of experience. I've forgotten a variety of things for my classes over the years, including appropriate footwear, props, equipment, sweat towels, change of dry clothes, cover-ups, hair bands, snacks, water bottle and even *GASP!* underwear. (I'll come back to this one in a moment.)
Two weeks ago, I forgot my Ziploc bag containing my mp3 player, back-up mp3 player, whistle and stopwatch. And I had four classes back-to-back to teach! Oh, the horror! As I unpacked my rolling tote stuffed with four classes worth of clothes, shoes, props and equipment and got to the bottom without finding my music, I had one of those "OH NO!!!!" moments. You know, the one where your stomach drops to your toes and you frantically replay the night before trying to figure out what you did with your music.
I ran out to my car and double checked, just in case, you know, I'd done something totally out of the routine like stash my music in the tailgate or glove box or under the seat.
But noooooo! My music was nowhere to be found. I had my portable Ion speaker, but nothing to hook up to it.
I rolled my teaching cart out to the pool with dread in my heart, mortally embarrassed that I'd forgotten something so crucial to my classes. Now for what it's worth, I HAD suffered a physical trauma the night before, sustaining an injury that wound up requiring a visit to urgent care the day after all this happened, and I probably shouldn't have even gone in to teach the next morning, but trooper that I am, I went in anyway. Personally, I find group fitness without music to be horribly boring and hated having to subject my class to such an experience. But the lifeguard was able to pull up some 80s hard rock on his device and the tempo actually worked for my Deep Water class so I taught my usual routine to that music.
My next class was Splash Dance--aquatic dance fitness. I hate to confess that I did not do so well at this point. Dealing with last minute crises is not my strength--I'm a planner. I tried finding a radio station on my Ion but all I could find without static was gospel and talk radio. Nuh huh. I tried singing and humming our usual music. Umm, sure if my class wanted comedy hour. Eventually I abandoned attempts at music and taught an impromptu aqua ballet barre for the rest of the class. Next time, I'll have a better attack plan.
My third class was low-impact dance fitness. My boss was in by then and loaned me her mp3 player with Aqua Zumba music. I totally improvised the class, having no idea what songs were going to play and was unfamiliar with most of them, although I recognized the Zumba rhythms from seven years as a ZIN. My problem with improvising is that I tend to blank out and teach too much repetition. But my class said they enjoyed what I taught, even if I was a bit uncomfortable.
My final class of that morning was Color & Relax--an Adult Coloring relaxation and pencil-art class. I usually play yoga music to set the mood, but I had everyone focus on socializing as they colored and all went well.
So now for the story about forgetting underwear. I was changing from business attire into Zumba clothes
for my Zumba class. The pants I'd packed were Zumba jazz pants, form-fitting and prone to visible panty lines if anything other than a thong is worn. The only underwear I had was what I'd worn to work that day under my khaki pants: comfortable, roomy, granny panties. Uh huh. The way I saw it, I only had two choices. 1) go commando or 2) wear the granny panties and have nerdy VPL. Since I was teaching at a YMCA, I didn't want to go commando and wind up with embarrassing sweat outlines in the wrong places or show a camel toe or God knows what other compromising situation going without any underwear could cause. So I sucked up my mortal embarrassment and wore big ole granny panties under my form fitting jazz pants. The panty lines were, indeed, visible, and I looked like a major nerd trying to look cool. If I'd had a jacket or shirt I could have tied around my waist to cover my butt, I would have, but alas, I had neither. But I taught the Zumba class, no one pointed and sniggered, and I survived to tell the tale.
What have you forgotten to take to work and how did you handle it? Do tell.
Lover of dance, dance-fitness and aquatic fitness.