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We remember our essence is wise, wild, and free.
Wise, wild and free also draw reference to the movement forms that we practice:
Wise: the wisdom of yoga
Wild: the creative expression in dance
Free: expanding our capacity to enjoy our bodies through feminine movement
In every Qoya class, you experience 13 core components expressing a unique theme for the day that supports the embodiment of your feminine essence.
You also engage in ritual, pilgrimage, and community connections to open your heart, mind, and spirit.
You slow down and feel. You sweat. You play and have fun!
Your perspective shifts from going through the motions to savoring life as sacred.
You find the answers you seek in your body, and as well as the support to follow them.
1. The teacher prepares for class with her own rituals to create sacred space.
2. The class theme is introduced, and everyone is invited to pull an oracle card for guidance for the day's class.
3. Breathing to integrate mind, body, and spirit into the present moment and intention setting to initiate a co-creative relationship with the divine.
4. Circle through each part of the body to release tension or rigidity, and begin to shift the focus from how it looks to how it feels.
5. Heart Opening to connect to the the rhythm of the music and the rhythm of your own heart, and begin the longest journey we ever take - six inches from the head to the heart.
6. Hip Opening through sensual movement to release shame and shyness and replace it with bold reveling in pleasure.
7. Sun Salutations/Dancing Warrior Sequence to access the gifts of yoga by experiencing movement as prayer and bringing our awareness of mind, body, spirit, and energetics into alignment.
8. Shadow Dance to honor the challenges in our lives and dance with them rather than pretending that they are not there.
9. Shaking each part of the body to intentionally release what no longer serves us and reclaim our vibrant nature and zing!
10. Choreographed Dance to create more mind/body connection and to have fun!
11. Free Dance to move into our full authentic creative expression and feel our spirit/soul embodied and dancing.
12. Community Connection to use language to anchor any healing or epiphanies and also be a witness to another woman as she shares.
13. Final strengthening, stretching and relaxation to integrate all the benefits of class.
In Qoya, we focus less on how it looks and more on how it feels.
There's no beginner, intermediate or advanced levels because there's just one level and that is when it feels good you're doing it right. Qoya encourages a shift from seeking external validation on how you move and the tendency of waiting for correction or praise to see if you are "doing it right" to a place where you reclaim the innate ability to move the way that you want to move and feel a sense of inner validation that the fact that it feels good in your body is enough.
More than feeling good, what if the movement you did felt true?
The intention of a Qoya class is to remember the physical sensation of truth in your body. Can you remember a time when you just knew something was true in your body? You knew it like you knew the sun would rise tomorrow. You could feel it in your bones. Once you feel that connection to yourself through your body, the invitation is to set that feeling as North on your compass. You practice this feeling, this sensation of authenticity and resonance, not just for an hour long experience in a Qoya class, but so that you can deeply trust yourself, and the feeling of truth in your body, as you navigate the journey that is your life.
The actual class is done while having an amazing time dancing, sweating, stretching, yoga-ing and connecting to other women with some good tunes to help guide the journey along. Every class is different, and done to a soundtrack that takes you from the joy of Bollywood to ragas from India to the magic of Mali. From the beats of the Lower East Side, up to the heights of Heaven and back down to the dance floor of Soul Train.
Dana is a very warm and radiant person and it is always a wonderful experience to work with her. The Qoya classes especially have a huge impact on me.
One of my greatest insights came through during the shadow dance. I have already spent a great amount of time trying to learn about my dark side, grief in particular, and figuring out on how to deal with those feelings. I knew in my head that I should acknowledge my grief; However, it wasn't until I was dancing with it, finally feeling it fully and accepting it, that I could fully understand and embrace it. This was a very liberating and joyful experience.
Qoya is like therapy for me. Whenever confusing thoughts and feelings arise in my body, Qoya helps me to feel them and find the knowledge within me on how to deal with them. I am so grateful for having met Dana and her bringing Qoya into my life!
Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!