DANCE FITNESS GURU, CREATOR OF THE PILABALLET WORKOUT, CHOREOGRAPHER, MASTER TEACHER
Tina Thompson has inspired and encouraged many in the field of Dance & Fitness through her mentorship and inspirations! For over a decade Tina has instilled excellence in the lives of many whom have studied with her and taken her classes. Her motto is
"BE YOURSELF, Everyone is already taken!"
We are a Health Fitness, Dance, Empowerment and Nutrition program. We strive to Empower and Uplift community through movement and implementation of healthy lifestyle improvements.
This was my first year attending fitcamp, and I had the time of my life. This camp shows you how out of shape you are, not only physically but spiritually. "You never know how strong you are until being Strong is the only option you have!" Fitcamp will bring it out of you. Thank you Tina Thompson #fitcamp2014 #TinaThompsonDanceFitness #TheBestCamp- -Darius Thomas
Hi Miss Tina!
I'm from your Thursday cardio class First and foremost, I want to tell you how much of an inspiration and positive influence you have been for me since joining Crunch. From the very first workout, I have had a feeling that you will have a very strong impact on me. In the past, I have had problems remaining consistent with the gym. As a former high school & college athlete (soccer, basketball and lacrosse), I found the gym to get boring even after a couple of weeks. When I'm in your class, I don't feel like I'm at the "gym". I honestly feel like I'm just in a room, doing something wonderful for myself, in the company of really amazing people. I actually LOOK FORWARD to your class on Thursdays. I want to thank you for changing my mindset about physical well-being. I know that I still have a ways to go before reaching all of my goals, but I am so grateful that you have given me the foundation to help steer me in the right direction. I truly think that meeting you has been life-changing.- S. Schwartz
IFSB PRO, 4X MS. FITNESS WORLD & IFF FITNESS WOMAN WORLD ATHLETE
20 Years of Experience!
BE YOURSELF Everyone else is already taken!
Pain is the reaction of the body, as long as you have the body, some pain is inevitable. Suffering is the contraction of the mind, and unlike pain, is optional. Don't add suffering to pain, -relax your mind and the suffering will pass.
DO POSITIVE THINGS WITH YOUR TIME, GET YOUR LIFE!
The Real Deal: We were dripping with sweat within ten minutes from the start of class, because Tina Thompson works you hard. It was non-stop jumping, squatting, and bending — all while trying to look graceful! We learned a (seemingly) simple combination, sort of like a super-mini routine, which we repeated with faster music and a quicker pace as the class progressed. Between the intense combinations and the constant jumping, we were so tired. We could really feel the burn in our calves, quads, and lower back — and our feet kept cramping up from keeping them pointed.
New York's Tina Thompson-Pope's flexibility is about the best out there. Her range and balance during moves like the heel stretch and straddle press on elbows never ceases to amaze onlookers. She's also an artful performer using her ballet and dance talents and uses costumes to lend a dramatic effect. She performed a unique variation of a plange seldom seen that appeared like human art itself.
- BODY BUILDING.COM
with DESTINY DEVINE!
May 2014 *BRING HEELS TO LEARN Beyonces MOVES!
REGISTER FOR TINA THOMPSON'S FITCAMP 2014!
SKIN will be Performing!
Congrats to Ms. FITNESS CATSKILLS 2013- JOHNEA DUPONT
Join us this May 25 for our 9thyear! Experience amazing training/instruction-with world class teachers and performers, self-wellness, inspiration, empowerment and come away with a fitness family of a lifetime. Make no excuse and blame others for your weaknesses. There is no better place to be so that you can help shape the portrait of your health into a beautiful picture! Get a free invitation to the 2014 MS. FITNESS UPSTATE NEW YORK Open Competition
Ok so duuuude.. I realized & confess, my endurance and overall fitness is loooow... Took a class today with some Insane Instructor exercise/dance Diva named Tina Thompson-Pope . Listen, the floors and walls were sodden, perspiring. Iyeee saw steam escaping my body lololo... yoooo she is bazzerk!! My heart wanted to pop out my chest. Ouch! rubbed it off and kept going. That lady is awesome! She will get you "snatched, tight & right" as she says!- MAAT PETROVA
Between ballerina buns and Black Swan-inspired clothes, it seems like ballet is having a big moment right now. So when we heard Crunch offered a ballet fitness class called "Tutu Fresh," we had to check it out!
