Sweat SMARTer for Haiti at VSBJJ
In the midst of this current political climate, it may surprise you to know that we are holding a fitness charity event to help Haiti recover from it’s most recent natural disaster. There is a lot of focus right now on the DAPL, social injustice, post-election concerns and women’s rights- ALL worthy of our attention and issues that we, at SMARTer Bodies, care about and causes that we are always fighting for. It’s easy to forget, however, that our neighbors in the Caribbean are still struggling to find loved ones and rebuild their homes. The small country continues to struggle from the earthquake that devastated its land 6 years ago. But in October, Hurricane Matthew aggressively swept through Haiti wreaking havoc on the fragile land and civil infrastructure that Haitians worked so hard to rebuild. Aside from the 1000+ people that have died during the storm there is now the spread of disease, like cholera, taking lives.
We know it’s difficult to not succumb to the inertia of global issue overwhelm. Many of us feel powerless to help ourselves, let alone extend help to others so far away. We feel that in times like these, it is important not to lose sight of those who are in desperate need. Kim, our co-founder, has done the research and made the connections to find a charitable association that you can trust to help the Caribbean's forgotten. The Haiti Development Project has a specific mission
Haiti Development Project (HDP) speaks for thousands of invisible children in rural Northwest Haiti who are growing up illiterate and without the necessary resources to succeed in life.
For this important reason, Haiti Development Project (HDP) is championing the cause for universal primary education enrollment for thousands of unschooled children in rural Haiti.
We are one of a small number of NGOs operating and planting seeds in a region that is mostly isolated, poverty-stricken, underdeveloped and neglected.
It’s difficult to give even when you want to given all the corruption that happens in non-profits. Kim has taken the time to personally speak with the founder of HDP, an employee of the UN, Nionese Prudent, who was more than happy to answer all of Kim’s questions and make herself personally available to help with this project.
We can assure you that this non-profit is a aware of and committed to negating the corruption that makes others hesitant to send financial assistance. Here’s an organization that will continue to rebuild the lives of the students who have been once-again impacted by uncontrollable forces.
You can give by clicking this link (http://www.haitidevelopmentproject.org/) or by going to our charity event. It’ll be a day of fitness and fun! Teachers are volunteering to teach classes that you can enjoy while giving to people who are in need. Classes will be held at 2 different locations in midtown Manhattan. Classes will be $25 each and 100% of the proceeds will go to the Haiti Development Project. Class descriptions and schedule as well as teacher bios can be found below. Also, for the months of November and December our book, Exposing Yoga Myths will donate 50% of our profits towards the cause. You can find our book on Amazon or the e-book on http://www.smarterbodies.com/exposing-yoga-myths/
Here are the class times and descriptions (you can also find them when purchasing a ticket):
Kickboxing with Mario Hernandez at 2:00pm:
This class is an excellent way to burn some calories while learning effective striking techniques! Open to all levels, but be prepared for a challenge. Note: If you have your own boxing gloves, please bring them.
No Gi Brazilian Jiu Jitsu with Alvaro Tautiva at 3:00pm:
This no gi class is open to all belt ranks and will include a warm up, a couple of techniques and some live rolling. No gi apparel is appreciated, but not necessary.
This class will cover simple attacks to sensitive areas (groin, eyes, throat, etc.) that anyone can use for self protection. No prior training experience needed and open to all ages (18+)
This class will use simple, yet practical techniques that anyone can use to get themselves out of dangerous situations. These techniques can be used on opponents that are physically larger and stronger and are ideal for women.
Yoga with Kim at 6:00pm:
This class will address asymmetries, imbalances and compensation patterns found in grapplers and work to improve flexibility needed for difficult techniques and positions.
PICS AND BIOS TO FOLLOW
Kim-lien Kendall - Yoga Teacher, Personal Trainer and Co-Founder of SMARTer Bodies
After obtaining a degree in Biochemistry and deciding that her talents would be better spent helping people one on one rather than in a lab, she started working with bodies in 2005. Kim’s experience in gymnastics, sports and martial arts combined with her studies in somatics, kinesiology and biomechanics have equipped her with the knowledge and skill set to work with a wide range of clientele. She started SMARTer Bodies with Melissa in order to teach upcoming body workers from their combined experience and give back to the community by working with various organizations that benefit disenfranchised populations. She is a co-author of the book Exposing Yoga Myths and Co-founder of SMARTer Bodies.
Julio Rivera - Founder of Omni Martial Arts
Sensei Julio Rivera has been involved in health and fitness for twenty years as a bodybuilding competitor, personal trainer and journalist. He currently holds 3 black belts in Judo, Japanese Jiu Jitsu and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and has trained in HAGANAH (a no nonsense Israeli Self Defense style) and boxing. Sensei Julio has trained students who are agents and officers from the NYPD, Customs and Border Patrol, Secret Service and private security agencies. He has also helped train and corner MMA fighters.
Alvaro Tautiva - Assistant Instructor
Alvaro Tautiva is a Brown belt in both Judo and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Sensei Julio Rivera. Before joining the Omni family in 2010, Alvaro trained in Muay Thai and was a certified trainer with N.A.S.M. An active competitor in the BJJ scene, Alvaro has competed and medaled in several tournaments in the United States. In 2015, as a purple belt, Alvaro was runner up in the IBJJF Masters Worlds championship and soon after took 1st place in the no gi Pan-Ams championship. As an assistant instructor, Alvaro implements his background in speech and language pathology, from LaGCC and Brooklyn College, to help with the instruction of the children's programs at Omni Martial Arts.
Mario Hernandez - Assistant Teacher
Mario Hernandez is a purple belt in BJJ under Professor Vitor Shaolin and Sensei Julio Rivera. He is an active competitor in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and amateur Mixed Martial Arts fighter having trained under Bellator MMA standout Marcos Loro Galvao. Mario has been training since 2009 in various martial arts, (BJJ, Kickboxing, Boxing) In 2013, Mario scored his first MMA victory as well as a silver medal at the Big Apple BJJ tournament. He gained experience early on working with children as a camp counselor and now assists with teaching kids and adults at Omni Martial Arts.
Rafael Santana - Assistant Teacher
Rafael Santana is a brown belt in Judo and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Sensei Julio Rivera. He has also studied self defense techniques under World renowned BJJ and MMA Champion, Vitor Shaolin Ribeiro. Rafael earned a Masters in Criminal Justice from John Jay. He began training in Judo and BJJ at Omni shortly after. He has earned medals at several competitions, including the IBJJF Boston Open, New York International Judo Cup, Big Apple BJJ tournament, LI Pride and Tech Judo. He uses his six years of teaching experience from City University to teach children and adult classes.