1) Tell us a little about yourself.
A fun fact about me is that there are eight kids in my family! Being from a big family, I'm pretty adaptable and enjoy meeting people where they are at, whether in class or in everyday life.
2) What do you enjoy most about teaching?
I know how exciting it is to walk away from a class feeling like I've accomplished something and have taken one more step to a healthy lifestyle. As a teacher, I enjoy the honor of creating a safe, fun, and effective environment for clients to experience the same thing.
3) What are you most looking forward to with joining the DS Team in 2020?
When I started training as an instructor, I anticipated learning a unique and effective method--The Dancers Shape Method! I couldn't have anticipated that on top of learning an excellent method, I would be so inspired by the staff and the clients.
As I have gotten to know my fellow instructors, I am honored to work in an...more
Dancers Shape's Client Margaret
Six years ago this month I took my first Dancers Shape Graceful class, and it changed my life. I know it sounds dramatic, but that first class was my first real workout after the birth of my son. I was out of shape, tired, and less connected with myself and my body than I had ever been. After 60 minutes with Emily, in a class I almost couldn’t complete, I felt I had found a place where I could regain my strength. And I did.
The accountability and community at the studio has helped me get into the best shape of my life. I feel better now than I did in my twenties when I was running marathons. I trust Jen and the whole DS team, and know when I come in, no matter which class I’m taking, I am going to get a great workout. This trust is why I joined Megan Adams Brown and a group of DS ladies last fall to curb my sugar addiction!
I found Megan’s program to be true to the DS mission; challenging, but approachable. The accountability the group provided each other was great. We all saw amazing results and supported each other during our 21 day journey. This is why...more
You spoke and we listened! Starting January 6th, Dancers Shape will launch its 2020 schedule that has new Body By DS Classes, Groove & Glutes, and morning yoga times!
Here is what’s happening:
Join us in 2020 for our newest "Body by DS" creation! Experience a slow burn that will have you burning calories for hours after you are done. This 45 minute class will move between a variety of therabands and body work to chisel your entire body - just in time for Spring Break. Catch this class Monday nights at 5:45 pm.
A 45 minute condensed version of our original full body, power-packed Pilates fusion mat class. Work on the mat with our Pilates small props to build strength and stabilize between the pelvic and shoulder girdle - resulting in a strong and flexible...more
Lisa Kobdish was the second instructor that owner Jennifer McCamish hired at Dancers Shape after opening in 2010. Lisa has worked on and off with the studio over the past 9 years while pursuing her professional dance career.
1) Lisa, tell us what you have been working on outside the studio.
Outside the studio I dance with Kathy Dunn Hamrick Dance Co, a professional modern dance company who presents concert dance work each season, and am an administrative organizer for Austin Dance Festival. I am also a company member with Blue Lapis Light and find myself dancing off the sides of buildings more frequently. I'm also an avid city cyclist and carry myself to and from work with my legs mostly :)
Megan Adams Brown
So You’re Hooked on Sugar? Here’s Exactly What To Do To Get Off It.
For more help than we can give you in a blog post, we’ve got awesome news… Dancers Shape is hosting a Sugar Detox! Nutrition Coach Megan Adams Brown is leading us to sugar freedom in 21 days. The DS Sugar Detox kicks off with our in-studio workshop on September 14. To join, email us in the studio or stop by the front desk to sign up.
It happens to the best of us. One thing leads to another and before you know it you’re hooked. I’m talking about when you have too much sugar and all of the sudden it’s back in your diet and you can’t seem to get rid of it.
This can be really frustrating when you’re trying to stick to a healthier routine. Maybe you went all week eating lots of greens, salads, smoothies… you know, healthy stuff.
Then a holiday, long weekend, or just a regular old weekend comes around, you have a little too much wine, bread, dessert (basically too much sugar)… all of it. And it’s all over.
Now all the delicious tempting things won’t stop staring...more
Dancers Shape’s Certified Nutritional Health Coach Megan Adams Brown will be sharing her “Megan-Approved Recipes” with us here on the blog and offering personal and group nutrition programs through the studio. Learn more about Megan and how you can get a Nutrition Makeover here.
This summer salad and simple salmon is the perfect easy summer dinner on those nights when it’s too hot to cook. And the best part is you can use the same basic recipe and change it up with different ingredients and flavors so even though it’s basically the same meal, it tastes totally different.
I like to think of this, and most of my recipes really, as more of a template than a recipe. You can change it up and turn it into different meals, and essentially it’s the same recipe, just with a few tweaks.