The workout: Tutu Fresh is a ballet class set to music by artists like Beyoncé and Katy Perry , and it's based on the principles of ballet, jazz, and modern dance. It uses basic dance techniques and classic ballet positions to try to bring out the inner ballerina in you.
The Promise: The instructor Tina Thompson promised our quads and hamstrings would be burning from all the pliés and relevés, and that my shoulders and back would kill from keeping my arms "en haut" (raised high) the whole class.
The Real Deal: We were dripping with sweat within ten minutes from the start of class, because Tina works you hard. It was non-stop jumping, squatting, and bending — all while trying to look graceful! We learned a (seemingly) simple combination, sort of like a super-mini routine, which we repeated with faster music and a quicker pace as the class progressed. Between the intense combinations and the constant jumping, we were so tired. We could really feel the burn in our calves, quads, and lower back — and our feet kept cramping up from keeping them pointed!
I'm warning you...don't slack off in Tina Thompson's Tutu Fresh class at Crunch NYC. She's one fierce ballet instructor. She moves fast, doesn't sugar-coat ballet and doesn't tolerate lazy calves. Tina dishes out tough love, mad style and lots of inspiring words in 45 minutes of ballet fitness. Her intense, Juilliard-style instruction is awesome and by the end of class you really hope that you've pleased her. Check out my interview with Tina below.
MizzFIT: Tina, what drew you to ballet? If you weren't wearing a bun and didn't have such amazing posture, I would've never guessed.
Tina T: I was drawn to ballet from the Dance Theatre of Harlem. Virginia Johnson was the first black ballerina I ever saw that was famous! Arthur Mitchell handpicked me for a scholarship while at Juilliard and I returned every summer thereafter. He was a great influence as well as Bessie Elmer and Walter Raines.
MizzFIT: You have really really really long nails - I love them. Have they been with you throughout your dance career?
Tina T: I have had long nails on and off since High School. I was always dressing different or slightly eccentric back then. Nothing has changed. I had a modern teacher at Juilliard call me a witch when I was doing a Graham technique class! I smiled and kept contracting because I had been a Full scholarship student at the Graham School long before Juilliard and performed works with the repertory ensemble at age 16 and at the Metropolitan Opera House with the Graham company and Baryshnikov. So her calling me out only showed that she feared me! lol...besides I'd never seen her on stage with the Graham company so she didnt matter.
MizzFIT: Your confidence is contagious and it definitely keeps your Tutu Fresh students coming back for more. The first time I came to your class you talked about always being proud of who you are. You preached self-confidence, individuality and courage...how does this philosophy connect to staying fit?
Tina T:We are athletes of spirit and all forms of exercise must start with spirit first. You are empty and not whole without some form of energy or inspiration. Life is too short for low self esteem. BE YOURSELF...everyone else is already taken!
MizzFIT: It's so important to think that way! You don't get that kind of wisdom in most fitness classes. So how did you end up teaching at Crunch gyms?
Tina T:I was in transition from leaving a sports club where I worked for 10 years, and finally had enough. They were breeding cookie-cutter workouts and instructors. I had a massive following and they just wanted me to water everything down. Crunch let me raise the bar and be the signature that I am. NO JUDGEMENTS! I loved it! Its what I stand for.
MizzFIT: I'm dying to know where you shop for cardio-dance clothes.
Tina T:I like to wear comfortable yet sexy clothing when I move. Nothing contraption-like but just fabulous and light! I advise women to take a look at Sansha newyork and scan the racks. There are one-of-a-kind pieces that other general dance brands dont have! This is why I love the Sansha brand. Phillipe [of Sansha] stays in touch and personal with all of his products and everything he supports and sells.
MizzFIT: Can you tell my readers about your dance bootcamp?
Tina T:My dance Bootcamp is every year at my FIT CAMP. Its a 3-day workout empowerment retreat. We teach 2 hour workshops on performance and cardio techniques including pilates, conditioning, outdoors, nutrition, and self empowerment seminars.
MizzFIT: Your 2 role models, Richard Simmons and Michelle Obama, couldn't be more different. Explain.
