Behind The Movement

Shira Yaziv

Shira Yaziv is a dancer, bodyworker, and facilitator.  She enjoys encouraging people to be in their bodies while learning new skills, being creative, listening and adapting to the changing present moment.  Shira is the co-founder and owner of  Athletic Playground (, a dynamic indoor place-space, inspiring physical play through a wide variety of movement classes. Details about upcoming retreats and workshops:

In this conversation Shira discusses dance, technique, the space in between, and "loving to be."  She shares about her passion for being a facilitator, and how facilitating differs from teaching.  She also talks performing, and how her enjoyment lies in the preparation and collaboration before a performance.  Shira and Kyle chat about their mutual appreciation and interest in practicing outdoors.  

Soisci Porchetta

Soisci is a movement and meditation teacher based in Australia. She has been practicing for over 17 years and teaching for the past 9 years. Her formal movement practice began with martial arts, which culminated when she became Muay Thai world champion in 2011. Soisci transitioned into a generalist movement practice in 2013 when she studied with Ido Portal and Odelia Goldsmidt for four years. Today she studies movement from Jozef Frucek and Linda Kapetanea, and has a spiritual mentor, Rajivji Kapur, whose influence has been most transformative for her.

Soisci's story and teachings are an amalgamation of all the different unique experiences that have made up her life so far; her Eurasian heritage, growing up in 8 different countries, competing professionally in BJJ and Muay Thai, having a keen passion for cooking and creative expressio and meditation.

In this conversation, Soisci tells her story of competing in martial arts and the discovery of a generalist movement practice.  She also shares about the wisdom in the movie Kung Fu Panda.  And, Soisci and Kyle discuss the value of playfulness.  

Rafe Kelley

Rafe Kelley is the founder of Evolve Move Play, a natural movement teaching method, rooted in his dozen years of parkour training, 25 plus years of martial arts and various years of dance, gymnastics, and strength and conditioning training. In addition, it is deeply rooted in his study of human evolution, ethnography, anthropology, play research and complex systems.  Evolve Move Play is recognized worldwide as a leading voice in natural movement and broader movement culture.


Prior to forming Evolve Move Play, he co-founded Parkour Visions, the first parkour gym on the west coast and acted as lead instructor there for 4 years.

In this conversation, Rafe discusses his philosophy of natural movement and a generalist practice.  He shares his approach to strength training, and what should be the "meat and potatoes."  He also talks about the need to build better problem solvers, and dives into his thoughts on spirituality. 

Stephen Jenkinson

STEPHEN JENKINSON, MTS, MSW is an activist, teacher, author, and farmer. He is the founder of the Orphan Wisdom School in Tramore, Canada and the author of four books, including Die Wise: A Manifesto for Sanity and Soul, the award-winning book about grief and dying, and the great love of life. In 2015, he created Nights of Grief & Mystery with Canadian singer-songwriter Gregory Hoskins. With a 5-piece band, they have mounted international tours and released three albums, most recently DARK ROADS and ROUGH GODS. For more information you can visit

In this conversation, Stephen discusses approaching art as a citizen as opposed to an individual, the illusion of control in health and fitness, and his new albums DARK ROADS and ROUGH GODS.  And, the episode closes with the track "Exegesis" from ROUGH GODS. 

Samantha Star

Samantha Star utilizes her knowledge of pole, gymnastics, yoga and handstands as a dynamic performer,  playful competitor and informative instructor. She believes perfecting fundamentals is the best way to gain strength and coordination.  By focusing creatively on technique, she helps students attain a solid platform from which they can achieve confidence, strength and power. Samantha teaches at Body & Pole, Warrior Bridge and virtually on zoom from her living room in NYC . She also travels the world to perform, compete, judge, train and teach workshops.

In this conversation Sam talks about her  childhood spent camping, climbing, snowboarding, and doing gymnastics, and her journey into the world of pole.  She shares her experience in pole competition and her evolution into teaching.  She also discusses her passion for hand balancing as well as her goals and current approaches to the practice.  She reveals teachers she looks forward to practicing with and learning from in the future.

Yuri Marmerstein

Yuri Marmerstein a professional acrobat based out of Las Vegas, Nevada.  He comes from mainly a self-taught background and eventually went on to perform on a professional level and teach all over the world. In addition to performing, he teaches workshops in hand balancing, acrobatics, and the physical arts to help people gain a greater sense of freedom and self-awareness.

In this conversation, Yuri discusses his recent exploration of voice-over and film acting.  He shares his story and process of learning acrobatics, hand balancing, and gymnastics.  He also talks about his work as a professional performer, often for Las Vegas corporate events.  And, he opens up about how the material he teaches in workshops is often a vehicle for even deeper concepts, and the power of the process as opposed to getting focused on the outcome.  

