People come in all shapes and sizes, so why should fitness classes be any different? Working out doesn’t have to mean heading to a standard gym to run on the treadmill and life weights. Pioneers in the fitness industry like Katia Pryce have completely revolutionized what it means to be the most fit and healthy version of yourself. DanceBody was founded 2013 to provide a fun and effective workout by infusing functional training with the playfulness of dance. The company’s dancers-turned-instructors help you move your body in new ways through dance-inspired fitness.
For the seventh summer, DanceBody has made the Hamptons home to accommodate clients that have migrated from Manhattan for the warmer months. DanceBody has trained an impressive list of clients from Molly Sims to Kelly Ripa to Kate Hudson to Mark Cuban to Leah McSweeney and many others.
You might be thinking…”how hard can dancing for an hour really be?” Don’t underestimate the power of these classes. These incredibly talented dancers have choreographed classes that incorporate classic dance moves and strength training in one. The saying is true: “Don’t knock it till you try it.”
DanceBody classes are taking place at The Clubhouse in East Hampton as well as Hero Beach Club in Montauk. Clients can also book group and private home sessions.
I caught up with Founder and CEO of DanceBody, Katia Pryce, to learn more about her business.
The past year-and-a-half has undoubtedly been difficult for many industries, but especially fitness. What helped you and your team pull through and ultimately survive as a business?
KP: As an actively involved Founder and CEO, I’m “sneakers on the ground” every day at DanceBody. Being present, every day, rallied our team closer together to work harder and more creatively than we ever have. Ultimately, DanceBody survived because of our passionately dedicated team AND clients. People are the product, and when you strip away any fancy coverings, I’m proud of the tight-knit community we’ve built – it stood the test.
What changed about your approach to fitness during the pandemic and will anything carry through into this post-COVID world?
KP: Two things changed: Accessibility and Understanding. We’ve had a digital presence since 2016, and relaunched in January 2020, right ahead of the pandemic; however, so much more of our focus has shifted towards the digital landscape now. Making DanceBody accessible outside of NYC, The Hamptons, Miami, and LA is crucial, and streaming is certainly the best way to bridge those gaps. In addition to being more accessible, having an understanding for what the world at large is going through has become more top of mind for us. Enduring the pandemic was hugely emotional and isolating. I recognized my clients were craving shorter, more low impact workouts to be able to Keep Moving with less intensity. Without the energy of in studio classes, it’s tough to replicate a challenging workout solo. I can identify so much more now with our at-home “Stream Team” as we have affectionately dubbed them.
How did the Hamptons community help keep DanceBody afloat during the challenging times?
KP: This is DanceBody’s seventh season in The Hamptons, so when 2020 hit, we knew it was more crucial than ever for us to see our clients in person. I’ll never forget the tears of joy that flowed during those first few in person outdoor classes that Summer. Being “fit” wasn’t the number one reason for coming to class anymore, it was to be social, see friends, feel energy, and improve overall mental health. Our amazing Hamptons clients worked out with us in parking lots, tennis courts, driveways, beaches, grassy knolls – you name it! I’ve always said this, but during the pandemic it was more true than ever: our clients truly are the best. They make it work! The epitome of nice people dancing to good music.
What is your favorite part about the DanceBody summer pop-up over the past seven years?
KP: Getting to spend time with my team at our “Hamptons Hype House”. Our DanceBody trainers truly are a family and the “work hard, play hard” mentality we embrace goes a long way.
What is your message to people who are starting to get back into group fitness classes after the pandemic?
KP: YOU’RE READY! I know it’s been super tough for people who had previously been religious about their workout classes, now coming back after a long break. It feels intimidating, your fitness ability will feel different, you will instantly compare yourself to pre-pandemic circumstances. But our ongoing mantra has been: “permission to modify”. Everyone feels nervous the first day back in person, but you are not alone! It’s truly a cathartic experience that unties us all. No one is judging you, so don’t judge yourself! Small steps every day, it’s the only way to rebuild.
What makes DanceBody unique in its approach to fitness?
KP: Fun is at the forefront. The workout is challenging, but the people are nice and the music is great. That combination makes you feel like you can do anything – and actually, you can. Dance + music doesn’t equal a workout you can’t stand – there’s just no way you won’t enjoy it.
Classes are $50 each and packages are available. To sign up for a class, visit www.dancebody.com/dancebody-hamptons-0.
The Clubhouse is located at 174 Daniels Hole Road, East Hampton and Hero Beach Club is located at 626 Montauk Highway, Montauk. Classes will be taught at these locations through Labor Day Weekend.