Tina T:Richard represents why I teach: To touch others lives, to share our lives and to make eachother better! He never had outstanding muscles on the outside but his biggest muscle was his heart! Impressive! First Lady Michele Obama, yes, i see a reflection of myself in her being shown as a positive role model and not the stereotypical - I AM BLACK WOMAN hear me roar. Women of any color can be intelligent, respected and recognized as well as marketable! This is what I am waiting for the fitness arena to see!
MizzFIT: Ballet was created for the elite and now, in many ways, it continues to be most accessible to the wealthy. You've shaken up the ballet scene for sure. But how do you think you've made your mark?
Tina T: I did not feel inferior for one moment as a woman of color [in ballet]. I actually felt more blessed. I rose from the area of a tough neighborhood after my fathers death and I know he would be very proud of how far I've come. He always stressed learning and being your best. I made my mark at the Ms. Fitness USA competitions by being the first fitness routine ever to be done en pointe...so off I went making my mark in the world of fitness as a dancer! Today, my dance company SKIN exudes the spirit of defying the stereotypes of what dancers should look like or appear to be technically. We are an intergrated group of talented athletes who connect in the spirit of dance!.
“I’m growing my hair out right now so I keep it in a little bun. I wash it every week at the hair salon. African American hair, it’s a process—you have to wash it once a week; if I washed it every day, it would fall out! So I go every week and get it washed, conditioned, and blown out. I go to a salon in the Bronx called Doris*—my hairdresser’s Doris—she is amazing. She’s been recommended to me by a ton of people. She assesses the situation and treats it from there. I get it relaxed every two to three months, otherwise it’s super curly. It’s not easy to manage when it’s curly! [Laughs] Anyway, it’s around $80 a week, but it’s worth it. I usually go to Ricky’s for hair products; I like this line called Mizani —it’s super moisturizing.
I’d always been afraid of experimenting with color because I have very dark skin, so it took me a while to get comfortable with adding a splash of color here and there. Now I’ll throw on a berry lipstick—I’ve learned that deep plum colors work well with my complexion. Like what I’m wearing right now—this is ‘Confession’ by Urban Decay . Normally I wear mascara, by Sephora or Givenchy . If something unexpected shows up on my face, I’ll use a little Makeup Forever concealer .
I’m obsessed with the gym. I love my fitness instructor Tina Thompson—she teaches at the Union Square and Lafayette Street locations of Crunch , so I alternate between those two. I take her classes five times a week. She does a combination of cardio and body sculpting, to a mix of really good, fast-paced music, so you’re constantly working. She’s hilarious—you’re laughing the whole time. And the people I see there become friends of mine, so it turns into this social event/workout. I think my gym membership is the best thing I’ve ever bought, because of her.”
Here are three easy tips to help you get back into shape and back on track from the busy Holiday season:
Healthy snacking. While it's not always easy to get all the nutrients you need from your meals, a nutritious drink can help. I always grab pretzels to snack on in between workouts and rehearsals. They are low in calories and replenish your sodium loss during recovery time. Choose a low-calorie beverage such as ODWALIA SUPER Protein that keeps you feeling fuller longer, electrolytes to help hydrate and an assortment of vitamins. Try this as a nutritious alternative to sodas, juices, sports drinks and other beverages at lunch, in the gym or at the office. Also consider packing granola bars, a piece of fruit or some nuts each day for a quick and easy snack that can help tide you over until mealtime.
As the fall leaves, snow begins to fall to the ground and we reacquaint ourselves with the extra blanket on the bed, it becomes evident yet another summer has passed. The sounds of kids splashing in the pool are replaced with the purr of the bus engine, and instead of waking at our leisure, we are greeted with the crisp early morning air of fall.
With the onset of a new season, our schedules take a bit of a beating. We seemingly become busier with the advent of a new month, knowing that it brings more than just a flip of the calendar. We can no longer linger over an iced latte and a summer salad; that precious time is now filled with running to meetings, getting kids from school to practice, and narrowly squeezing in our own workout.
