MELISSA GENOVESE

Hometown? Toronto, Canada.

Favorite music artist or band? Currently on repeat; Childish Gambino, Solange, Kendrick Lamar and the Weekend. I grew up on Motown and soul so I have been listening to a lot of the “classics”.  Micheal Jackson will forever be the king of pop.

Dream vacation? Anything in nature by a body of water.

Favorite post yoga snack? A big glass of water and a Kombucha.

A quote you love? “When in doubt, touch your toes or child’s pose”. The first yoga class my husband and I took together was a little over his head. As students were flying into crow and handstands (in the middle of the room) he just kept a smile on his face, modified and backed off completely when it got to be too much. As we lay for our final shavasana he turned and whispered “it’s ok baby, when in doubt, touch your toes or child’s pose”.  I have never laughed so hard in my life, the class was NOT happy about that! His quote makes me smile and puts everything into perspective. Intuitively he was able to leave his ego at the door and be fully present. He wasn’t attached to doing every single pose. The entire class he was having a conversation with himself, navigating what he needed and blocking any judgements. This quote reminds me to listen, observe without judgement and stay light.

Personal mantra? Live by your gut, your intuition will point you in the right direction.

How did you get into yoga? As a professional dancer yoga was my saving grace. When I was a student at the National Ballet School of Canada my mom took me to my first yoga class. It was instant love. As I got further into my professional dance career my appetite for Yoga grew. I felt like my matt provided a creative space that was safe, it was a stark contrast from the mentality of the dance world. Yoga has been a light in my life and it is that gift that I want to share with my students.  

Favorite time of day to get your practice in? I love to practice at all times. Our energy shifts with the cycle of the day and I like how that effects one’s practice. In the morning our bodies and mind are just waking up so there is a real attentiveness that happens with a morning practice. In the afternoon/evening we’ve been up and going about our day. Our bodies are warm so the practice becomes more rajastic BUT our mind has also been going making it challenging to quiet the vrittis (mind chatter).  At night I feel like there is a surrendering quality.

What's your favorite part of Y7? First and foremost the people! Everyone involved with y7 shares the same passion for yoga and community. There is an energy about y7 that is infectious. You feel that warmth the second you walk through the doors. The music. I feel like I get to live out all of my hip hop fantasies through y7. Music is a source of creative inspiration and to have the freedom to share that with your students is something special.   As a teacher you watch students open up through the music, inhibitions are dropped. The flow. I love the structure behind the y7 flow. Your teacher guides you through the beginning of the flow and then hands it over completely to the student. I love that!  As teachers we’re guides, ultimately the student chooses what they want to take or discard from us. y7 gives students the space to find their own practice.