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View Full Version : Do You Like to Do it with the Lights on or Off?



PaulD
01-06-2007, 03:17 AM
Like many others, I have found that (depending on the ride) it can help mental focus to dim the studio lights (at least some of the time). I'm not talking about riding in complete darkness!

However, even dim lights can be a problem for people using HR monitors. Some don't have a backlight and even those that do often stay on for only a few seconds. So, people messing about with HR monitors to try see it in the dark destroys the mental focus I am aiming for.

Any other views, experiences or advice to share on this one?

ACinNJ
01-06-2007, 05:41 AM
I teach in 4 different places. Lights on in 2 of them. Dimmers in 1. Lights off in another with a low bulb on. The Ballys I formerly taught in had black lights. If you're in a room with windows, it's kind of moot.

It's the facility that determines whether you can or can't, should or shouldn't.

I really don't have much of a personal choice other than I don't like a very bright room.

Escandalosa
01-06-2007, 10:26 AM
In all the clubs I teach at lights are off with either a blacklight or a very low light on somewhere in the room.

PaulD
01-06-2007, 11:20 AM
Hey thanks fo your views. Do your participnts have any problems seeing their HR monitors when the lights are down?

jsejt
01-06-2007, 11:24 AM
Can't we have a drink first? :D ;)

gigi
01-06-2007, 12:13 PM
Polar sells a handlebars for the watch part of the HR monitor. It sits at the perfect angle so you can see the display even in dim lights

danielle
01-06-2007, 02:09 PM
Hey all,

Think about it, do aerobics classes take place in the dark? Personal training sessions in the dark? As the coach/instructor/trainer, can you honestly be aware of each student at ALL times in a dimly lit room? It is a total liability if someone gets hurt in your class and the lights were dimmed or off. Save your bank account, house and car, and put the lights on!

Danielle

Cheeze
01-06-2007, 06:47 PM
I have a Spinner in my basement and at home I love to ride with the lights down, or to just the light of the TV. I'd confess to the candles but then AC (and others) would have a field day).

But since I'm in insurance and a large part of my job is risk management - I will never teach with the lights down or off.

Cheeze

PaulD
01-07-2007, 05:21 AM
The Johnny G Spinning Instructor Manual says (for visualisation): ".... a strong focus point somewhere in the room can be used (e.g. a candle).". Not sure how this woudl work with bright room lighting.....

ACinNJ
01-07-2007, 06:58 AM
I have a Spinner in my basement and at home I love to ride with the lights down, or to just the light of the TV. I'd confess to the candles but then AC (and others) would have a field day).

But since I'm in insurance and a large part of my job is risk management - I will never teach with the lights down or off.

Cheeze

Oh...PS...you must look postiviely ethereal with candles burning, tie-died shirt, bandana, and the Moody Blues pumping down there!! Tell me you're NOT watching Sportscenter in this mode?

Now on the serious side...if the facility does permit or encourage the instructor to dim the lights, please elaborate more on how personal liability differs any in a low lit room (obviously not a pitch black room) or a brightly lit room. The majority of issues usually come from equipment related accidents which have nothing to do with the instructor. And we should be setting people up with the lights on (common sense?) so that is a non-issue also.

If I was actually concerned about getting sued over the lights being dim, what's going to be your take on the ceiling fans? I turned on a fan, decapitated a rider and lost my home?

brothermanonline
01-07-2007, 10:16 PM
Hey all,

Think about it, do aerobics classes take place in the dark? Personal training sessions in the dark? As the coach/instructor/trainer, can you honestly be aware of each student at ALL times in a dimly lit room? It is a total liability if someone gets hurt in your class and the lights were dimmed or off. Save your bank account, house and car, and put the lights on!

Danielle


I agree. Dim lights can set an cool mood, but how can you tell if someone is suffering or having difficulty? I try to keep the lighting up, so I can at least see the faces of all my students.

spinmomma
01-08-2007, 07:46 AM
One gym -
no lights, just a black light. I can see the participants for the most part.

The other -
Lights get turned off, BUT there is a huge window. It does have an overhang so no direct sunlight. At night it has a light right outside the window, so all in all, it is really never "DARK" to be unsafe.

RaffCycles
01-08-2007, 09:05 AM
One of the studios I teach at has overhead windows, kind of like an atrium with a skylight. No need for lights, so the natural lighting works well. At the other studio, the students like the lights off, but I refuse to keep them too dark and dim them just enough to take the brightness off. I make sure I can see everyone and the color of their faces.

melanieann
01-08-2007, 11:10 AM
On. I'm a visual person.

Oh, wait...We're talking about Spinning?! :eek:

I like them off-we're in a studio with floor to ceiling windows that face the street so we either get plenty of street lights or sunlight. It's calming.