Unfortunately, the aspect of our lives that suffer the most when our lives take unexpected turns is healthy nutrition. Ironically, the most important part of balancing a hectic life is to ensure your energy is at its peak, and your body is functioning at its best. Here are some tips and on-the-go food ideas you can take with you on your busy days:
1. Plan Ahead: If you know you won't see the likes of your house for the better part of 12 hours, think about what you and your family will need to make sure your duties are met with vigor and enthusiasm. Grab a piece of paper and write down all the activities, errands and meetings the next day will require and look to see where you will need to fit in a decent meal.
2. Just Call Me 'Sous': (Chef that is) Go Grocery Shopping on Sunday. Make a list of everything you'll need at the grocery store by meal and when you get home from shopping, cut up fresh veggies, make sandwiches, compile fruit salads and do as much prep work as you can for the impending week. This will cut down on the "I-don't-have-time-to-make-a-healthy-lunch,-therefore-it's-vending-machine-cuisine-for-the-week!" excuse.
3. Fruity Fruit: Cupcakes and candies will offer short-term enjoyment, but because these sugary snacks are nothing but refined carbohydrates and nutritionally void, your short term energy burst will crash and turn into a sugar-induced guilt coma. Swap candy for fruit and you can still get a sweet craving satisfied while also incorporating much-needed vitamins and minerals.
Some great on-the-go fruits include: bananas, apples, raspberries, blueberries and pears. Eat them plain or, combine one or more of these fruits with 3/4 cup of non-fat plain or vanilla yogurt and add a tablespoon of honey and you have yourself a nutritious fruit parfait!
4. Eat Your Veggies!: Your mother wasn't wrong when she told you to eat your peas. Vegetables are a food group that is often ignored, but are so important. It's understandable that you might not have 30 minutes to whip up a stir fry, but here are some great, and fast ways to incorporate veggies:
Baby Carrots come conveniently packaged and you don't have to worry about measuring either. Eat as many as you like. They are filled with beta-carotene, an important antioxidant for bone development.
Cut up chopped broccoli, cauliflower and any kind of pepper, toss them in a sandwich bag and bring non-fat dressing for dipping. This snack will fill you up and keep your blood sugar stabilized so you don't see dramatic spikes in energy levels.
Grab a stalk of celery and cut it up into several pieces. Add 2 tablespoons of natural peanut butter or low-fat cream cheese to 5 or 6 mini celery sticks.
5. Go Nuts: Nuts have a bad reputation for being fatty and salty. But they have too many benefits to cut them out of your diet. They have a huge amount of protein which helps you feeling fuller for longer (because they take awhile to digest); they also have plenty of antioxidants which help reduce the production of disease-inducing free radicals; they are very low in sugar; and have the 'good' kind of fats (monounsaturated) which help reduce your 'bad' or LDL cholesterol. The best kind of nut is the almond, which has some of the most nutritional benefits of all nuts. But if you have a hankering for cashews or peanuts, a serving size is approximately 12 nuts, so monitor your ingestion.
6. Green Tea: Instead of dousing your coffee with sugary hazelnut creamer and several tablespoons of sugar, consider switching to green tea. Aside from helping to prevent a host of diseases, it also helps to reduce overall cholesterol levels, and can even increase metabolism. If needed, adding a tablespoon of honey to an 8-ounce cup makes it sweeter on the palate.
7. Great Grains: We can't forget the energy-boosting benefits of whole grains found in bread and cereal. Choose labels that say "100% whole wheat" or have added fiber or vitamins. These products are low in sugar and high in nutrients and will keep your energy high. Spread 2 tablespoons of natural peanut butter on a piece of whole wheat toast and top with sliced banana for a quick, nutritious breakfast.
Fall is a great time for change. Add something to your day that will help increase your energy so you can tackle everything with a clear mind and a fully-functioning body. Dig deep and find what works for you, what kinds of foods you like and what will help you get through your day more efficiently.
8 Tricks For Instant Energy
(BlackDoctor.org) -- When you're most vulnerable to fatigue and stress, you need a foolproof plan to help you fight it. These eight strategies ensure you will wake up refreshed and recharged, remain alert throughout the day, and wind down just in time for a good night's sleep.
1. Wake Up
Don’t: Sleep in
Do: Get up at the same time and bath yourself in light
This enables your circadian rhythms, which are governed by your body's "master clock" in the hypothalamus gland, to stay in synch with the 24-hour day. In the absence of light, your body's sleep-wake cycle wants to delay by an average of 12 minutes every day and work on a 24.2-hour rhythm.
