Woohoo! By popular demand I’m launching an Easy Ballet Class in November.
Mondays 7:30-8:30pm, November 7 to December 19, 2016
DSN Drop-In Dance Centre, 236 Dundas Street, 2nd floor
Fall special: All 7 classes for $70, or Drop in $15
Come out and experience the joy of ballet! This easy class is open to beginners, boomers, and aspiring bun-heads of all kinds. Men and women are welcome, no previous experience required.
In this fun and flowing class we’ll focus on creative expression while moving with poise and grace. A gentle workout for both body and brain that will challenge your memory with patterns and simple choreography. Bizz will guide you through basic ballet technique and positions of the arms and legs. You’ll learn barre and centre work, as well as port de bras (arm movements) and traveling steps. There will be no jumping in this class and only minimal turns.
What to wear? Leggings or yoga pants that show your feet and ankles, with a fitted top or leotard. Ballet shoes are recommended but not required. Skirts may be worn as long as they don’t restrict movement.
Questions? Contact email@example.com
Whoa! It’s September already!
Come and get your ya-yas out with some yoga and pilates, some deep breaths, a few good swears and a lot of laughs! I’m look forward to welcoming some new faces into our zany fold this fall.
Basement Fusion classes will resume on Wednesdays from 6-7pm, and Saturdays from 11am-noon. Classes begin September 7 and run through December 10, and there will not be a class on Saturday Sept. 24th. Prices are as usual: $15 to drop in, 4 for $50, or 8 for $80.
For anyone interested in getting their groove on, I am also teaching Contemporary Dance on Thursdays 6:30-7:30pm at the DSN Drop-in Centre (236 Dundas St). This is a class for adults of all levels, and beginners are definitely welcome. Drop me a line if you have any questions, or get more details here.
WHY YOGA? I’ve been practicing yoga since before I was born. Apparently my mom thought the unitards were cool, and joined a class so she could wear the outfit.
She claims to have used her pregnant belly (aka, me!) as a bolster to lean on while practicing Upavistha Konasana (wide leg forward bend). Her impressive collection of yoga videos, plus her strong encouragement, inspired me to start my own practice as a teenager.
As an adult, I found out that the benefits went way beyond stretching. I use yoga breathing techniques to calm, energize or clarify my mind. As a dancer, I was always drawn to the more active, flowing styles of yoga, but I have learned there is equal value in stillness.
People sometimes ask what kind of yoga I teach, and that’s a tricky question. I’ve come to think of yoga not so much as a thing that I do, but as a way that I do things. That’s not to say I don’t practice classic poses – I do! Since they were designed to help a person practice the HOW of yoga, they are an easy way to get to my calm centre. And I apply the principles of yoga to all my movement practices. I breathe deeply, I aim to balance strength and softness, and I seek out moments of stillness even when I’m in motion.
My yoga teacher training, plus my long injury history, taught me how to modify and adapt poses so they would be do-able by any body. I love finding ways to make yoga work for everyone.
The first yoga video I ever owned was Sarah Ivanhoe’s Joy of Yoga, which you can try here on youtube.
WHY PILATES? I was introduced to pilates in high school by my mom’s workout video collection (you can try Jennifer Kries’ classic 1996 workout on youtube). I was originally drawn to its ballet aesthetic. I’d been taking ballet classes since the age of 6, so pointed toes and long lines were already very familiar. We always did sit-ups and crunches as a warm-up in dance class, so I knew strong abs were important.
The principles of precision and flow appealed to my dancer brain, and like yoga, pilates uses the breath to bring awareness to the body. Later on, when I discovered my naturally extreme flexibility actually made me more prone to injury, I used pilates to balance my bendiness with strength. But it wasn’t until I took my teacher training that I truly understood the importance of activating the deepest abdominals. It’s actually their job to keep the body in steady alignment, and now I’ve made it my mission to spread the word.
The first thing I teach to new students is how to engage their transverse abdominus, and it has a huge impact not only on how they move but how they understand their bodies. To try it yourself, check out my Pilates Quick Fix video.
Thirteen minutes of core & spine bliss. What are you waiting for? Put on your stretchy pants and roll out your mat!
Show your hands and feet some Thanksgiving gratitude for all their hard work.
I am super excited to be offering a contemporary dance class for the first time in many years. This week’s lesson will be all about Contract & Release (what some would call the foundation of modern dance). Come out and free your spine!
