Jaycee Gossett wants you to move—and be moved.
The lifelong dancer first found freedom of expression through movement via Latin ballroom dancing and a corresponding career in TV, film and theater. Still, it was when she discovered yoga’s marriage of movement and spirituality that she saw the full potential of her calling.
She embarked on a pilgrimage to Peru, India, Africa, Brazil, Cuba and beyond, where she studied the roots of movement with seers, masters and healers. Once back in the U.S., she immersed herself in learning movement therapy modalities like 5R and yoga trance dance with teachers like Gabrielle Roth and Shiva Rea, and completed a 20-hour teacher yoga training with Alison Sinatra.
Ultimately, she reconnected with Taryn Toomey and found her natural place as a senior teacher and director of training at The Class, which seeks to stimulate peace through strength. Gossett’s sessions are designed to inspire a sense of freedom and catharsis, a connection between the body, mind and soul.
Here, the movement expert describes the incredible power—beyond the classroom—of combining movement and intention:
Live The Process: When did your infatuation with dance begin?
Jaycee Gossett: My earliest memories involve movement. My mother had me in dance lessons as soon as I could walk. She was so happy to finally have a girl and couldn’t wait to get me in those tutus and tights. Unfortunately for her, I rejected anything that leaned towards what little girls “should” do and was way more of a tomboy. Sorry, Mom! That said, dancing has always been the space where I am happiest, the place I look to and where I feel the most like me. Naturally, my love of music goes along with my love of dance. Dancing quickly became a way for me to live inside the music, in my own big little world.
Image by Jaimie Baird
LTP: What about yoga resonated so deeply for you and how did that impact your approach to movement, overall?
JG: Yoga was my introduction to marrying breath to movement. We have the ability to shift our brainwaves with our breath—we really do. And it can truly transform how we feel. Just that connection alone was life-changing.
Yoga was also an introduction to moving toward an elevated, higher consciousness and spiritual connection. You know that moment where everything becomes illuminated? It felt like that for me. I kept expanding upon the idea of moving for a reason and applied that idea of “moving meditation” to all aspects of my life. I realized that when our intentions are met with the intensity of movement, there is an incredible opportunity to create magnificent breakthroughs—breakthroughs that go way beyond the physical surface. Moving this way opened up a deeper experience for me in my dancing and in my life.
If you let your workout become an opportunity to literally “work out” whatever you have going on in your life and let it be a chance to put what you want for yourself into motion, your fitness routine can be so much more than just a good sweat.
LTP: Can you describe your classes at The Class? What goes on? When you ask your students to “move in a way that matters,” what does that mean? What kind of freedom do you hope to help them find?
JG: It is very easy to fall into a pattern of disconnected living, where the body, mind, heart and spirit are not working together in a way that matters. We can all move the body and “be” without intention. I really encourage clients to connect the dots in Class by moving their bodies with integrity. Practicing this on the mat will then hopefully translate into their lives. I ask them to move how they feel, whether they feel happy, angry or lazy. I ask them to move for the breakthrough they need, the shift they are praying for, the change that they keep telling everyone they need. I ask them to embrace all of these things with passion for full self-expression.
Marrying intention with movement allows you to move something bigger than just your body. How you move is a direct mirror for how you live. If you can let your movement practice be the laboratory for how you want to experience this life, things will start to get pretty cool.
LTP: What wellness rituals or practices keep you feeling balanced and healthy?
JG: All the water I can drink. Moon Juice powders, Splendid Spoon soups, face food from Onda Beauty and everything Dana James tells me to eat.
LTP: What does happiness look like to you?
JG: I experience things from a place of feeling. To me, happiness feels like living in truth, fully expressed and engaged at my highest of high self. It also feels like being on the beach all day!
LTP: What does it mean to you to “Live The Process” and how can we all do that more each day?
JG: I love this. That phrase alone is such a great reminder! Yes! Let’s not wait for it all to happen one day and then start living. Let’s instead start living in the now of what is already here and happening. “The Process” is what’s current and currently happening now. If we can fully embrace the idea that the journey is living, then I think we will show up in a level of authenticity that is much more interesting than a finished product. Share your stories, your struggles, celebrate your milestones, breakdowns and how you got to these moments. Connect with yourself and those around you. Weep when you need to and laugh often. Live and love every moment of this fascinating human experience.
"Live and love every moment of this fascinating human experience."