Kyla Blacksmith is one mama who can seriously move. Creator of That's My Jam Dance - community dance classes that are an inclusive and positive space for women, this first-time mama is now well into her second trimester and still teaching classes, shaking her booty and keeping strong. To celebrate International Women’s Day we caught up with this Kyla to talk about how dance impacts female empowerment and how women coming together and dancing to influential music can be a catalyst for self-love.
What inspired you to start That’s My Jam Dance?
I started That’s My Jam because I felt there was a need for a safe and inclusive space for women to learn dance, feel empowered, to have fun and to form a community. I couldn’t find the class I was searching for so I wrote down my goals, hired a studio and with hard work and sticking to my values my vision came to life!
Your dance classes are all about creating a positive, judgment-free space for women where they feel can grow their confidence, feel fierce and dance like a queen… Tell us about some of the benefits you’ve seen women experience after getting their jam on in your classes.
I’ve seen That's My Jam classes influence women to make big career shifts, I’ve witnessed women falling in love with their bodies, make lifelong friendships, and have confidence in a newly found skill.
On a much bigger scale my students have shared with me that the classes have helped them process family death, miscarriage, divorce, cancer and new motherhood. Oh gosh, I’m gonna cry! Women are incredible.
You’re now in your second trimester of pregnancy and we’re loving seeing the videos of you shaking your pregnant booty. How does dancing while pregnant make you feel?
Oh thank you! Pregnancy is a huge physical and emotional shift for women, more significant than I ever could have imagined. Dancing has allowed me to keep in touch with myself and kept me feeling physically strong, sensual and happy! It is life’s greatest endorphins releaser. It's had its challenges, I taught all the way through morning sickness and I’ve certainly had to change the way I move and teach but overall dancing has been my gateway to enjoy making the shift from maiden to mother.
Small actions can have big impacts on gender equality and as we celebrate women on International Women’s Day, wow would you describe dancing’s role in female empowerment?
Teaching powerful movement to influential music is a catalyst for women to love themselves, own their bodies, claim their space and voice their needs. We’re still living in a very much patriarchal society and I’m determined to help bring it to an end. I hope that my work can make a small yet impactful change in our community.
Check out Kyla's insta here