Give it a try using the recipe below as a base and add things (any of the ingredients listed below are fair game), or sub this or that using your own favorite...more
In each workshop, Rachael will take inspiration from the chosen artist's music video and break down the choreography. Expect the same cardio burn as you get in Groove & Glutes, while mastering a full dance. No dance experience required!
Come join us and spice up your fitness routine with these fun cardio dance workshops!
Each workshop costs $30/each OR buy all 4 at a discounted price of $100 ($25/each). Auto-debit clients receive a 10% discount.
Once you have purchased your desired workshop, please reserve your spot...more
Here at Dancers Shape, we know exercising during pregnancy is greatly beneficial for low risk mothers. In fact, just recently I was chatting with our on staff physical therapist, Dr. Toussaint Biondi, and she shared this excellent blog that I thought our new mom’s and mom’s to be would really appreciate - Three Reasons You Should Rehab Like An Athlete After Having a Baby.
Dancers Shape has always specialized in Pre and Post Natal fitness where clients’ can grab our pre/post natal booklet and follow along in a regular class. However, while this booklet has invaluable information which is reviewed in a prenatal private, I see that the information needs to be repeated multiple times before clients truly settle into their correct breathing patterns...more
Who is joining me for the Dancers Shape “Shape it up for Summer” 30 day Nutrition & Fitness Program???
After a very decadent Easter weekend chock full of cocktails, sugar, and salty treats, I can’t believe how quickly my beach vacation has snuck up on me at the end of May. Not only am I bloated around my midsection, but I am also having flare ups with my eczema and stomach woes. None of the above makes me pumped to bare my skin.
While I have a much easier time managing my fitness schedule (if I don’t move my body hurts and I feel like a million bucks after a DS class so the incentive is immediate), my struggles lie with my food choices and portion control. My favorite thing to do is grab dinner, drinks, dessert and spend time with friends and family. I mentioned this before in my Lift & Tone blog, but it warrants a second note - things feel and look different at 45 so I know I have to adjust my habits. I have had to modify the intensity of my workouts to protect my body which means I have to upgrade my food choices to stave off extra pounds and to calm my irritated skin and digestive system....more
What drew you to nutrition and health coaching? How did you make your way to DS?
As long as I can remember I’ve always been interested in nutrition and food. In college I even had a hard time deciding which route to go and ultimately I chose writing over science and math, which have never been my strong suits. Then after college, I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease and it drew me back to nutrition with a totally different perspective.
That’s when I started learning about the body’s ability to heal and I was fascinated and also sorta blown away at how I’d never heard food talked about this way. It wasn’t long after that I was on a flight to New York to visit a friend and I sat next to a girl reading a nutrition text book. I asked about it and she told me about the school that 6 months later I went on to attend.
I made my way to Dancers Shape when I was looking for a workout that would help me rehabilitate and strengthen my shoulder, which I’ve had trouble with ever since having my twin daughters in 2015. The classes at Dancers Shape have...more
Introducing our Yoga Workshop Series!
Through the course of a single Vinyasa Yoga class, we put our bodies into positions and fluidly flow through the shapes. The teacher does their best to cue and assist you into your best form of each pose, but occasionally, subtle key actions can be missed. We also get questions from students about how they can achieve the bigger poses. And while we can answer this after class, it often takes more guidance, explanation, and experience in your own body to discover your potential in “big” poses. This is the inspiration for this workshop series.
In each session, we will take familiar poses and learn new ways to approach and even advance them. We will work with props and dig deep into the subtle actions of the body, some of which your body may be familiar with from barre & pilates! Each session will build on top of what we learn in the previous sessions, but will be beneficial on their own. These sessions will be accessible for all levels, though it will be helpful if you have...more
Dancers Shape’s Open House is Saturday, March 30th from 8 am - 2 pm. Our third featured vendor is Letty Woman Medical Aesthetics. Letty Woman is offering a Dermasweep as one of our prizes throughout the day.
Q - What is your most popular service you offer and why?
A - Although my true love is skin remodeling treatments such as microneedling and microdermabrasions, lip and cheek filler appointments are my most popular service. I would say it’s most popular because of my less is more approach to cosmetic corrections and enhancements.more
Dancers Shape’s Open House is Saturday, March 30th from 8 am - 2 pm. Our second featured vendor is the mouth watering Peached Tortilla. Peached Tortilla is located within walking distance to the Dancers Shape studio and will be providing small bites for our Open House!
Q: What is your most popular item on the menu and why?
A: The most popular item on our menu is definitely the Taco Trio. The trio consists of our three OG tacos, Bahn Mi, BBQ Brisket and Crunchy Fish. We started out as a food truck back in 2010 and with Austin's love for tacos these three have stuck with us as our most popular item since.
