Today we’d like to introduce you to Camille Loftin.
Camille, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
It’s funny to think about the question “how did you get you start?” Movement, in some capacity, has always just been a part of my life. At a young age, I think as young as 2 years old, my mom put me in dance class and it stuck. There has not been a time when the movement wasn’t a central part of my life. I grew up dancing in Kansas City and spent my late teens and early 20’s traveling and living in different cities, working with and professionally performing with various dance companies.
By my mid 20’s, I had developed a deep desire to combine my dancing and political activism in order to express, artistically, my dissatisfaction with the injustices of the world. I wanted to dance to be more than just this pretty thing people look at. So I started two different politically inspired dance companies that had some relative success. I wanted movement to spark dialogue, and I wanted that dialogue to encourage change, to make for a better world.
I also knew that art, and especially dance, wasn’t going to be lucrative, so it became extremely important for me to figure out how to blend the two – movement and being financially independent. I got my Pilates certification in 2005, and what I didn’t know at the time, was this decision would literally reshape the way I taught and approached movement. I have since received another Pilates certification as well as a Yoga Alliance certification, and it is with these two modalities, my career really started to take shape.
I am now interested in how we use movement to heal trauma. Our bodies literally carry our trauma, holding onto it in ways, physically, that we aren’t often even aware of. And over time, we can become hardened or shut off, or whatever it is we need to do to get by. What movement does, is it allows us to work through those manifestations physically, with the idea, that eventually the deeper scars of our past begin to fade.
And my interest lies in simply helping people, guiding them, through movement, to heal, in whatever capacity they need to. I believe strongly in the power of movement and how it can change our lives.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Is anything ever a smooth road, really? If it is, I think maybe you weren’t on the right road. In all seriousness, there were many, many struggles along the way. I think the most obvious one being my own battle with addiction and the subsequent havoc and chaos my addiction wreaked on not just my own life, but to the lives of those around me. I am happy to say, I have been sober for close to four years, but it was a lot of work and heartache and pain to get here.
Lost relationships, a divorce, and not to mention the psychological damage I had created. But, once I decided to get and stay sober, the awakening was so, so sweet. And the exciting thing is, the work isn’t done. The awakening is only just beginning. And through the work I do, helping others through their own battles, I get to continue to heal myself each and every day. It’s not a bad place to be.
We’d love to hear more about your business.
The current iteration of my business is offering group and private yoga, Pilates and dance classes. I am able to cater each session based on individual needs and wants. However, my business is slowly evolving into a more holistic and well-rounded offering.
I am currently training to administer Neurofeedback Therapy, which I will add to my repertoire by the year’s end, offering up private sessions to those struggling with a multitude of situations – from depression to anxiety to addiction. My partner (a talk therapist) and I are also gearing up to facilitate couple’s retreats, in which we will use different modalities (talk therapy, movement and breath therapy, amongst others) to create deeper and more meaningful intimacy for couples.
As far as my dancing goes, I mostly choreograph these days. I was honored with an Ovation Award nomination this year for my work and choreography in the play MARTHA. I am fortunate enough to have the ability to pick work that will project a progressive and political standpoint, as I feel strongly that my work should have a message.
I think what sets me apart (because let’s face it, we are in LA, the land of retreats, meditation gurus and yoga experts), is my dance background. As much as I want to use movement to heal, I don’t want it to be at the expense of alignment and safe practices.
Dance all but forced me to have a deep understanding of the body, kinetically and physiologically. I have four certifications (ranging from dance to yoga to Pilates), 20 years of professional experience, and 17 years of teaching experience. I have worked with all kinds of bodies, injuries and special needs.
I spent years working with adults with developmental disabilities and using movement therapy as a way for them to express themselves and heal. But I also think what sets me apart is the fact that I myself have gone to hell and back and have a deep desire to help others on their journey. I especially want to help women heal our ancestral and familial traumas through kind and loving guidance.
What were you like growing up?
I was always an outgoing and curious kid. I had a special interest in getting to know the “outsiders” in school. I was interested in people’s stories. I had this insatiable need to know – to the point of it being problematic. I was forever in trouble for talking too much, whether it was in dance class, school, or to random people on the street. I was (and still am) a loving and kind kid. But wildly sensitive, too.
I remember often being incredibly saddened by the ways of the world and may need to correct the wrongs of the world often outweighed practicality, not to mention I was an 8 year old with not a lot of resources. I guess you could say I was an empath from the start, and while I had strong desires to meet and engage with other people.
I also found a lot of comfort being at home, amongst my things and in a place where I could simply be me. Which usually meant acting out wild stories with my stuffed animals or writing stories or learning dances from music videos. I enjoyed being a kid.
- Private yoga, dance or Pilates sessions – $125.00/hour
- Semi-private yoga, dance or Pilates sessions (2-4 persons) – $95.00/hour
- Group yoga, dance or Pilates sessions (5+ persons) – $75.00/hour
- Website: camilleloftin.net
- Phone: 213-949-4720
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: Camill3_3lizab3th
Adria Baratta, Jim Dziura