Andrea is a certified Liquid Motion 1.0 & 2.0 instructor currently teaching at The Dollhouse Fitness in San Diego, California. She is a proud military spouse and mom to two rambunctious and sweet kids.
1. You’ve been certified in the Liquid Motion training program for almost a year now! Tell us how you got started with Liquid Motion.
I ran across Jeni’s videos on Instagram early in my pole journey and was like “I want to move like THAT!” There was nothing forced about her movement, and it just made sense to me – even if I had no idea what the moves were. I started taking Liquid Motion classes at my studio in Virginia at the time and loved the whole feeling of the class. After taking a few workshops from Jeni, I knew I had to get certified – even if I didn’t teach. I just wanted to know more. It took a while for the stars to align (pregnancy, moving across country, LIFE happening) but luckily I was able to get certified last year and felt it was the best thing I’ve done for my personal movement journey to date.
2. What is your teaching philosophy? Do you have a motto or mantra?
I definitely like to have a lot of fun in class, and I also I firmly believe in challenging my students. My students will tell you that I often remind them that if they understand and can do every move in a class, they’re in the wrong class. That is one of the things I love about Liquid Motion – there are ALWAYS new ways to challenge yourself even with moves you think you already know how to do. My other motto: When in doubt, split it out.
3. What has been your most rewarding teaching experience?
I recently had a student tell me that she loves my classes because I teach in a way that helps her understand the moves, so she can make them her own. She said now the moves are truly hers. What could be more rewarding as a teacher than your students taking what you’ve given them and making it uniquely theirs? It was a happy tear moment.
4. What has been your biggest struggle in your teaching journey?
My biggest struggle in my teaching journey has been learning to balance teaching with my personal practice. As a teacher I want to give my students everything to make them successful, but I have to leave room for my own practice if I want to continue to grow as a dancer and as a person. While I have grown through teaching in ways I probably wouldn’t have as a student, I absolutely need to take time to refill my cup as a student. It keeps me centered, happy, prevents overuse injury, and inspires me to keep creating and trying new things.
5. You also teach pole classes in addition to Liquid Motion. Do you find that the Liquid Motion methodology helps with other modalities, either as a student or as an instructor?
It absolutely does! The Fundamentals and Techniques are not limited to the floor. I have a healthy sense of self-preservation so as a student I need to know where all my body parts are and what they’re doing during a pole sequence! Understanding those techniques helps me break down pole combos so I understand what is happening and why instead of flinging myself up a pole and hoping for the best. I also find that the methodology helps me perfect my moves. For me it’s not enough to just do a move. I want to do a move, however simple and straightforward, really really well…and be able to add my own pieces of flare to it.
As a pole instructor, knowing the Liquid Motion methodology helps me explain to my students WHY we’re placing our hand/leg/elbow pit a certain way in a move. It helps my students to understand how to execute a move/combo safely, and helps them to pick up the class choreography quicker.
6. What are your goals in your own personal movement journey? Has Liquid Motion had any impact in the way you approach these goals?
My goal is to keep dancing for the rest of my life. I don’t want to wake up one day with an injury that sidelines me from pole and dance and have that be it. With social media, it’s easy to get caught up in the latest fad and want to do all the new pole and floor tricks whether our bodies are really ready for it or not. One of the things I most appreciate about Liquid Motion is that rather than chasing the latest fancy move, it focuses on understanding technique to make any move special. This allows many movements to be readily accessible to a wide variety of students, and helps a person to quickly identify if a particular move is not going to be their move today.
7. What’s your all-time favorite song or musician that makes you want to get Liquid?
I’m a Gemini – don’t make me choose! 🙂 I love so many songs and artists and feel that Liquid is not limited to a certain genre of music. My current top two are “Honey,” by Sebastian Roca, and “Do It For Me,” by Rosenfeld. I’d also never pass up an opportunity to get Liquid to Janet Jackson!
8. Do you have any hidden talents?
I can get a healthy nutritious dinner on the table for two kids in under 30 minutes – trust me, it’s a talent! Also, a lifetime ago, I was a figure skater.
9. You have quite a following at your home studio. The instructors and students really admire you! Do you have any tips for aspiring or new instructors who are hoping to build a supportive community like yours?
Awwww… That makes me feel really good! I’ve been very lucky to have the full support of The Dollhouse Fitness management team, and it created a strong foundation from the beginning. I’d say if you are looking to start teaching Liquid Motion, make sure to talk with the studio/gym owner and/or manager to ensure they understand what a Liquid Motion class is, and how you envision it fitting into their mission and current curriculum. I also really took to heart the idea that a Liquid Motion class is an experience, and part of that experience is ME: my strengths, my shortcomings, my quirky anecdotes, music, and my swear words – uh… I mean “unconventional cueing.” 😉 I try to show through my words and actions that part of learning is experimenting, trying new things, and not always being successful. It helps create a safe, supportive environment for students to express themselves un-apologetically through movement.
10. What advice would you give someone who is thinking about trying out the Liquid Motion class for the first time or thinking about taking a Liquid Motion certification?
If you are thinking about signing up for a class or certification, come with an open mind. Liquid Motion can be both physically challenging and mentally stimulating. Not everything is going to be everyone’s move, but that doesn’t mean you should pass on the opportunity to learn and grow. And of course, DO IT – don’t wait! I missed the opportunity to get certified in Virginia because at the time I thought I wasn’t good enough – how ridiculous was that! It was another four years before things worked out for me to take the certification – so don’t wait. Do it. Be ready to be humbled, to learn, and to have a great time!
11. In one sentence, share a life lesson you’ve learned – maybe a piece of advice that you’ve always held onto or a random comment you heard in passing that stuck with you. What do you think everyone should hear at least once in their lifetime?
“There is enough spotlight for all of us to shine.”