Brian Johnson

Brian Johnson is the owner of The Movement Standard in Dallas, Texas. Brian began as a student of Ido Portal in 2014 and continues to study, practice and teach what he has learned from his and others to his students. He is passionate about the holistic quality a movement lifestyle brings and combines his knowledge of physiology, anatomy, nutrition and biochemistry to help others live out their dream and express themselves with and through movement.

Brian holds a Bachelors of Science in Exercise Physiology and has been teaching/coaching for over 20 years.

During this conversation, Brian discusses his approach to maintaining his business and community amid the pandemic.  He also opens up about his passion for teaching, being a human generalist and technology's reduction of direct sensory experience.

Sean Langhaus

Sean Langhaus is a NYC based movement and acrobatics teacher and the founder of the studio Warrior Bridge located in downtown Manhattan. His movement background includes years of experience in partner acrobatics, martial arts, yoga, flexibility training, handstands, skateboarding. His teaching is informed by the study of anatomy and movement science and brings together techniques and tools from a variety of movement styles and lineages.

During this conversation, Sean shares about the origins of his studio, Warrior Bridge.  He also discusses his extensive movement background, and how he went from skateboarding and martial arts to yoga, partner acrobatics, and hand balancing.  With a rich understanding of yoga's origins, he fields Kyle's questions about the practice and shares his approach to teaching hand balancing.

Philip Chubb

Phil is co-founder of MindfulMover: An online training company that focuses on a unique form on minimalist training.  Minimalist training is about maximzing the range of gains and carryover made while minimizing the time it takes to train and get them. 

During this conversation Phil and Kyle discuss reevaluating their approaches to strength training.  Phil talks about the minimalist approach to strength training and the research he has done to arrive at his current philosophy.  He also shares where he gives his time now that he spends less of it in the gym.  He reflects on his years in martial arts, meeting students where they're at, and the need for compassion.

Elke Schroeder

Elke Schroeder is a Toronto-based dance artist. Her diverse movement background includes dance of many styles, floorwork, acrobatics, yoga (Octopus Garden Teachers Training and Mentorship programs graduate), functional movement and martial arts. Her greatest influence is the Fighting Monkey Practice, a task-based, longevity-driven practice created by Jozef Frucek and Linda Kapetanea (RootlessRoot). A close student of Jozef and Linda, Elke is a designated FM instructor.

During this conversation Elke and Kyle discuss embracing uncertainty, exploration, and shedding rigidity.  Elke shares about her first exposure to Fighting Monkey coordinations.  They ask the question, "What is a generalist?"  And, they dig into the concepts of resilience and change.

Kevin Neglia

Kevin Neglia is a student, teacher, and owner of Loco Motion New York, a studio in Long Island where he shares his philosophy and experiences with his community. He has studied with many great teachers and has been studying “movement” since 2016 with Ido Portal. This practice has led him to adopt a philosophy which addresses our lifestyles, connection to our bodies, and bodies connection to our world and nature.


In this conversation Kevin and Kyle discuss the changes, adjustments, and silver linings of practicing and teaching amid Covid-19 and his recent exploration of gardening and hunting. They also question, "What is strength?" 

Yuval Ayalon

After a 20 year career as an international and collegiate gymnast, followed by an 8 year run in the Las Vegas spectacle “Le Reve”, Yuval Ayalon transitioned into a full-time handstand practitioner and teacher.  As an experienced hand balancer he now shares what he has learned throughout his life in handstand workshops on a regular basis all over the world.  He follows the teaching of the late, legendary handstand artist and teacher Claude Victoria, and continues to research this incredible art form through practice and self-exploration.

In this conversation, Yuval shares his experience as a collegiate gymnast and his transition from competitor to performer.  He discusses his focus on the art of hand balancing, his approach to teaching, finding opportunities to be a beginner, and his current research in head standing.  

Joseph Bartz

Joseph Bartz is a movement teacher based in Berlin, Germany.  

During this conversation Joseph and Kyle discuss the concept of being a human generalist.  Joseph shares about his use of imagination as an educational tool.  He also discusses interacting with the world through our innate senses and through technology.   And, he shares his thoughts on the importance of change and the willingness to say, "I don't know."

Carsten Stausberg

Carsten Stausberg is the founder of Martial Movement Arts in Cologne, Germany. A multidisciplinary space with emphasis on Martial Arts & Movement Training.  A long time student of Luo Dexiu, Carsten's background is in the Internal Martial Arts of Bagua Zhang, Xingyi Quan & Taiji Quan, which he teaches in classes, workshops and through Online Coaching. He spent 20+ years in various martial arts such as Shaolin Gong Fu, Chen- & Yang Style Taiji Quan, Karate, Wing Chun and Judo, focusing on the Internal Arts over the last 15 years.  Carsten holds a B.A. in Chinese Philosophy & Literature from National Taiwan Normal University, graduated from a Chinese Medicine program and is a Certified Coach for Personal Development.

