Did you know that exhale’s Core Fusion classes can keep dancers in tip-top shape? We didn’t either! Ambassador Jane recently look a class with Nefertiti Thomas, an exhale Core Fusion instructor and professional dancer here in New York City. Read on to find out more about Nefertiti’s story (and her killer Core Fusion Bootcamp class):
I recently tried Core Fusion Bootcamp with Nefertiti Thomas. Core Fusion Bootcamp fuses together yoga, barre, Pilates, weights and bootcamp-esque moves like mountain climbers – all set to the beats of Nefertiti’s killer playlist. She led us through the heart pumping class with seamless transitions between moves that wouldn’t necessarily go together but did (downward dog and mountain climbers — who would have thought?). An hour of moves on the floor and barre that included light weights, a yoga mat and core ball went by incredibly fast and left me super sweaty. Don’t let Nefertiti’s laid back and friendly demeanor fool you – this was a tough class!
A professional dancer and singer, Nefertiti was born and raised in Washington, D.C. She moved to New York City to study dance at Marymount Manhattan College. She discovered exhale through her friend (and fellow instructor) Erin Carpenter’s class. It was love at first sight; she began to train to become an instructor. She credits her success as a dancer to exhale’s classes.
And now, some Q&A with Nefertiti herself!
I discovered exhale through my friend Erin Carpenter after taking one of her classes. The workout was perfect as it was that holistic escape that I needed living in NYC. I couldn’t afford to keep going so I became a teacher to get free classes. I started training in between dancing jobs. I realized that this was going to keep me in shape when not working. I actually finished the training at exhale in Chicago and then auditioned for the Martha Graham Dance Company. At the time I was only doing Core Fusion, no dance classes. I felt so strong when I auditioned and got the job. I was really shocked! So I moved back to New York and I’ve been at exhale for the past 4 years.
Aside from exhale do you take any other fitness classes around NYC?
Not really. Mostly because of my schedule but also because I am able to find the perfect balance across all of the different types of classes here. I can do yoga, cardio and bootcamp as well. I really like the Core Fusion Sport class – it’s like a bootcamp and is great for mixing up into my routine – and obviously the signature Core Fusion Barre class.
Biggest workout pet peeve?
Music selection is so important! Instructors are responsible for setting a tone and mood of a class. So much of this is done with music – and of course the rest is due the instructor’s energy. Students are coming to get pushed to their limits and creating the right environment for that is our job! So I’d say not having a strong playlist is my biggest workout pet peeve.
Favorite songs to workout to?
I’m trying to find a way to use Beyonce’s “Drunk in love” but it’s too slow. I really like a lot of Usher songs. I like R&B slow songs to end class with. Or slow hip-hop.
Do you have any tips for people trying to get back into shape?
My advice would be to consistently motivate yourself even when you fall off track — especially when you fall off track. It happens to everyone! It’s a really tough thing to do but do not be discouraged…. even when you get into those rough patches, remember that you made a commitment and you HAVEN’T failed.