Written by: 19B0120, Muhammad Riyanulaiman Effendy bin Mohd Yazid (Public Relations Officer, Executive of Media and Public Relation Officer)
Muhammad Efwad Rashyad Bin Samle, or Efi, as known by his peers, is one of nominees from Inspirasee of the Month for March 2022. Efi is currently a third-year student in UBD from the School of Business and Economics (SBE) majoring in Entrepreneurship. He is known for his enthusiasm and passion for spinning. He has notably instructed spinning classes for beginners for two years now and also helped relaunched UBD Spinning Club.
For those who are unfamiliar with spinning, it is essentially a fitness routine or cardio exercise characterised by its inclusion of stationary bicycles. Spinners would follow a choreographed exercise routine, similar to dancing. It would typically be done in large groups in a studio and is led by an instructor. Our inspirasee stated that he started being involved in the world of spinning at the age of 17 during his Sixth Form years in 2018. According to him, he often choreographed and instructed up to 4 spinning sessions per week. His sessions are mostly catered towards beginners, although he has also begun to teach advanced classes as of this year.
Efi elaborated that spinning is a good outlet to allow someone to stay fit, especially to those who are not keen with sports with routines or heavy training. In addition, it allows one to have fun and enjoy themselves with the music. Moreover, being a spinning instructor helps him to be more organised, disciplined and have better time management. He emphasised how spinning created him the opportunity to meet new people and also maintain good relations with individuals within the spinning community.
According to Efi, back then he was initially inspired by videos of people spinning and became really interested with the atmosphere and environment of the exercise. Although he initially did not know where to start, he took the initiative to join his friend and her mother, who brought him into one spinning session. He immediately fell in love with the exercise. Not long after, his friend stopped spinning. However, he continued by joining his friend’s mother who goes spinning regularly.
When asked what his greatest strength was, he stated that it was his non-stop dedication to spinning, eventually becoming friends with his instructors, and it did not take him long to be one of the instructor’s shadows. Often individuals who tried spinning would feel discouraged after a few sessions. However, Efi would continue to stay put and have strong commitment for the sport. He stated that he has the need to go spinning at least once a week. Otherwise, he would feel empty and unsatisfied. As of now, he finds that maintaining connections is his biggest strength in the spinning community.
He further reminisces how when the first wave of COVID-19 was over in 2020, there was a sudden increase of interest in fitness activities in Brunei. People were immediately into hiking, rollerblading, cycling, and of course, spinning. As the COVID-19 restrictions were lifted, some of his friends were interested to try spinning, but they felt anxious about the possibilities of getting judged by those who are more experienced. Efi then took the initiative to help his friends out and started his own private class personally instructed by himself. After five consecutive classes, the studio he attended noticed his talents and encouraged him to be a genuine spinning instructor. He stated how he was hesitant at first due to the lack of resources and connections. Nevertheless, his friends continued to support his passion for spinning, which eventually led him to where he is now.
As of 2022, Efi is currently instructing four spinning classes in Seria (REVO Studio), Tutong (Excelean Fitness), Jerudong (Spinbeat Studio) and also Berakas (Twist & Turn Fitness). He mainly focuses on instructing spinning classes for beginners. In the class, he would teach them basic spinning guidelines such as how to properly adjust their bicycles and basic body movements. He emphasised that spinners need to be very comfortable in their position so they can execute the movements properly and synchronise to the beat of the music. Typically, in beginners’ classes, it will be a slower pace compared to the quick-paced and more intense advanced or freestyle classes. Beginner classes usually only use one movement throughout one song in contrast to the advanced classes, which often use four or more movements per song. He also advises beginners to avoid the freestyle classes as they might be too hard for them.
According to Efi, in order to become an instructor, one needs to be a people person. He stated that he likes to help people and brings out the best in them. Through instructing spinning classes, he is able to guide people in their fitness journey, and that is a magical experience for him. In addition, he stated that instructing and doing spinning surprisingly burned more calories compared to running. Not only that, he finds the environment enjoyable and considers that his work is also a way for him to keep up with his healthy lifestyle.
One of the challenges he had faced when he just started instructing was that he had difficulty making an impact due to his lack of connections. He did not have any spinning instructor friends, and the community did not know him very well. In addition, he stated that coming up with diverse choreography for his clients can be very difficult. Moreover, he confessed that he is currently learning to market himself as a spinning instructor and often has to rely on the studios to help advertise his sessions via their respective social networking sites. Sometimes he feels concerned that his clients would judge him if he is not up to their standards when it comes to choreographing their class or if they find his class tedious.
Efi further elaborated regarding his support system throughout his journey. His brother was the one who initially started spinning with Efi back in 2017. He was always the one encouraging him to not give up and motivated him to further pursue his passion. In addition, his three best friends also played a role in his support system. They would be supportive and compliment Efi after every session. Their encouragement and compliments motivated him every time. Furthermore, he commended the fitness studios who gave the opportunity and encouragement for Efi to instruct spinning classes and were also motivating him to keep going.
In regards to his future and goals, Efi hopes to be in the same spectrum or level as the other senior spinning instructors who he looked up to. He aspires one day to become like them and be able to instruct up to 6 classes a week. There is a stigma that spinning is being seen as a feminine fitness activity; a view that Efi hopes to overcome. However, the reality in Brunei is that the ratio of spinning instructors is 1:4 between females and males respectively. Therefore, one cannot say that spinning only caters to the female demographics. Other than that, Efi wants to advocate spinning to more Bruneian youths, and to grow the spinning community as the activity can help individuals with many things like it has helped him before. He believes that spinning should be accepted as a fitness programme that anyone, regardless of age and gender, can join.
One thing he would like to convey to the readers is:
“Don’t compete with people who started earlier, because you know..
they started as rough as you are experiencing now when you started. So.. see it
step by step, okay? Have a small goal - one step at a time!”
To know more about Efi’s spinning endeavours or find out when his lessons are held, you can check his Instagram out at @lifeofefi