Q: What is your favorite thing about doing business in this neighborhood?
A: As a business, being able to participate as a face in neighborhood events like such is not only great for our brand but building these relationships is truly heartwarming. Seeing familiar faces whether it's seeing our neighborhood regulars walking their dogs down the street or coming in...more
Dancers Shape’s Open House is Saturday March 30th from 8 am - 2 pm. Over the next three weeks we will be highlight one of our local neighbors who is partnering with us for complimentary services or treats. Tune in to our blog weekly to see what makes them special!
Up first, Restoring Harmony Massage who will be providing chair massages from 10 am - 12 noon the day of our event!
Q: What is your favorite service you offer and why?
A: I would have to say my deep tissue massage is what I specialize in, so I tend to favor it more. I love this service because I understand what it means to have chronic pain or just have those knots that are continuously nagging at you, and I find with my deep tissue work I am able to work and provide some relief of those pesky knots while also providing some much needed relaxation for my clients.more
In honor of everyone’s hard work during the 2019 Reset & Rebalance (R&R) Challenge, we wanted to share and highlight a few of our client’s results. See how these women (at all different ages and stages of life) added in strength, cardio, and mindfulness and felt and saw the changes in their mind and body!
Congratulations! You made it to week 4 of the R&R Challenge. I hope each of you are feeling stronger and more balanced each day. Our last step in this challenge is to arm you with the tools necessary to stay committed to your re-balanced life. Let’s get started!
1) Aim to attend 3 - 4 classes per week. If you get more in awesome! If you get less, don’t sweat it. You have built up a solid base that will allow you the flexibility to miss more some weeks and less on other weeks depending on your schedule.
2) Try to keep the variety with strength, cardio, and mindfulness to mix things up so your body and mind do not plateau. This will also help prevent injuries by avoiding overuse of the same muscles and movements. Each week choose 1 - 2 classes from the 3 categories below. If you can get more than 1 in each category that is a bonus! But again, don’t sweat it if you do 3 of the same types of exercise for the entire week without mixing it up - the goal is simply to stay...more
“Practice isn’t the thing you do once you’re good. It’s the thing you do that makes you good.” - Malcom Gladwell
You have made it to the last week of this challenge! Give yourself a big pat on the back for this accomplishment!
Throughout this month, we have introduced small yet effective things to add to your daily lives to help you live mindfully and healthily. Sit and reflect on how your body and mind has changed over the last few weeks. And I totally suggest writing it down so that you can see and appreciate the effects of these changes! This week, I want you to continue integrating mindfulness into your daily life with your breathing practice, your conscious writing, and your meditation.
Now I want you to think beyond this 4 week challenge. Grab your handy notebook again :) and write down what you want your life to look like 1 month from now. Write down goals, small or big. Write about your daily routine. Even write about your ideal weekly routine. Then do the same for 6 months from...more
Megan Adams Brown
You’ve made it to week four - Congratulations are in order. Way to go!!!
That means you’ve made it over the hump and the new practices you’ve been implementing through the #RRChallenge2019 are hopefully now feeling more like regular habits.
Way to stick with it. And even if you don’t feel like you’ve been sticking with it as much as you like, just the fact that you’re here reading this post means you’re in this thing. You’re doing it, whether you like it or not. ;)
So you’ve made it four weeks (whatever that looks like for you), you’ve got yourself up and running with some new healthy livin’ momentum, now how do we keep those wheels turning so you can keep going and going with it? You can do anything for a few weeks, it’s making it last where it gets tricky.
Today I want to share with you three tips for long-term success. Each of these are key pieces in turning what you’ve started here in the #RRChallenge2019 into a lasting healthy lifestyle.more
In this third week of the R&R Challenge we are focusing our efforts across the board on listening to our bodies. Our minds love to be in charge, but the body speaks to us all the time when it comes to fitness, nutrition, and mindfulness. Allow yourself to hear it and learn from it.
Take it from me (an ex-professional dancer) where pain was part of the game. It took several injuries for me to realize how to listen to my body and work with its specific needs:
Stick with the types of exercise I enjoyed and felt best in my body.
It’s ok to modify, I don’t have to push 110% ALL of the time.
Do not work through pain.
Taking a day off or participating in a lower level class is not shameful. In fact, these realizations helped me stay at the top of my game.
Whether you are a fitness buff or a fitness newbie, it is completely normal for your body to fluctuate in how it feels during your workout from day to day. What felt easy one day may feel...more
“Meditation practice isn’t about trying to throw ourselves away and become something better, it’s about befriending who we are.” – Ani Pema Chodron
Take a moment to sit and reflect...how did things go this week? Were you able to get your notebook out every day? Did you sit and observe your breath? How many times a day did you practice your breath? Did it feel overwhelming? Did being overwhelmed prevent you from doing any of it?