During this conversation Carsten shares the principles of internal martial arts.  He talks about a recent teaching collaboration with Tom Weksler.  He also discusses Bagua Circle Walking, and his more recent research in Brazilian jiu-jitsu.  And, he and Kyle talk books.

Margot Ciccarelli

Born and raised in the UK, but based in New York and Hong Kong, Margot has studied martial arts for 20 years (Chinese martial arts, Kendo and Brazilian jiu-jitsu). She is currently a brown belt under Murilo Santana at Unity Jiu jitsu (NYC) and is known as both an active nomadic competitor and traveling coach. Her current movement practice is a blend of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, contemporary and house dance. She is also the founder of Nomadic iD.  Her current passion project is around the topic of classroom design and pedagogy in jiu-jitsu as well as curating better learning experiences both online and offline.

During this conversation, Margot and Kyle commiserate on the last 6 months of lockdown, and what that has meant for teaching and practice.  Margot shares her multi-level passions of athlete, artist, and teacher.  She also discusses her thoughts on, and approaches to, creativity and transferable skills.  She talks about teaching, and her desire to not just teach technique, but give students the tools to learn.

Marlo Fisken

Marlo has studied dance for 30 years, taught movement for 20 years, and has performed in movies, commercials, and TV shows. She holds degrees in Anthropology and Public Relations is an international pole dance champion, and has developed several teacher trainings for pole dance and floor work.

Marlo is the creator of Flow Movement. She specializes in helping people access a Flow state as they play and dance with their environments.

During this conversation, Marlo discusses her journey including professional dance, fitness, and pole dancing.  She also shares thoughts on her approach to teaching, and the use of imagination as a teaching tool.  Marlo talks about lessons and inspiration from improv comedy classes, and a vision for creating a movement and comedy collaboration. Both Marlo and Kyle share their apartment nightmare stories from their early days in New York. 

Paul Schreiner

Paul Schreiner is a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt under Claudio França who worked extensively with Garth Taylor, Marcelo Garcia, Dave Camarillo among others. Co-founder of the Kaijin Academy in Santa Cruz, California, Schreiner also gained notoriety in BJJs community as a coach at the Marcelo Garcia Academy – Alliance New York, where he helped develop the games of several high-end athletes produced by this prestigious training ground.
Paul and Kyle talk about teaching technique as vehicle for developing sensory and kinesthetic awareness and the broader skills within the art jiu-jitsu. Paul shares about his passion for fly fishing and surfing, and the transferable skills they share with BJJ. He also discusses his practice of Iyengar Yoga and his interest in breath work. And, he talks about the plans the Marcelo Garcia Academy has for reopening after closing in March due to Covid-19, and what classes will look in the beginning.

Rodrigo Salulima

Rodrigo is the owner and founder of the largest movement facility in Brazil: Pratique Movemento.  He has a degree is physical education, practiced capoeira for 16 years, and has been studying with Ido Portal for 7 years (5 of which under his Mentorship Program).  Along with teaching at his facility, he also teaches movement to professional fighters at Cerrado MMA, the largest MMA facility in Brasília. 

On this episode Rodrigo and Kyle discuss meeting at Movement Camp in Thailand.  Rodrigo shares about his experience managing his facility and instructing his students during Covid-19, and the lessons he has learned.  He talks about his education, capoeira, and working in an office with a government job prior to teaching movement.  He also opens up about his passion for syntropic farming.

Jozef Frucek

Jozef Frucek is one the founders of Fighting Monkey Practice, developed through a deep study on cross motion analysis and with aim to understand the principles of the human movement, communication and the ageing process.  He has been studying under the guidance of Master Ming Wong C.Y., also a doctor of Chinese Medicine, the internal principles of movement and their relation to health and ageing. Jozef got his ArtD degree on Voice and Movement in 2002 under the supervision of Ludmila Machatsova, who is considered as one of the most influential communication trainers.

Phaidra Knight

Phaidra Knight is a former international athlete, sports media talent, motivational speaker, lawyer and business entrepreneur.  In 2010, she was named the US Rugby Player of the Decade. In November 2017, she was inducted into the World Rugby Hall of Fame.
In this conversation between friends, Phaidra and Kyle reflect on how they were connected via Kyle's aunt who hosted Phaidra in Florida while she trained for Olympic bobsled tryout. Phaidra discusses her passion for trying new things, her training in MMA, her non-profit PeaK Unleashed and her new clothing line PSK Collective.

