Dance is the UK’s fastest growing art form with more than 4.8million people regularly attending community dance groups each year. There are a number of reasons that have attributed to the dance boom. Not only is the country becoming far more aware of the health and fitness benefits that derive from dancing, but television programmes such as Strictly Come Dancing and Got To Dance have reignited people’s passion for dance.

Each evening, up and down the country, people of all ages, sex, ability and experience in dance are signing up to classes in their local gym. Dance studio or community town hall. However, as numbers continue to grow, an issue is slowly starting to emerge: quite simply, there aren’t enough dance instructors. If you’ve always dreamt of one day making a career as a dance teacher, then there’s no better time than now.

The Role of a Dance Instructor

Are you a creative, confident individual with a passion for dance that is able to demonstrate routines and lead by example? If so, then this job could be perfect for you.

A dance instructor has many roles:

  • Choreographing dance routines for individuals as well as entire groups
  • Demonstrating simple steps to designing complex dance pieces and performances
  • Recording progress, evaluating performances and providing feedback.
  • Teaching dance theory
  • Devising dance routines to help people lose weight
  • Developing fun classes for all abilities

As you can see, there’s a lot more to becoming a dance instructor than you might think. It’s a challenging profession but an extremely rewarding one. It requires commitment, dedication, patience and perseverance. You will need to be able to communicate and motivate as well as harness the enthusiasm and energy that is burning within a dance lesson.

Not only that, but you need to understand the health and safety risks that are associated with dance classes. Some sessions can have up to 20 students in a class and it’s important you take the wellbeing of each individual into consideration. As a dance instructor, you need to ensure that you are protected against claims that may arise from third party personal injury. Our insurance policy gives full cover should any accident occur to you or your students.

Where do I sign up?

Well, it’s not quite as easy as that. While experience goes a long way into becoming a dance instructor, whether you want to be a local dance instructor, work privately or in a state school, you will need to gain some qualifications.

The qualification you need is dependent on the type of teaching you want to do.

In schools and colleges:

In order to work in a school you need Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). All primary school teachers need to be trained in all subjects, but you are able to develop your expertise in specialist subjects such as physical education that would incorporate dance classes. In secondary school, you are able to teach dance as a single subject.

Remember, as a teacher, you will need to hold a postgraduate qualification (PGCE) and have a recognised profile as a practising professional performer.

For more information go to


To teach dance privately, you need a qualification that has been awarded by organisations validated by the Council for Dance and Education Training (CDET). The Royal Academy of Dance and the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing are two of schools that have been validated by CDET. The CDET also accredits courses that have been offered by professional schools and colleges. To find out more about CDET and their list of accredited schools and colleges go to:

A life after dance:

A lot of dance instructors are retired performers. While they are unable to teach in schools and colleges, they are able to teach privately. Visit for information on dance instructor careers and qualifications.

Become a part of the boom

The interest that is surrounding dance has never been greater and what’s more, it doesn’t look like stopping anytime soon. As classes expand, the demand for instructors will increase, and this is where you can help.

Whether you’re a retired dancer, a student, or simply share a passion for dance, then becoming a teacher could be the job for you.

If you’re interested in becoming a dance instructor or teacher, then visit 



Matt’s 12 stone challenge

Name: Matt

Age: 20

Height: 6ft 2

Weight: 64kg

Aim: to be 76kg by April 2015

Hi, I’m Matt, a social media executive for Insure4Sport. This winter I’ve set myself the challenge of building my strength and general fitness with the aim to be 12kg heavier by April, the start of the 2015 cricket season.

As an amateur fast bowler, last season I struggled towards the end of my spells because of a lack of fitness and core strength; this had come about through years of not working on my endurance fitness (running).

So the aim is to build my muscular endurance for those long days on the cricket field next summer, whilst training my muscular strength for those explosive moments in the game.

Every month I will bring you an update of my progress on my weight gain and general fitness. And let me know if you have any advice that you think could be worthwhile – it would be greatly appreciated!


I will be going to the gym three times per week and working on different aspects on each visit:

Monday – Cardio / Abs / Shoulders

Wednesday – Chest / Biceps / Cardio

Friday – Triceps / Back / Legs

The overall aim is to build my endurance levels to be able to produce high quality performances for longer, whilst also building strength in key areas. As a cricketer, shoulders and arms are key to batting and bowling, the bigger your shoulders and arms, the further you can hit the ball and the faster you can bowl the ball.