Thursdays 6-7pm, July 7, 14, 21 and August 4
DSN Drop-In Dance Centre, 236 Dundas Street, 2nd & 3rd floors
Beginners welcome! Questions? firstname.lastname@example.org
$15 Drop in rate, no pre-registration required.
The new Dance Social Network Drop-In Dance Centre has many amazing classes happening all summer, and if you purchase a pass it will get you into ALL of them! Passes are 4 classes for $50, or 8 classes for $80, and they expire the same month they are purchased. (That means that you can’t get all four of my classes for $50, but you can try something new in July if you buy a pass!) Drop ins are $15, and you don’t have to commit to registration for consecutive weeks.
Join Bizz for a four-week adventure through a range of contemporary dance styles. An unconventional mix of exercises drawn from modern, ballet, yoga, pilates and somatic practices will follow the traditional progression from floor to centre and on to traveling steps and choreography. You’ll challenge both your body and mind with fun improvisations and soulful combinations set to great music. This class is open to all levels.
Contemporary Dance for Adults
London’s Dance Social Network studios (O.N.E. Hip Hop)
236 Dundas St, 2nd floor
July 7, 14, 21 & August 4
$15 per class
This class will be part of the London Dance Social Network’s summer drop-in schedule. You can purchase a class pass to get access to many other classes each week, see DSN’s facebook page for more info.
Join Bizz on a four-week adventure through a range of contemporary dance styles. An unconventional mix of exercises drawn from modern, ballet, hip hop, yoga and pilates will follow the traditional progression from floor to centre and then on to traveling steps and choreography. You’ll challenge both your body and mind with fun improvisations and soulful combinations set to great music. This class is open to all levels, beginners are welcome. Questions? email@example.com.
Bizz’s Summer Class Schedule
This summer I’m offering a few classes in Yoga, Fusion AND Contemporary Dance!Drop ins are welcome, please see the schedule and fees below.Questions? firstname.lastname@example.orgYoga Pilates Fusion
July 13 & 20 and August 3 & 10
$15 per class | 4 for $50 | 8 for $80
(can be used for any Basement class)
Contemporary Dance for Adults
July 7, 14, 21 and August 4
O.N.E. Hip Hop studio, 236 Dundas St.
$15 per class*
*updated June 28
July 8, 15, 22 and August 5
Downtown Yoga, 236 Dundas St.
Drop ins $15
Yoga Pilates Fusion
July 9, 16, 23 and August 6
$15 per class | 4 for $50 | 8 for $80
(can be used for any Basement class)
The next session of classes in my basement studio will begin next week and will run for 6 weeks this time around. For anyone with unused pre-paid classes, the extra weeks should give you a chance to use them up (I’ll send a separate email to let you know if you have any).
Here’s what you need to know:
-Wednesdays 6-7pm: May 18, 25, June 1, 8, 15, 22
-Saturdays 11am-12pm: May 21, 28, June 4, 11, 18, 25
-Prices: 4 classes for $50, 8 for $80 or $15 to drop in
Please note that you don’t have to wait for the beginning of a new session to join in the fun, just send me a message when you’re ready and you can get started!
Feel free to pass this email along to anyone else you think might be interested.
Finally, a heads up that there will be NO CLASSES between June 27th and July July 10th. I will be preparing for and recovering from this year’s FLUX Dance Festival www.fluxdance.ca.
See you soon!
PS: Do you know that Etta James song “In the Basement”?
Bring your sass to class!
We’ve been having all kinds of fun in the basement studio! The classes are a gentle-yet-challenging combination of yoga & pilates. All levels and experience are welcome, and I can always offer modifications if you are healing from an injury or something just doesn’t work for your body. Singing along to the soundtrack and swearing are encouraged (it’s good for morale!)
Join me for another 4 week session in April-May:
Wednesday Fusion 6-7pm will run from April 20 to May 11.
Saturday Fusion 11am-12pm will run from April 23 to May 14.
Fees Four classes for $50, or eight for just $80! Once a class is running, you may drop in for $15. More details on the Class Schedule page.
Classes require at least two students to run. Any cancellations will be posted by April 18th.
Growing up, Saturdays were all about dance class. No matter what my social plans for the day were, ballet had to happen first.As I got older, Saturday became a day for teaching little ones to dance. Later it became a day for teaching yoga to grown-ups.