PaulD
01-09-2007, 06:58 AM
Wow this one is more contraversial than I expected. At least it reassures me that I was right to think there was a valid quetsion to be asked. Personally I prefer to have the lights up but then I have participants actually asking for them to be dimmed.

rick316
01-09-2007, 07:52 AM
Personally I prefer to have the lights up but then I have participants actually asking for them to be dimmed.

I think I posted this before but it's valid here.

I was covering a while back,at a club that I do not normally work at.two classes in a row something happened.

The first time,a rider pointed towards the ceiling repeatedly.I asked her what was wrong and she said the lights are on."Yes,I know". When I wouldn't turn them off,she walked over towards the switch and despite me saying to leave them,she turn the lights off.I walked over to put them back on(the music is playing at this point) she ran and jumped in front of me,laughing.I wasn't aware people had that behaviour in them.

The second week,I was wise to this but a man I didn't recognize called out to me that he wanted the lights off.I suggested to him to close his eyes and I got right on with the class.

Don't get me wrong,I can do 'dimmed' occasionally but not all the time(trapeze theory) but i don't do lights out,ever.

PaulD
01-09-2007, 08:25 AM
I think I posted this before but it's valid here.

I was covering a while back,at a club that I do not normally work at.two classes in a row something happened.

The first time,a rider pointed towards the ceiling repeatedly.I asked her what was wrong and she said the lights are on."Yes,I know". When I wouldn't turn them off,she walked over towards the switch and despite me saying to leave them,she turn the lights off.I walked over to put them back on(the music is playing at this point) she ran and jumped in front of me,laughing.I wasn't aware people had that behaviour in them.

The second week,I was wise to this but a man I didn't recognize called out to me that he wanted the lights off.I suggested to him to close his eyes and I got right on with the class.

Don't get me wrong,I can do 'dimmed' occasionally but not all the time(trapeze theory) but i don't do lights out,ever.

I would have been as surprised as you by this behavior. I have had people ask for lights dimmed and sometimes I agree for a few minutes if it fits the ride (never off - just dimmed) because for some it does assist with mential focus (less visual distractions) and not everyone is comfortable riding with eyes closed. My main reservation was about people trying to read HR monitors and dimmed lights therefore becoming a distration. I hadn't thought about all of the other points people have raised here.

I've never had anyone insist or get physical about it. If it happened I guess I'd explain why and insist.

rick316
01-09-2007, 08:32 AM
In a light-hearted way,to heck with the HR monitors,I can't see my stopwatch or playlist! I have a memory like a fishing net (couldn't spell sive!) and I have to know where I'm at or I'll stay in the saddle for ever and a day.

Escandalosa
01-09-2007, 11:15 AM
If I was in a class where the instructor refused to turn the lights low I would be very put off. I never even knew classes were ever held with the lights completely on.

In both certifications I've been through (Spinning and Schwinn) we were told to turn the lights low. Why is it the people who don't turn the lights low feel they know better?

melanieann
01-09-2007, 11:37 AM
As a student I would never attend a class that had blinding flourescent lights on with no dimmer or option to turn them off. I also wouldn't teach one. Most heart rate monitors do come with lights so you can read them and if you're having trouble reading your playlist, etc then there are some handy book lights out there that help. I've never taught a class where the room was so dark I couldn't see in front of my face BUT I don't wear glasses or contacts and I have good vision.

PaulD
01-09-2007, 11:41 AM
In a light-hearted way,to heck with the HR monitors,I can't see my stopwatch or playlist! I have a memory like a fishing net (couldn't spell sive!) and I have to know where I'm at or I'll stay in the saddle for ever and a day.
Point well made :D

rick316
01-09-2007, 12:02 PM
Why is it the people who don't turn the lights low feel they know better?

I can only speak for myself,I don't feel I know better but I'm in charge of the ride so I set the guidelines.If the lights being on is one of those guidelines,then so be it.I see it this way,would you consider doing a step class with the lights turned down?Safety first in my book.

Escandalosa
01-09-2007, 02:44 PM
I see it this way,would you consider doing a step class with the lights turned down?Safety first in my book.

How can you compare a step class to a Spin class? In a step class you're on and off a step continuously throughout the class. With no lights on you're right, it would be quite dangerous. But in a Spin class that's not the case. How is it unsafe to have the lights dimmed?

I don't think anyone here turns the lights completely off. No one is teaching a class where they can't see the students and their faces. So what's dangerous?

rick316
01-09-2007, 02:50 PM
. How is it unsafe to have the lights dimmed?



I agree,but this wasn't the question you asked.I think it was "Why is it the people who don't turn the lights low feel they know better?"

This is a completely different question.I think I understand what you are getting at but I was answering the first question.Dimmed can be ok,in the right circumstances(as I said before,the trapeze theory is in place here).

ACinNJ
01-09-2007, 05:35 PM
And here I thought that the people who actually run the gym determine things like temperature, lighting, sound, scheduling and attendance policies.

I must be the wimpiest instructor on the forum. I just conduct a class and let the people paying me take care of those things.

I need to ask for more authority and less pay.