Gabe Polsky

Gabe Polsky is an acclaimed documentary film director, writer, and producer.  His films include In Search of Greatness and, most recently, Red Penguins.  In this conversation, Gabe shares his journey from competitive hockey to film making.  He and Kyle chat about creativity and the role generalization plays in its development.  Gabe also discusses his latest film and future ambitions for feature films.  

David Foster

David Foster is a licensed acupuncturist and herbalist in Traditional Chinese Medicine, specializing in the treatment of neurological and autoimmune conditions.  Kyle and David met when they were both performing stand-up comedy in New York City. After 15 years in stand-up, David stepped away from the mic and focused his attention on Chinese medicine.  Kyle and David reminisce and commiserate on their days in comedy and their decisions to quit. 

Maillard Howell

Maillard and Kyle met as students of the coaching program at CrossFit Virtuosity. Maillard went on to open CrossFit Prospect Heights, and is now the co-owner of Dean CrossFit. Maillard talks about his journey as well as the lessons he's learned as a small business owner in Brooklyn; the ups and downs, and successes and struggles. He also discusses the recent changes at CrossFit HQ, including his direct participation in communicating changes for the betterment of the CrossFit community to the owner and CEO.

Nelson Cuadras

Nelson Cuadras is the host of The Daily Practice, a podcast that explores the routines of its guests; many of whom are educators and performers in the physical arts. When he’s not working on The Daily Practice, he’s teaching his client’s, in person and online, how to bring more focus and presence to their lives with the aid of hand balance training. You can find him in Miami, Florida or online at @nelsoncuadras

Keith Wittenstein

Keith Wittenstein is a CrossFit Level 4 coach and has been coaching CrossFit, jiujitsu, yoga, barbells, kettlebells and gymnastics for 20 years. He is a former owner and operator of two separate CrossFit gyms in New York City.  He now lives and coaches in New Jersey, and work on the CrossFit Seminar Staff.  

Carl Paoli

Carl Paoli launched Gymnastics WOD in 2010, assisting Jami Tikkanen in coaching Annie Thorisdottir to win back to back CrossFit Games titles in 2011 and 2012, writing the New York Times Bestselling book Freestyle, becoming a member of the Ownership Group of STRIKE MVMNT, and founder of Freestyle Connection - a Media and Digital Learning company based in San Francisco.

Matt Bernstein

Matt is a student of Ido Portal and has an obsession with process, teaching and quality.  Matt began teaching Movement in Brooklyn, NY where he worked with Golden Globe winning actors, Tony Award winning stage performers and people from multiple disciplines.  Matt did not grow up an athlete and has learned much of his practice as an adult.  Matt Started the Boulder Movement Collective, now known as Ape Co Movement School.

Fabio Tavares

An hour of discussion with Fabio Tavares.  Fabio started off as a competitive gymnast before running away to join the circus at the age of 15 to become a professional acrobat. He pursued a life-long career as a physical actor, dancer and movement educator. He has toured the globe performing and teaching with the high-impact STREB -EXTREME ACTION dance company for over 14 years. 

Darci Anderson

An hour of discussion with Darci Anderson.  Darci has been practicing and studying the body and human movement since 2008. Her work is deeply informed by relationships between human animals and non-human animals as well as questions of Nature and Culture.

Hudson Taylor

Listen as Kyle chats with Hudson Taylor.  Hudson is a 3X NCAA All-American wrestler from the University of Maryland and ranks among the top 5 pinners in NCAA history. He is a former wrestling coach at Columbia University and is the Founder and Executive Director of Athlete Ally. Founded in 2011, Athlete Ally's mission is to activate athletic communities to exercise their leadership to eliminate homophobia and transphobia in sports.

Emily Sanderson

An hour of discussion with Emily Sanderson.  Emily is a dance and movement instructor, pole dancer, performer, and practitioner of improvisation.

Alanna Kraaijeveld

An hour of discussion with Alanna Kraaijeveld.  Alanna is a professional contemporary dancer. She has over 15 years experience. Alanna shares her knowledge of movement across various disciplines including dance, theatre, and sports.

Paul McCarthy

An hour of discussion with Paul McCarthy.  Paul "The British Ninja" McCarthy has been the Director of the Martial Arts Program at UCLA since 2009.  He is highly accomplished in a range of martial arts.  Check out his TEDx UCLA Talk.

Dan Covel

An hour of discussion with Dan Covel.  Dan Covel has been training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu since 2002 and has a Black Belt in Judo. He is the owner of Dan Covel Jiu Jitsu Manhattan. 

Tom Weksler

An hour of discussion with Tom Weksler.  Tom is an accomplished teacher, dancer, martial arts practitioner and lover of different forms of acrobatic disciplines.  Kyle will interview Tom about all things movement, practice and teaching. Q&A will follow.

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