I want you to keep at it. Find the time of day that is best for you. Maybe it’s after dropping the kids at school, or your lunch hour, or after dinner. Spending 5-10 minutes each day practicing mindfulness is an investment in you. Remember, you are taking steps to uncover insights into your internal world. The more you discover, the more tools you are able to develop for yourself. These tools will be there to support the joy in your life.
This week we have small additions to keep you on this path:more
Megan Adams Brown
Our bodies are constantly talking to us. Only problem is they’re speaking a different language. And whispering. And everything else out there is screaming for our attention (hello, low carb craze), drowning out that small, still voice, telling you something else. That poor little whisper doesn’t stand a chance.
This is why “listening to your body” is so much easier said than done.
Tuning into your own body is more than skill. I call it a sense, like seeing or smelling, because it’s like a survival tool for your body.
It takes some practice to hone and strengthen it. As you do though, that small, still voice gets louder and stronger. Think of it like a muscle you haven’t worked out in awhile, or that you didn’t even know was there until after a particularly challenging workout.
Identifying and maintaining this muscle is how you truly take charge of your health.
There’s not a doctor, or a test that compares to the power of...more
In week 2 of R&R, we are discussing the importance of mixing it up. Lucky for you, one of Dancers Shape's basic foundations is variety. Yahoo! DS works hard at creating fresh, new, safe programming so that your body and mind don’t plateau. We believe in the importance of a well balanced exercise routine that addresses strength and cardio needs.
1) Step out of your comfort zone and try a new class.
It is completely normal to feel intimidated when trying something new. For example, I don’t typically enjoy cardio exercise (unless it is dance). Running hurts my hips/back and cardio machines at the gym are mind numbing for me. So when I was invited to a spin class I was terrified but I wanted to see what all the rage was about. I told myself, “do what you can and have an open mind - it is just a bicycle.” Within the first minute of class I thought I might have to excuse myself because my quads were burning so bad. But then I remembered, it’s just a bike, not a competition. Sit down, slow down, and experience the class. Part of the fear factor in...more
“Mindfulness is the aware, balanced acceptance of the present experience. It isn’t more complicated than that. It is opening to or receiving the present moment, pleasant or unpleasant, just as it is, without either clinging to it or rejecting it.” - Sylvia Boorstein
By engaging in daily mindfulness practices, we gradually develop tools that can serve us throughout our lives. For just a moment, bring to mind a difficult situation (no matter how small or big) in your life that you feel you didn’t handle with the best judgement or grace. Over time, our practice gives us tools in our tool belt to use when we inevitably encounter these situations again. Small, steady steps of mindfulness help us calibrate our internal (and external) reactions to stressors, as well as help us engage with the people and the world around us. And when we are truly engaged, we can begin to relax and enjoy our lives.
Your addition for mindfulness last week was to carry an object with you that invokes joy and to practice watching your breath 3-5...more
Megan Adams Brown
If I had to choose one area that’s the most important thing you can do for your health and wellbeing, it’d be learning to cook and meal prep.
I know it may not sound like much fun. Maybe you’re thinking “errr, I don’t like to cook.”…
But here’s the thing, this is so much more than something you like to do or not (as if it were optional), an interest or a hobby. Cooking is a survival skill. It’s that important and essential.
Over the years as I’ve coached so many different people who’ve wanted to take charge of their health for one reason or another, no matter their “what” or “why,” with every single one we end up in the kitchen learning these basic skills.
It’s why now I always say - the path to health is through the kitchen. There’s no way around it.
And it’s why I’ve created an entire stand alone digital program to teach people the easiest, most efficient way to cook possible. It’s called...more
If you have taken my class in the past then you have heard me say many times, “I am looking for the quality of your movement, not how big your range of movement is...”
I am referencing the basic principles of Pilates - master perfect form before adding in speed and/or coordination for the challenge. Everybody has specific body mechanics unique to them, so we must learn to embrace what our personal range looks like, and more importantly, what it should feel like in your body. By mastering the subtle sensation and engagement of the deepest layers of your trunk you will build a solid base to improve your range of motion and get stronger quickly.
Along with getting your 20 DS classes in, I want to challenge you to focus on how to engage your pelvic floor and transverse abdominals before adding advanced options in.
1) How to engage your pelvic floor before you begin any movement.
The pelvic floor is a layer of muscles that lies between the sitz bones and the...more