I’ve been off on Saturdays for the past few months, but it still feels like cheating when I have all morning to drink tea. When I drink enough tea, sometimes I even break a sweat! But a yoga-pilates fusion class is a far better way to warm up for the weekend – and then lunch tastes extra-delicious 🙂
Join me tomorrow for the first of four Saturday Fusion classes from 11am-noon. $15 to drop in or all four for $50. More details on the Class Schedule page. Email email@example.com to register.
Bring on Spring!
Ok ok, we’re not quite there yet, but the end of winter is definitely in sight. While you wait for warmer days and more sunshine, build some heat in your body by joining a class in my home studio!
Wednesday Fusion 6-7pm is in need of a new student or two. The next four-week session will run from March 23 to April 13.
Saturday Fusion 11am-12pm will be added to the roster very soon. Join me for four weeks from March 19 to April 9.
Fees Four classes for $50, or eight for just $80!
Classes require at least two students to run. Any cancellations will be posted by March 20th.
Join me for a Wednesday evening class, running Feb 10 to March 2 at 6pm. It will be a combo of pilates and yoga, suitable for all levels. $50 for 4 weeks or $15 to drop in. Message me if you’re interested!
Get stronger and calmer in 2016 (and beyond) with classes at my home studio!
The winter session will run from January 4 to February 28. Classes will run if three students pre-resigter. Drops ins are possible if there are enough people pre-registered.
FUSION (Yoga + Pilates) Wednesdays 6-7pm cancelled: low enrollment
PILADIES NIGHT (Early Birds) Thursdays 6-7pm
PILADIES NIGHT (Night Owls) Thursdays 8:30-9:30pm cancelled
Register by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are interested in a class that has been cancelled due to low enrollment, email me! There may be another student out there just hoping to get it running and you can help 🙂
8 classes for $100 or 4 classes for $50 (that’s just $12.50/class!).
My home studio is located near Hamilton and Adelaide in London, ON.
The fine print
Missed classes can be made up at another time during the 8 week session, or can be shared with a friend. Payments can be made by e-transfer, cash or cheque.
Congratulations to COLLEEN WATSON, winner of a free lesson in her choice of yoga, pilates, dance, or fusion. She gets to bring up to four friends to share in the fun – I can’t wait!
Contest continues until Dec 27th! Like & Share to win!
Like & share or Favourite & retweet and I’ll put your name in a draw to win a free lesson at my home studio. The winner gets to choose the style (yoga, pilates, dance, fusion) and bring up to four friends to share in the fun! Look for the contest image on Twitter @bizzvarty and Facebook/yogabizz
You can enter once a day on as many days as you like. Contest ends at midnight December 27, 2015.
For sale details visit the Fees & Registration page.
WHY FUSION? All forms of movement are connected. What’s called temple pose in yoga is also known as a grand plié in second in ballet. What pilates instructors call spine flexion and extension is the same movement yogis call cat/cow. Mixing all the movement styles I have learned into my classes is only natural, because it’s what I do in my personal practice.
A little of this and a little of that is one way to find balance in my body, and each movement discipline has important lessons to teach. Yoga’s steady breathing, pilates’ focus and flow, and dance’s opportunities for expressing emotion all blend beautifully together.
The word fusion allows me to mix and match the elements that work best for my students, and challenges me to find new ways to move. Sometimes I add a little tai chi, or a strength training exercise. Sometimes I invent something new while experimenting between styles.
Fusion is my way of celebrating the infinite possibilities contained within our human bodies. Try it for yourself with one of my Fusion Quickie videos.
WHY DANCE? Helping us get around in space is one of the primary functions of our brains. To move is to live, and to move rhythmically is very human.
Our brains love patterns, and even the simplicity of walking left foot, right foot, left, right, brings us joy. It is incredibly hard for me to imagine not dancing, especially after 25 years of training.
Even when injuries prevented me from participating in the advanced classical forms I was used to, I still found ways to move to music. I swayed in my seat, I danced with my arms, I let emotions move through my body and direct it in space – even if I had to move very, very slowly while I was healing.
Expressing yourself through movement doesn’t require years of training, just the willing suspension of self-consciousness. Although I’ve always enjoyed complex movements, anyone can enjoy letting the music guide them into a groove.
I often teach simple movements from my dance training in yoga or pilates classes because they feel really good no matter what your level of experience. Rolldowns are one of my favourites, and you can learn about in this video.