I would already class my diet as reasonably healthy, I always eat three solid meals but I sometimes can’t help myself with ‘junk food’.  I’d like to motivate myself to take my diet to the next level by limiting ‘junk food’ to once a week maximum.

As I have such a high metabolism and struggle putting weight on, I have decided to start drinking protein shakes to help me ‘bulk’. In each shake I add one heaped scoop of protein powder, which contains 50g of blended protein and 250g of carbs. I also add 500ml of semi skimmed milk and one heaped scoop of vanilla ice cream.

This means I can take on anywhere up to 1500 calories in between meals which is really good for somebody with such a high metabolism. To go over the daily recommendation of 2500 calories quite easily, as long as I am going over the recommendation by eating the right foods, I should start to see some success.

“In order to build muscle, you have to consume more calories than you burn off.” –

Last night’s session

Last night was Monday (27th October) so my night consisted of Chest / Biceps / Cardio

  1. 10 minute run (1.2 miles)
  2. 20 minute cycle (3.8 miles)
  3. 30 kg chest press (3 sets of 10)
  4. 10 kg bicep curls (3 sets of 10)

Upon leaving the gym I had a brief rest in the steam room and sauna, before going home for a substantial feed and an early night. I wasn’t to know last night when I went to sleep what was to greet me this morning, terrible pains in my chest and my tendons in my fore arms from lifting weights, any slight movement felt like my arm was ripping my chest in two!

If only you could see me you’d be able to agree that I don’t look like the sort of bloke that lifts weights but you have to start somewhere!

Until next time!


Insanity: Is It For You?

After proving such a hit throughout the USA, Insanity classes are now being rolled out across Britain, paving a new way in how we approach fitness and exercise.

For those of you who don’t know, Insanity workouts are total-body conditioning programmes, with particular focus on maximum interval training, using a combination of aerobic (with oxygen) and anaerobic (without oxygen) exercises.

While traditional High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) sessions involve very short bursts of maximum intensity efforts with significant periods of rest in between, Insanity does things the other way around, combining far lengthier periods of high intensity efforts with far shorter cool downs.

Insanity workouts are designed to push the body to the edge of their capability via explosive, dynamic exercises.

It is claimed that Insanity workout sessions, if practiced weekly will improve fitness, health and strength within 60 days (a typical Insanity programme). Over the course of two months you will undergo a variety of 45-minute sessions, which incorporate aerobic type exercises such as jumps, running and hopping and high-end explosive routines such as power kicks, squats and suicide jumps, which will push your body to exhaustion. Each session is structured and progressive as you make your way through each week, building fitness as a whole.

Things you need to know about Insanity

- Get used to the pain

It’s tough: The clue is in the name! This workout is designed to hurt. Prepare yourself and understand that these sessions will push your body to the max. Once you get in the right mindset, you will appreciate each session, understand what is happening to your body and be more likely not to give up. Remember, pain is weakness leaving your body.

- It’s all about weight loss

While Insanity may help build some muscle, it’s designed to lose weight and build fitness. It will help shape and tone muscles giving that athletic look, but don’t go into this workout with the aim of building biceps like Arnold Schwarzenegger.  That’s not what it’s designed for.

- Home or Away

Insanity can be done at home with a specific workout DVD. However, DVDs are very easy to pause or turn off altogether. Not that we’re saying you will, but when your lungs start to ache and your heart thumps louder than a Phil Collins drum solo, you may start flirting with the idea of calling it a day. Thankfully there are instructor led sessions you can go to, where they will make sure that giving up is not an option. Call your local gym for more information on Insanity workout classes.

- It’s not for everyone

Not everyone can do it! This is rather important. The Insanity workout is one of the hardest exercise routines out there.  It not only requires willpower, but strength, flexibility and a base of fitness too. It is advised that before attempting the Insanity workout, you must be able to complete 10 push-ups and crunches as well as being able to comfortably run a mile. If you can’t, then work on that before stepping up to the programme.