"That means your body wants to keep pushing your bedtime to later," says Mariana Figueiro, PhD, program director of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute's Lighting Research Center. "But if you let that happen and still have to get up at the same time every day, you're going to be tired."
To keep your circadian rhythms in time, aim for 30 minutes of light as early as possible every morning, even on a Saturday, by enjoying a half-hour stroll outdoors or having your breakfast by a sunny window. If your schedule forces you to wake up while it’s still dark outside, crank up the indoor lights – every little bit may help.
Don’t:Load up on carbs Do:Eat more protein
Although carbs can give you a burst of rapid fuel, they can also be an energy drain if you consume too many. Nutrition experts at the University of Illinois reported in in a recent study that people who reduced the amount of carbohydrates in their diets and raised the amount of protein reported feeling more energetic.
Keep your daily intake of healthy carbs below 150 g: five servings of vegetables; two servings of fruit; and three or four servings of starchy (preferably whole grain) carbohydrates such as bread, rice, pasta, and cereal. For instance:
3. Drink Coffee (yes! an ergogenic aid people! lol)
Don’t: Downing several cups first thing in the morning
Do: Save a cup for later in the day
You don’t just need it in the morning. Caffeine keeps you operating at a high level by blocking the effects of adenosine, a sleep-inducing brain chemical that accumulates as the day wears on. By the time adenosine builds up to the point where you start feeling sleepy—generally, late in the afternoon—the effects of your morning caffeine will have worn off, says James K. Wyatt, PhD, director of the Sleep Disorders Service and Research Center at Rush University Medical Center. "Having 1/2 to 1 cup of coffee or its caffeine equivalent during the late afternoon, when the pressure to sleep is high, will keep you energized," he says.
4. Time Your Meals
Don’t:Graze all day long Do: Eat your meals at the same time every day
Your body's caloric needs are closely tied to its other daily rhythms, including when you get up and go to bed and when you expend the most energy (during your late-day fitness walk, for example). "What will make you tired is if your body expects a 7 a.m. breakfast and a 12 p.m. lunch and you skip one of those," says Layman. "Chaotic eating leads to greater hunger and overeating."
WORKOUT RECOVERY IS NECESSARY!
Sometimes taking a few days off from the gym will give your body some time to recoverand repair itself both physically and mentally. Also make sure to get enough sleep(at least 7-8 hours a night) and be sure to focus on eating well by getting adequate amounts of protein, complex carbohydrates, and lots of fruits and veggies.
Most importantly, take care of yourself. Make sure you are eating a well-balanced diet and getting adequate sleep. If you're not feeling well, give yourself a break. You may end up doing more harm than good by pushing yourself to exercise if you're getting sick.
Make Sure You Are Eating A Well-Balanced Diet
And Getting Adequate Sleep.
Rest And Recovery
Allowing your body to rest and recover for a day (or two) gives your hard working muscles time to repair those tears, and a wonderful thing happens-your muscles start to grow back stronger! Without ample recovery time, you continue breaking down the muscle fibers and that's when fatigue and injurycan occur.
By taking one day off from your workouts a week, you are able to give your body the proper rest and recovery that it needs to repair itself.
By Taking One Day Off From Your Workouts A Week, You Are Able To Give Your Body The Proper Rest And Recovery That It Needs To Repair Itself.
It is important to balance your exercise with rest and recovery. It is this alteration of adaptation and recovery that will take you to a higher level of fitness. Remember, the greater the training intensity and effort you put into your workouts, the greater the need for planned recovery. There are limits to how much stress the body can tolerate before it breaks down and injury little, too slowly will not result in any improvement.
Alcohol and Diet
Alcohol comes from fermenting starchesand sugars. Alcohol has about 7 calories per gram. These are considered "empty" calories because alcohol contains no beneficial nutrients, such as vitamins and minerals.
Liquor; Diet - alcohol
Alcohol has about 7 calories per gram. These are considered "empty" calories because alcohol contains no beneficial nutrients, such as vitamins and minerals.
A 12-ounce beer contains about 150 calories. Sugary, carbonated beverages and fruit juices contribute additional calories when mixed with alcohol in a cocktail.
