“the class.” motto is finding peace through strength.
If I had to describe it in one word, it would be cathartic. First things first, I’ve got to come clean: I was skeptical about the class before I tried it. I love a good physical release, but attention to form, mind body connection, individual attention and a killer playlist are so super important to me. I was equal parts intrigued and stuck in a fitness rut it was time to give it a try. Side note, if you’ve ever seen the class. regulars, hello, I’ll have whatever founder Taryn Toomey is having, and dishing out, please and thank you. The regulars are toned, bright eyed, bushy tailed and have an aura that’s magnetic. All of them! I wasn’t sure what to expect (and at the time, there weren’t any videos online that showcase it); what took me by surprise were the feelings of immediate transformation after class and the meta-physical challenge it presented.
Using body weight only, the class. uses the body as an access point to move and confront stuck, stagnant and toxic energies. Old emotions. Unfinished conversations. Regret, negative self talk, the bad stuff that, when left untended, can take over your mind like a wall of ivy taking over a building: slowly, but surely, it’ll be covered before you know it.
Taryn Toomey is the founder of the class., and Natalie Kuhn and Jaycee Gossett are the first two teachers to come under her wing in New York. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Natalie in class and at the Uplift Project urban retreat, and have to say, she’s pure magic. There are a few reasons I wanted Natalie to be our guest. First, you can read and watch interviews with Taryn literally everywhere (The Coveteur, Man Repeller, The Chalkboard Magazine…. list goes on). She’s really blowing up, in the best way! Natalie is her first in command, and is heading out to LA to open up the class., west coast edition. March 5, 2016. West coasters, run — don’t walk. What I love about her teaching style is that she’s fierce but heartfelt, and understands the fine line between self compassion and growth. I was excited to get her perspective on how the class transformed her life.
the class. bridges the mind body gap in a way many classes won’t. SoulCycle is probably the closest you’ll get to not only the mind body connection, but the present moment awareness of that connection when the going gets tough. The teachers gives cues strategically, when you’re about to give in, to remind you that 1. the mind is stronger than the body 2. get out of your own way and 3. change the story of what you’re telling yourself. The teacher’s cue comes at the same exact time your brain starts switching the story to provide excuses for
Among other things, Natalie and I discuss:
- What to expect when taking the class.: process, benefits and how it’s different from other fitness classes you’ll take
- Natalie’s personal transformation taking and teaching the class over the last two years
- How (and why) to access pain points through the physical body in order to expand mentally, spiritually and emotionally
- Our personal experience with death of a parent, loss, grief and growth
- The concept of “The Frontier,” what it means, how you get there and what it feels like to be there
- Rituals and practices important to Natalie
- The importance of building a supportive community
- The merits of having worked in the service industry, and having had jobs you don’t love
- the class. is opening up a location in LA on March 5!
Photos: Catalina Kulczar Photography (Natalie Kuhn); Jamie Baird (Taryn Toomey)
Thank you, Natalie, for sharing your story with us! Sending love and well wishes for your move next week! xox