- Eat right

Insanity won’t work unless you eat correctly. It’s common sense really, and can be applied to the majority of exercise classes. But if you don’t eat the right foods at the right time, you won’t give your body a chance to rebuild and progress. There is a detailed Insanity Diet Programme to follow. In short, it’s all about eating regularly throughout the day, adhering to the protein, carbohydrates and fat ratios. To put it simply, each day’s diet should consist of 40 per cent protein (for muscle repair), 40 per cent carbohydrates (for energy) and 20 per cent healthy fats. Oh and before you ask, junk food is out of the question.

- Take care

All sessions are designed to improve the body. At times, single muscle groups will be pushed, but on occasion, the whole body and therefore entire muscle groups will be working to their full capabilities. While these exercises will improve your fitness, and test you mentally and physically, they aren’t designed to break you. However, in some cases injuries may occur. It’s hardly surprising as a fair amount of force is placed through your joints and muscles. If you aren’t eating the right foods, this could also increase the risk of injuries. Our insurance policy covers individuals wishing to take part in Insanity workouts, covering you for personal accident and public liability.

Why not give Insanity teaching a go?

If you’re already a fitness or dance instructor, why not have a go at teaching Insanity workouts? Leading Insanity workout sessions is great fun and certainly different to other fitness classes. It will also present unique challenges and obstacles to overcome, pushing your skills to the limit. Unlike other fitness classes, as an Insanity workout instructor, you will be the centre of attention, demonstrating routines, working with the students and most importantly motivating them when the going gets tough.

In order to become an Insanity workout instructor, you will need to get certified. Courses last a day and will walk you through all the pre-designed workouts, present options for modifications to suit the ability of your students as well as advice on how to create your own sessions.

It’s also important to be fully covered should an incident occur in your class. Our insurance policy insures you for an accident that happens to you or anyone in your class. To be entitled to insurance you need to have attended an Insanity training course or be registered by The Register of Exercise Professionals (REPS) to Level 2 standard.

For more information on becoming an Insanity workout instructor visit


Cheerleading – is it for you?

If your current workout routine is leaving you feeling unmotivated it may be time to try a new activity to put the excitement back into getting fit.

The solution for this common dilemma may be found in an energetic and sociable sport which has y become popular in the UK. Give me a ‘C’, give me a ‘H’, give me a ‘E’, give me a ‘E’, give me a ‘R’!

Continue reading


The Need For Grassroots Football Coaches

Becoming a football coach has never been easier. The Football Association provide courses each year to help develop new coaches and have recently launched their Licensed Coaches’ Club, which provides ongoing training and development for coaches, to keep their qualifications up to date. We are also starting to see the emergence of football coaching companies, as well as professional football clubs reaching out to local schools to help develop the next generation of footballers.

Continue reading


English Commonwealth Games Finalist, Martyn Bernard tells us – “Glasgow put on a great show and the support from the crowds was fantastic!”

How did you find the Games?

This has been my third Commonwealth Games and it has been a fantastic experience from start to finish.

Glasgow put on a great show and the support from the crowds was fantastic.

Continue reading

The Illustrated History of the Lions Tour: Infographic

Although many will have been hoping for a solid display in the Lions’ final test, not even the most optimistic supporters would have expected them to turn over Australia in such spectacular fashion.

In beating the Wallabies 41 – 16 on Saturday, the British and Irish Lions ended a 16 year wait for a series win. Thanks to three tries in 12 blistering second half minutes, the points tally is now a Lions record – and helped them tie up the series 2 – 1.

Continue reading

Top five healthy protein-filled recipes









When you’re looking to bulk up in the gym, or simply keep up a healthy diet, protein is essential as it supports muscle growth and repair. Sports nutrition drinks, in particular protein shakes, have become incredibly popular in recent years, with around £260m spent on them last year. But while there is no denying the convenience of a shake, it’s quite possible to get a protein hit through your diet alone. Here are five recipes you might want to try if you’re looking to get a delicious yet healthy protein hit:

Continue reading

Eat, drink and be merry – the importance of a good diet









Clean living

The idea that we should be cutting out, or at the very least cutting down, on foods like pizza and chips and similar fatty bites is certainly not new. A worrying statistic is that most people living in England weigh more than is healthy – a shocking 30 per cent of children aged between two and 15 years old and 61.3 per cent of adults are either overweight or obese, according to the latest government figures.

Continue reading