Beers, wines, and liquors all contain different amounts of alcohol. In general, a 12-ounce beer, a 5-ounce glass of wine, and a 1.5-ounce shot of liquor have about the same amount of alcohol and the same number of calories.
Beer is 3 - 8% alcohol. "Light" or lower-calorie beers are closer to 3% alcohol. "Hard" liquors contain about 40% alcohol and tend to be higher in calories.
White wines average 12% alcohol, and red wines average 14% alcohol.
"Proof" means the alcohol content of distilled liquors. It is the percentage of alcohol multiplied by two. For example:
50% alcohol = 100-proof
100% alcohol = 200-proof
Drinking alcohol affects your nervous system and acts as a mild anesthetic and tranquilizer. It is harmful if consumed in large amounts. It can be an addictive substance. Alcohol is a leading cause of traffic accidents in the United States because it slows reaction time and impairs judgment.
Moderate drinking is defined as 1 - 2 glasses of beer, wine, or other alcoholic beverage daily. Moderate alcohol consumption, especially when combined with a Mediterranean-style diet, has been shown to improve cardiovascular (heart and blood vessels) health.
Drinking alcohol can damage the lining of the small intestine and the stomach, which affects the body's ability to absorb essential nutrients.
Alcohol can impair sexual function, even though it may increase your interest in sexual activity.
Pregnant women should not drink alcohol. Alcohol intake during pregnancy has been identified as the cause of fetal alcohol syndrome.
Moves to Back You Up: The Routine by Marta Montenegro
Functional strengthening programs for the back should include controlled extension, flexion and rotation movements of the spine that mimic your daily activities. The latissimus dorsi, abdominals, obliques, quadratus lumborum and the erector spinae muscles (see diagram below) are important for providing stability to the mid and lower back regions. Developing strength and endurance in these muscles will help support your body in any activity or sport.
Aerobic: 3–5 times a week, 30–60 minutes.
Select low-impact activities such as swimming, cycling, walking and the elliptical machine , among others.
Strength: Perform the routine 2–3 times a week after warming up for 10–15 minutes.
• Beginners should start with one circuit and perform 12 reps using body weight.
• Intermediates or the advanced should perform 2–3 circuits of 15 reps per exercise. Weights can be added, but make sure to keep proper technique at all times.
• When performing the exercises, remember to draw in the navel about an inch, which will contract the transverse abdominal muscles without bringing about any forward flexion of the trunk by the rectus abdominis or the obliques.
CIRCUIT - A DOUBLY GOOD WORKOUT
The combination of aerobic and strength training is best. This circuit resistance program incorporating multi-joint exercises trains both the cardiovascular and muscular systems, and helps to increase and sustain bone density.
1. Lunge with diagonal shoulder raise
2. Bent over row, followed by dumbbell row on a Swiss ball*
3. Good morning on a Swiss ball*
4. Plank with leg raised
5. Side plank with trunk rotation
6. Pike (abdominal core exercise)
*Note: You will need a Swiss ball and one pair of dumbbells. For exercises 2 and 3, place your feet against a wall for support.
STRETCHING - STRETCH WORKOUT
1. Upper back
2. Piriformis (muscle in the gluteal region of the lower limb)
3. Hamstrings (back of thigh)
4. Hip flexors/knee extensors
5. Adductors (thigh region)
Hold each exercise for 15–20 seconds. Repeat each twice.
GENERAL TIPS FOR A HEALTHY BACK
To nourish those back muscles and keep bones strong, make sure to include plenty of food rich in anti-inflammatory properties, such as omega-3 fatty acids (flax seeds, walnuts, salmon), ginger, the enzyme bromelain (from pineapples), calcium, vitamin D, olive oil, berries, turmeric spice and cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts).
Have support that allows you to maintain a slight lumbar curve of the spine; both feet should be planted on the floor, head forward shoulders relaxed.
Don’t bend your back, lift from a squat position, and don’t twist the spine at any time. Keep the load close to your body.
If on your back, place a pillow under your knees; if on your side, place a pillow between your knees. Avoid prone (belly down) position.
EXERCISES TO AVOID
Studies show that sit-ups and extension of both back and legs simultaneously in prone position (such as the “superman”) can provoke an excessive compression of the lumbar spine.