Kristin Calabria is a wellness professional who believes in cultivating a strong sense of authentic self through movement, breath, and somatic experience. Through her education in fitness (ACSM CPT) holistic wellbeing (RYT 200hr) and theater (BU CFA – Acting), Kristin creates an environment where all aspects of self are equally valued and explored. Kristin actively teaches group classes and private sessions in NYC. Currently based out of Class Heroes, Pure Yoga, and Y7, Kristin creates both physically challenging and emotionally awakening practices. She has been featured in several international publications sharing the knowledge she has gained with the wellness community.
What do I do best?
The thing that I do best is take care of others. It’s part of my make up. If I'm not, in some way, taking care of another person or thing or idea, I don’t feel like me. That being said, taking care of house plants is not my strong suit; I’m better at taking care of people. That happens in so many different ways. Sometimes it’s really seeing someone. Sometimes it’s listening. Sometimes it’s make soup and tea. Many times it’s teaching yoga from a place of openness, honesty, and authenticity. Whatever the method, the intention is the same: show up for people in a way that reminds them they matter.
What makes me the best version of myself?
Empathy and vulnerability. We all want to be seen. We all want to be understood. We all want to feel safe. These are all derivatives of the same experience: connection. Empathy and vulnerability are at the root of connection. How do we connect? As a yoga teacher, I interact with hundreds of people every week. The substantial, deep-rooted, authentic connection that we experience in real-life interactions feels hard to find in an increasingly digital world. I have spent most of my adult life cultivating empathy and vulnerability. I find that when I am able to show up as my full self, I act from a place of compassion and am my best self.
What are my aspirations?
My personal and career aspirations are tied up in one another. The truest version of me is here to help as many people as possible realize that they matter. So, my both my personal and career ambitions revolve around just that. In my business, I aim to travel the world, build community, and create a space where other people feel empowered to make bold choices and find the truest version of themselves. My personal goals include building a community of diverse humans that, no matter where we end up living in the world, are there to offer feedback, encouragement, and support.
My Biggest Success?
Last year, I set an intention for 2017: to travel the most I ever have and fully experience the diversity and complexity of people. This year, I traveled around the world and across the country soaking in completely new experiences and cultures, combining my work with my inquisitive nature. While inside those journeys there have been any success, the largest one is traveling, and then coming back home with more perspective and compassion. It has made me a better person.
My Most Challenging Moment?
One of the most difficult decisions I’ve had to make was the choice to pursue a “non-academic” course of study in university. I graduated college with a BFA in Acting and the learning I did at university forever changed me and set me on the path I am blazing now. But! I almost did not go to school for Acting, or as I like to call it school of learning how to be a good human. In my younger years, I was incredibly academic. Both of my parents are Civil Engineers and there was definite pressure to pursue a hard science in high education. The night I drove to Boston to audition for Boston University, I got in a massive fight with my parents. I almost did not make it to the audition and as in tears for the six hour car ride with my father. Deciding to go to school for acting meant letting down a whole tribe of people who only wanted the best for me. It meant choosing something vastly different than the safety of my books. It meant putting my heart and soul on the line. As a young person, it meant giving up any sort of privilege or connection I might have had in another discipline. It meant deciding to trust my gut, my heart, and choose to make waves instead of ride them.
Find Your Flow. We are so incredibly diverse; the way that we navigate life will also be incredibly different. Find what works for you, not for someone else, and do that thing.
My Favorite People/Role Models?
Jane Austen. For several reasons - if I read fiction, she’s my favorite because she exists in a time period where women are only important as the men they marry. Inspire, or perhaps because, of that, she paved her own path as a writer.
Bassel Van Der Kolk - he pioneered alternative treatment for trauma and is a thought leader in yoga as therapy. His book, The Body Keeps Score, changed my life, and forever effected the way that i relate to myself. Reading his book is the reason i want to go to graduate school to study yoga therapy. There is so much in the scientific world the validates the intuitive benefits of yoga. van der Kolk is on the frontline of this work.
Brene Brown- Another amazing human. In the same way that van der Kolk changed the way that I relate to myself, Brown changed the way I relate to other human. Ultimately her work has taught me how to be a more compassionate and empathetic teacher. Vulnerability is the foundation for any relationship, but especially the one that takes place in the work of the yoga.
My Favorite Places/Destinations?
Two of the most magical places I have been to are Oahu and Prague. Oahu has magic inside every leaf, breath, rainstorm. I have never seen so many rainbows in my life than when I was in Oahu. Pair that with the fact that I was leading a yoga retreat when I visited, and ultimately it became one of the most vibrant weeks of my life. I lived in Prague in my early twenties and have been forever impacted by a city that taught me about independence, passion, and artistry. Even though winter included wearing three layers of pants and two jackets, walking across the bridges between old and new city while it was snowing was unlike anything i have experienced. The reward for making it through the brutal winter is half marathons and summer days that will take your breath away. The city encourages it’s inhabitants to explore the culture through incredibly inexpensive tickets to theater, music, ballet, and art exhibits. The nightlife is also off the chain.
My Favorite Products/Objects?
My Journal- I write daily to unpack everything that has happened. Sometimes, I don't even realize that there are some thought patterns rolling around in my brain until I write them down. I have found that the more I physically write down my thoughts and feelings about events and people and ideas, the less all-consuming they become. Writing allows me to put every moment into perspective. In this way journaling allows me to choose the amount of significance I place on each thought.
Lavender Oil- My day-to-day life happens in an environment of near-constant stimulation. New York City is a hard place to live in because the energy of 90% of the people here is push/go/do/more. Even the most mindful person can easily get caught up in the whirlwind energy of the city. My yoga practice helps me to navigate the frenzy that is New York, and it is greatly aided through the use of essential oils. I carry lavender around with me always. Massive delays on the subway? Lavender oil on the wrists. General craziness on the streets? Lavender oil whiffs. Savasana assists? Most definitely lavender oil infused.
My Current Passions?
My current passions include learning, visiting new cities (both US and internationally), doing one new thing or something outside of the habitual every day.