Three years ago, I walked into my first pilates class at MISFITSTUDIO. I won't lie, there was one very specific reason why I chose to try a class at MISFITS...the name.
I had done pilates classes and videos before, and always felt my body type was a little 'different' from everybody else in the room. I thought, if there was anyone fit to be a misfit, it was me. Amber, the creator of Toronto's most unique movement studio, taught the very first class I attended, and it was awesome: physically challenging, welcoming, mentally and emotionally enlightening. I left feeling (what I've decided to call) "Zenergetic." I'd heard others describe what happens at MISFITS at 'magic', and believe me, I recognized it when I felt it. Last year I took part in MISFITS Fusion Teacher Training, and over the several weeks of work, I came to appreciate that Amber is as kind and brilliant as she is creative, strong, and welcoming. She is a force to be reckoned with. There is no one I've met who is as great at creating a welcoming, nourishing, and encouraging physical and mental space as she is. When I need a little balance in my crazy schedule, I tap into many of the physical and mental skills that I've picked up from the classes and training I've taken at MISFITSTUDIO, so when I started this little self-care series, I knew exactly who I needed to contact! And boy was I excited when Amber agreed to answer some of my questions on self-care and her intentions behind the MISFIT method! Take a read below, and be sure to try out a class at one of the MISFITStudio locations soon! You will LOVE it!
What inspired you to create MISFITStudio?
To provide an atmosphere where people felt comfortable enough to dance//express/release in the magic of movement
Your classes are incredible; from personal experience, I know they nourish mind, body, and soul. When you walk into the studio to teach a class, what are your intentions/goals?
I feel the beauty of movement is a mystical thing
when breath and shape and form synchronize through the room
its as though magic fills the air
THAT can truly only occur when a deep trust is felt, (this may be unconscious for some)
i approach each class with a desire to soften any sharp edge, connect, and create a union
The "gospel" talk at the beginning of each class helps this, it acts as a leveler
cosmically, astrologically we are ALL going through the same sensations,
even if deeply buried
i open that to the room
a reminder we're all human
doin our best
What does self-care mean to you?
This to me rings similar to how i feel about my movement
its a lifestyle
a way of life
You've partnered with a number of local businesses to help your clients maintain a clean and healthy lifestyle! How do you see your classes, challenges, and partnerships fitting into a self-care routine?
"Movement each day is necessary"
Its the physical untangling allows for open mindedness and clarity to act a current to freely run through the day
Do you have a favourite class to take or teach, and why?
Ohhhhhh this is a difficult question to answer.
I chanel when i teach, so i get very tuned in when im teaching
Sometimes my slow, gooey, lengthening class feels just amazing!
and in the same breath, my super challenging, fast moving, sweat inducing Fusion class satisfies on a whole other level!!
And then my dance classss!! next next level
Do you have any other thoughts on the essentials of a solid self-care routine?
W A T E R
clean eating most of the time (dont get me wrong, i LOVE a good banquet burger, but eating green and clean FEELS SO GOOD)
meditation, or some type of mindful practice
massage (or some kind of physical release)
yummy skin oils
a deep oxygen fix (like visiting botanical gardens)
connection, lovers, friends, family, laughter, to be heard, to be seen
Are there any inspirational quotes or figures that have guided you in your journey to create the MISFIT method and your routine to take care of yourself in in such demanding position.
my fave of all time is
goddess Maya Angelou
"I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel."
Anything else you would like to add regarding self-care or about MISFITStudio?
I do think it's important to feed the
mind//body//soul with a variety of activity
My method is rooted in yoga
informed by pilates
and inspired by dance
Mindfulness and pranayama (breathwork) through yoga, deep anatomical connection, eccentric length and slow methodical work with pilates and pure, clear, wild freedom from dance
Each requires discipline, love and truth
Blending all three in many variations creates limitless possibility